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Should the EU Framework Programmes for research use the recently piloted lump-sum (LS) system instead of traditional, expense-based reimbursement? The idea behind LS is that payments are made based on obtained results according to the agreed project plan. It aims to simplify the system by removing cost reporting, and helping to shift the focus from financial management to the technical and scientific content of projects. This study has collected input from 167 individuals from 29 countries, working ...

The word 'innovation' is often used as shorthand for improved technical, economic and social processes. However, any specific innovation involves the redistribution of costs and benefits, creating winners and losers. For some, regulation of technology should be avoided in case it hinders innovation, while others see regulation as essential, to mitigate risks on the path to innovation. However, regulation and innovation are not a zero-sum game. Debates about regulatory (in)action and its impact on ...

Serious and organised crime inflict huge costs on both the EU economy and society. Organised crime is an increasingly dynamic and complex phenomenon, as it has become more interconnected, transnational and digital. The Covid-19 pandemic has led to an increase in cybercrime, fraud and counterfeiting. Police and judicial actions and the effective implementation of existing EU instruments are critical in tackling this challenge. New strategies to disrupt the business models and structures of criminal ...

Automated decision-making by systems that use machine learning to dynamically improve performance are still seen as lacking the 'human perspective' and flexibility to adapt to the particular nuances of specific cases. But perhaps, as they lack the 'cunning' to hide their biases, automated systems actually make fairer decisions than do humans, when these decisions are based on data that have been properly curated.

This study describes two main dimensions of 5G technology, i.e. privacy and security. This research paper focuses on the analysis of cybersecurity risks and threats, privacy challenges and 5G technology opportunities at EU level and worldwide, as well as the relationship between cybersecurity risks and privacy issues. The methodological framework for this assessment of the impact of 5G technology is built on three pillars: (i) a document-based analysis; (ii) a parallel analysis with stakeholder involvement ...

This report reviews the existing scientific evidence regarding the mental health of different population groups amid the Covid 19 pandemic in the European Union (EU) and its influential factors. Since the beginning of the pandemic, there has been extensive research on the psychosocial and mental health consequences, showing negative effects especially in the general population compared to before. On the other hand, there is also evidence of resilient responses as the pandemic progressed – that is ...

The modalities of financing the green transition, the need to maintain social justice, and the particular challenges facing Africa were among the themes addressed in a wide ranging discussion on how to 'build back better', at the 2021 ESPAS conference.

Scientific evidence indicates that beneficial microorganisms (that live in nearly ubiquitous communities called microbiota) are an essential component of human health, and could be a new frontier for personalised medicine to fight non-communicable diseases and improve human health. For their potential benefits to reach society, the EU should consider standardisation, protocols, and a regulatory framework to support research and innovation.

Xenotransplantation, defined as the transplantation of animal derived organs and cells into humans, is currently a very active focus of research as it overrides some of the obstacles encountered with tissue engineering, such as vascularization and innervation. The resurgence of interest in xenotransplantation is mainly attributed to the improvement of gene editing techniques (such as CRISPR/Cas9), since genetically engineered animals have been generated to overcome organ rejection. However, xenotransplantation ...

With a focus on research and development in the area of innovative medicines, this study discusses a new European approach to pharmaceutical policy. After examining the European pharmaceutical sector's features, and the strengths and weaknesses of the current research and business model, the study explores the need for and the concept of a European infrastructure with a long-term transboundary mission. Any such European medicines infrastructure should focus on threats and areas of research and development ...