Dynamics and Policy of an Evolving European Research Space
Edited by Linda Wedlin and Maria Nedeva
AbstractIn the wake of the twenty-first century, Europe embarked on an ambitious, large-scale project ideologically framed and politically justified by the concept of the European Research Area. This project has not only brought about a new set of policy and governance mechanisms within the EU, but has significantly altered the understanding and functioning of the role of science and science policy at the European level. To understand these far-reaching transformations, this chapter elaborates a framework for understanding the current shift in European science policy and organization, and the dynamics that this change may create in the field of science and research. We describe the current and past transformations of the European science space as a transition between two relatively stable and persistent stages of science support; from what we term an era of ‘science in Europe’ to the development of a coherent space that we term ‘European science’. This transition involves three significant parts: 1) a change in the rationale for supporting research and building research capacity at the European level, 2) changes in the targets for policy intervention, and 3) a transformation of the organizational architectonics of the European science space. We analyse how the transition from ‘Science in Europe’ to ‘European Science’ unfolds along these three dimensions and marks a development that is characterised by increasing the level of commensurability between the European research space and national research spaces. This has serious implications for the complex relationships and interactions between the European level and national research spaces generally and some of their parts in particular.
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