Future scenarios for research and innovation policies in Europe

Research and Transfer Service

7 June 2017

A new EU report looks to the 2030s, spelling out how research and innovation could make the future brighter.

The growing complexity of the world will require that society develop more options for coping. Options will come from new discoveries, inventions, ideas – in short, from research and innovation. This foresight report, commissioned by the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Research and Innovation, draws on a broad range of sources about megatrends shaping the world today and projects them forward into the 2030s. The report describes two possible outcomes: That the trends go on unmanaged and uncontrolled, or that society takes action. The first outcome would be negative: climate change, environmental degradation, explosive migration, an unhealthy population, crowded and dangerous cities, mass unemployment and global strife – and Europe a victim. The second outcome would be positive: climate control, sustainable land and sea management, a circular economy with greater productivity, a healthier and longer-lived population with fulfilling work and leisure, peace – and Europe a leader. The report goes on to illustrate specific ways in which research and innovation could help Europe realise the positive scenario or at least minimise the harm of the negative.

Further information available here.

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