ALLEA Permanent Working Group Intellectual Property Rights sets out its roadmap for 2017

The ALLEA Permanent Working Group Intellectual Property Rights met in Munich at the Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition on 24 February to plan its roadmap for 2017 and to discuss the most pressing developments relevant for science and research in the field of intellectual property rights, including topics such as Human Embryonic Stem Cells (HESC), “Big Data” and scientific publications, among others.

In its first meeting of the year, the Group set its priorities and agreed to focus future activities on deliberating and producing statements on the patentability of Human Embryonic Stem Cells (HESC) (see below for related previous statements), the patenting of products of essentially biological processes, the inventorship of multinational inventions, and the European Commission’s proposal for a directive on copyright in the Digital Single Market.

Furthermore, the experts will continue monitoring the latest developments on “Open Access”, taking into account the complex negotiations between the publisher Elsevier and several German scientific institutions, as well as the case law of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) concerning the linking and making available of contents on the Internet. The Group has published a series of statements on Open Access scientific publishing in the past, including Enhancement of Open Access to scientific publications in Europe”, as well as a follow-up statement and a supplementary statement (see below for download).

In the meeting, Professor Carlo D’Adda on behalf of the ALLEA Board also informed the participants about the recent developments concerning ALLEA’s involvement in the EU funded project SAPEA (Science Advice for Policy by European Academies), which brings together the five European academy networks to work within the EU’s Scientific Advice Mechanism (SAM) and contributes to this new innovative scientific advice system in the provision of science advice to the European Commission.

ALLEA’s Permanent Working Group Intellectual Property Rights is chaired by Professor Joseph Straus, Director Emeritus of the Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition. The expert group regularly issues reflections, declarations and recommendations on the most challenging topics of patents and copyrights. Most recently, it has published a Statement on the Patent-Related Aspects of CRISPR-Cas Technology.

Published statements on related topics:

Open Access

Human Embryonic Stem Cells (HESC)

ALLEA co-signs letter by European Science Organisations

ALLEA co-signs open letter by European science organisations calling on European Institutions and national governments in Europe to protect the freedom and autonomy of science.

The letter is in response to some of the first actions of the newly inaugurated US President Donald J. Trump, which show a blatant disregard for the universal values and principles of science and research. Upon release the open letter was co-signed by ALLEA and its partner Academia Europaea alongside 37 other European science organisations

Please see the letter here

FP9 Working Group holds its kick-off meeting in Brussels

The newly formed ALLEA Framework Programme 9 Working Group held its kick-off meeting on 9 February in Brussels at the Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium for Science and the Arts to plan and discuss the roadmap for their future actions. The Group aims at developing an ALLEA perspective for the future of EU research and innovation following the conclusion of the Horizon 2020 programme. ALLEA President, Prof. Günter Stock, welcomed the members of the group and particularly pointed to the importance of substantially integrating social sciences and humanities in any forthcoming EU funding project for research.

Members of the FP9 Working Group gathered at the Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium for Science and the Arts in Brussels for the kick-off meeting

The ALLEA President thanked the fellows for their commitment and engagement with ALLEA activities, and expressed satisfaction at the wide and keen interest among Member Academies in taking part in the group. “It is very important that the academies have a say on the future of research funding in Europe and over the last years we have been able to further increase our sway with the decision-makers in charge of EU research policy”, Prof. Stock stated.

“It is very important that the academies have a say on the future of research funding in Europe and over the last years we have been able to further increase our sway with the decision-makers in charge of EU research policy”

Günter Stock, ALLEA President

The Group consists of twenty members representing fifteen countries of the Council of Europe region and has already defined the fundamental lines of its programme. Key aspects are the engagement with relevant European institutions, the development of suggestions based on input from the ALLEA Member Academies, and the production of regular updates for the ALLEA Board and Member Academies. The agenda of the first meeting included key research policy topics such as the guiding principles and core values of a future EU research and innovation programme, as well as technical aspects of the budget, implementation and evaluation of the plan, among others.

The overall purpose of the Group is to ensure that any successor research programme to Horizon 2020 is developed taking into account the interests of the scientific and research community in mind. Particularly it seeks to guarantee that the Social Sciences and Humanities are fully represented in the design of any future plan. As a successor to the already completed ALLEA Social Sciences and Humanities Working Group, the fellows will be able to build on existing work and ample experience.