ALLEA contributes to European Commission’s consultation on the European Research Area

ALLEA submitted a response to the European Commission’s public consultation on the future of the European Research Area (ERA). This initiative seeks to relaunch and revitalize the ERA and make it better able to address major challenges such as the green and digital transitions, or the COVID-19 crisis.

In its position, ALLEA supports continuous ambition “to broaden the ERA’s outreach and connectivity by promoting open science and research mobility within and beyond its borders, as well as access to research facilities and collections”.

“As innovation is not restricted to technological and economic growth but also concerns social and cultural adaption, it is critical to broaden the remit of the ERA and that Union programmes consider societal values, including fairness/equality, resilience/sustainability, diversity, openness, transparency and trustworthiness,” the contribution states.

The statement points out that “the core of the EU network remains mainly composed of EU-15 participants, with only a restricted number of institutions acting as hubs. Systematic efforts and specific mechanisms are required to encourage researchers across the career cycle and participants from EU-13 and Associated countries to actively shape the EU-wide networks across the ERA.”

The consultation was closed on 3 August and all stakeholder contributions are available here.

Read ALLEA’s contribution.

Fact or fake? New ALLEA project on tackling science disinformation

ALLEA is pleased to announce the launch of a new project, “Fact or Fake”, aimed at tackling science disinformation. The initiative will identify and discuss the root causes leading to science-averse attitudes in European countries, particularly focusing on disinformation campaigns on Covid-19, climate change, and vaccinations.

The project is led by a scientific committee composed of a multidisciplinary group of experts from across Europe. Its chair is Dan Larhammar, President of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences.

The scientific committee will:

  • Promote exchanges and linkages among research, policy, science and communications and media communities on practices and approaches to tackling science disinformation.
  • Develop strategies to address the loss of confidence and trust in scientific evidence.
  • Provide guidance to scientists, science communicators, journalists and policymakers in appropriate ways to navigate and address the issue of science disinformation.

The outcome of the project is aimed to address both the recipients and the creators of science disinformation, examining the problem through a multi-disciplinary lens. Target audiences include researchers and research institutions, science communication practitioners and journalists, as well as policymakers at the national and European levels. 

The project is supported by  Compagnia di San Paolo and builds upon ALLEA-related activities such as ALLEA Working Group Truth, Trust and Expertise  and the Horizon 2020 project PERITIA, which explores the conditions under which people trust expertise used for shaping public policy.

Call for new members for the Global Young Academy

The Global Young Academy is looking for new members. Applications are sought from young, independent scholars who combine the highest level of research excellence with a demonstrated passion for delivering impact.

The call is open to all scholars working in any research-based discipline, including the sciences, medicine, engineering, social sciences, the arts and humanities.

Applicants should be in the early to middle years of their independent careers. The majority of the GYA members are aged 30-40 and the typical period from completion of a PhD or similar degree is 3-10 years. Applicants falling outside these ranges are still invited to send their applications with a justification for why they should be considered.

More information on how to apply can be found here.

ALLEA urges European Parliament to protect Horizon Europe from budget cuts

ALLEA released a statement today in reaction to the European Council deal for the the next Multiannual Financial Framework (2021-2027) and on the EU plan to tackle the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the statement, this proposal represents “a severe and long-term threat to Europe’s capacities as a world leader in science, research and innovation“. ALLEA welcomes the ambition of Members of the European Parliament to seek and secure a larger budget for Horizon Europe and other key research and innovation funding measures:

“In times when fundamental and applied research, evidence-based policy making, and scientific collaboration across boundaries and disciplines are more important than ever to tackle the challenges ahead posed by the pandemic and beyond, governments need to prioritise and increase R&I funding both on national and EU level. 

ALLEA is particularly concerned about the agreement’s implications for the next EU R&I funding programme whose budget has been cut multiple times throughout the Council summit on 17-20 July. Horizon Europe’s budget is now decreased by more than 15% as compared to the latest European Commission’s proposal (May 2020), and is one third lower than the €120 billion figure proposed by the European Parliament, supported widely across the European scientific community including ALLEA and its academies.”

Read the full statement.

Trust in Expertise at times of Covid-19

The EU-funded research project PERITIA just launched its first newsletter dedicated to Covid-19 and trust in expertise. The issue includes highlights from the first five months of the project with a selection of essays, news, interviews, blog posts, and podcasts from its team dealing with how the pandemic is affecting trust in expertise and science advice systems. A general introduction to the project’s research agenda emphasizes three key questions:

  • What is the role of expertise in democracies?
  • How should science inform political decisions?
  • How can we prevent a populist backlash against expertise?

If you are curious about how PERITIA’s team has engaged in public debates and research around these questions, we kindly invite you to take a look and let us know what you think. If you enjoy it, don’t forget to subscribe here.

The project is conducting a comprehensive multi-disciplinary investigation of trust in, and the trustworthiness of, policy-related expert opinion. Its research will develop a theoretical framework to understand the fundamentals of trust, which will be complemented empirically with surveys and in-lab experiments.

Science advice and public engagement

A central part of PERITIA’s work will consist of a comparison of existing science advice mechanisms in four European countries. PERITIA researchers will investigate how expert advice is elicited and which of the available models is more trust enhancing.

The project’s plans also reach beyond research. Investigators seeks to design effective indicators and tools to build trust in expertise informing policy. Their conclusions will be tested in a series of citizens’ forums where experts, policymakers, and citizens will engage in face-to-face discussions on climate change.

ALLEA is a partner in the PERITIA consortium, which is formed by eleven organisations from nine countries, and is leading its work on communications and public engagement. The project is a follow-up of the ALLEA working group Truth, Trust and Expertise.

ALLEA launches Open Science Task Force

ALLEA has launched a task force dedicated to open science and chaired by Luke Drury (Royal Irish Academy). The ALLEA Open Science Task Force will contribute to the development, coordination and implementation of Open Science policies and initiatives with an emphasis on issues relevant to the European Research Area.  

The group will draw on the expertise of ALLEA’s national academy members in promoting science as a global public good that is as open as possible and as closed as necessary and paying close attention to specific considerations of the social sciences and humanities.  

The task force will:  

  • work together with the Global Young Academy in assisting the creation and implementation of the European Commission Open Access publishing platform;  
  • contribute to the expert consultations on the UNESCO Recommendation on Open Science; 
  • liaise with other pertinent stakeholder organisations on Open Science. 
  • amplify the voice of the European Academies in this policy area

Past work on Open Science 

ALLEA has actively contributed to the open science debate since the early 2000s through various initiatives and working groups. Recently, it published the ALLEA Response to Plan S , the open access proposal initiated by European funders, as well as the policy paper Towards Implementing the European Open Science Cloud 

For more information on the rationale behind the task force, check out Luke Drury’s op-ed on the ALLEA Digital Salon.  

New member: Cyprus Academy of Sciences, Letters, and Arts

The Cyprus Academy of Sciences, Letters, and Arts joined ALLEA as a result of the 2020 General Assembly, which took place by correspondence.

The Cyprus Academy of Sciences, Letters and Arts is the highest intellectual institution of Cyprus in the Sciences, Letters, and Arts. The academy was founded in 2017 and has since established itself nationally and initiated connections with European partners. As an independent and completely autonomous institution in its aims to promote the scientific work of Cyprus the academy consists of 3 Sections:

  • Natural Sciences,
  • Letters, and Arts (Humanities),
  • and Ethics, Economic and Political Sciences.

Its main missions are to recognize and promote excellence in Science, Letters, and Arts, cultivate mutual interaction between the Sciences, the Letters and the Arts and establish a Permanent Dialogue between the Sciences and the Humanities.

The first body of the Cyprus Academy, elected  on April 10 2019, currently consists of 16 Members, the 12 Permanent Members plus the four Provisional Permanent Members.

Achilles C. Emilianides, the Secretary-General Cyprus Academy of Sciences, Letters, and Arts said: 

The Cyprus Academy of Sciences, Letters, and Arts expresses its satisfaction for its acceptance as a full member of ALLEA. It is an honor and an opportunity for which we thank ALLEA and its Member Academies.

Both the Cyprus Academy and ALLEA represent the Natural Sciences, the Humanities, and the Social Sciences and this makes the relationship between the Cyprus Academy and ALLEA a truly important one. We do hope that our collaboration in addressing interdisciplinary issues and in advancing new trans-disciplinary initiatives will be mutually beneficial.”

Address: P.O. Box 22554,
1522 Nicosia, Cyprus

New member: Die Junge Akademie

Die Junge Akademie has been elected to join ALLEA as the first representative of the younger generation of academics. Die Junge Akademie is the first academy of young academics worldwide. It offers prominent young academics and artists from German speaking backgrounds interdisciplinary and socially relevant space for academic collaboration. The academy was founded in 2000 as a collaborative project of the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities and the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina. Since then, Die Junge Akademie has developed into a model organization and inspiration for similar initiatives worldwide.

As a member of ALLEA, Die Junge Akademie hopes to help strengthen science and research within Europe and create a freer, more independent and more united research system. Membership of ALLEA also gives Die Junge Akademie an additional opportunity to enrich international dialogue in the field of scientific discourse and policy contributing the perspectives of the younger generation of academics.

“At Die Junge Akademie it’s important to us to cooperate with academics in other disciplines and also in other countries. We are very much looking forward to working with the other European academies and boosting public awareness of the importance of science and research as a central pillar of our shared European future,”

says the speaker Philipp Kanske, a psychologist and neuroscientist at TU Dresden.

In ALLEA interview, Philipp Kanske talks about the emergence of young academies, the role of early-career researchers and the risks and opportunities for science during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In 2020, Die Junge Akademie celebrates its 20th anniversary. All information and events on and on Twitter: #jungeakademie2020

Die Junge Akademie an der Berlin-Brandenburgischen Akademie der Wissenschaften und der Nationalen Akademie der Wissenschaften Leopoldina
Jägerstraße 22/23
10117 Berlin
Phone: +49 (0)30/20370-650
Twitter:  @Junge_Akademie

SAPEA launches a series of webinars on sustainable food systems

The challenges of creating a sustainable food system for Europe will be examined in a series of high-profile webinars in the second half of 2020 — including an analysis of changing consumer attitudes in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Co-hosted by Europe’s academies and other partners, the webinar series will explore different aspects of Europe’s food system following the publication of our major evidence review report, A sustainable food system for the European Union and the scientific opinion of the European Commission’s Chief Scientific Advisors.

Each webinar will be under an hour in length and feature high-profile speakers, including members of SAPEA’s working group on sustainable food systems and representatives of organisations working on related issues. The first event in the series, planned for Thursday 2 July, will focus on changes observed during the Covid-19 pandemic, and will be co-hosted by UK sustainability campaign organisation Hubbub. 

Future webinars in the series, planned for the autumn, will examine the EU’s new Farm2Fork strategy (co-hosted with the EU Food Policy Coalition) and the role of agroecology and technology in sustainability (co-hosted with a European academy). 

For more information visit SAPEA website.

1st SAPEA webinar “Covid-19 and our food: How is the current crisis affecting how we eat?”

2 July 2020, 15:00 (CEST)

Register now


PERITIA Call for Abstracts: Trust in Expertise in a Changing Media Landscape

The EU-funded research project PERITIA has published a call for abstracts on the topic “Trust in Expertise in a Changing Media Landscape”. Accepted papers will be discussed in an international conference in Berlin on 18-19 March 2021. The keynotes of the event include Prof Onora O’Neill (Cambridge), Prof Natali Helberger (Amsterdam), Prof Michael Latzer (Zurich), Prof Christoph Neuberger (Berlin). The project invites abstracts of up to 300 words and a short bio of up to 100 words by 1 September, 2020.

The conference will highlight the question of trust in a changing media landscape, addressing the following three general questions:

  1. How does trust in expertise play out in the context of a changing media landscape, in particular the transformation from legacy media (newspapers, tv) to digital platforms (social media, blogs, vlogs)?
  2. Can we develop a better understanding of conditions of trust and trustworthiness in the context of digital platforms and social media? How may conditions differ in various (European) countries or in the (geopolitical) contexts of different continents?
  3. What is the impact of digital media and its users on (institutional) trust in governance that is rooted in scientific evidence and fact-finding?

Possible topics may include (but are not restricted to):

  • Analytical perspectives on, and empirical investigations of, public debates concerning the value of scientific expertise, e.g. in the area of climate change and the corona-pandemic.
  • Theoretical and practice-based studies on the (changing) conditions for anchoring public trust in institutions and professionals; the ethics of digital communication.
  • Empirical and investigative studies on the role of legacy media vis-à-vis digital platforms in undermining or enhancing trust in social institutions.

Submission Details

This call solicits presentations and papers from a number of (inter)disciplinary fields, bringing together perspectives from media and communication studies, information science, public policy, philosophy, social and political sciences, and more. Papers will be selected on the basis of quality of content and suitability to the theme. The two day conference will feature up to 60 presentations in various panels and keynotes. Selected papers will be considered for publication in a special issue or edited volume.

This conference aims to foster the exchange of ideas across national and disciplinary borders between senior and junior researchers. We have therefore reserved limited funds for travel grants to support excellent contributions from early career scholars and scholars from the global south. Please indicate your interest when submitting your abstract.

PERITIA invites abstracts of up to 300 words and a short bio of up to 100 words by 1 September, 2020.

Abstracts should be sent to

Information regarding acceptance should be available by early October 2020.

ALLEA is a partner in the PERITIA Consortium.