ALLEA Welcomes Council Conclusions on Research Assessment and Open Science

ALLEA welcomes the adoption of the Conclusions on Research Assessment and Implementation of Open Science by the Council of the European Union on 10 June. See ALLEA’s full response here.

The Conclusions are in agreement with points that ALLEA has made over the years, in particular on the necessity of appropriately implementing and rewarding open science practices and the development of research assessment criteria that follow principles of excellence, research integrity and trustworthy science.

At the same time, ALLEA continues to stress that it matters how we open knowledge, as the push for Open Access publishing has also paved the way for various unethical publishing practices. The inappropriate use of journal- and publication-based metrics in funding, hiring and promotion decisions has been one of the obstacles in the transition to a more open science, and furthermore fails to recognize and reward the diverse set of competencies, activities, and outputs needed for our research ecosystem to flourish.

ALLEA therefore welcomes the principles set out in the Conclusion for designing novel approaches to research assessment, with particular weight on recognizing (1) the critical role for peer review in research assessment and (2) the importance of integrity and ethics in developing criteria focused on quality and impact. 

ALLEA underscores that the described reforms are urgently needed and require concerted efforts from the international academic community, supported by infrastructures for exchanging best practices as well as the necessary financial resources to implement these. 

Read ALLEA’s full response

ALLEA Working Group European Research Area meets in Stockholm

On Wednesday 6 April, the ALLEA Working Group European Research Area (ERA) met in Stockholm for its first in-person meeting. Representatives of European Academies gathered at the premises of the Royal Swedish Academy as well as remotely to discuss the most pressing issues regarding a new ERA for Research and Innovation”.

The meeting was opened with a warm welcome and introduction by the Working Group Chair, Professor Kerstin Sahlin (Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences & Royal Swedish Academy of Letters, History, and Antiquities). This was followed by a statement from Professor Volodymyr Radchenko, member of the Working Group who joined the meeting remotely from Kiev on behalf of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine. In his statement, Professor Radchenko thanked the European Academies for their ongoing support to Ukrainian researchers fleeing the war and lauded them for taking a clear stance in condemning the Russian invasion, while also calling for more support of researchers and research infrastructures within Ukraine*.

After Professor Radchenko’s moving intervention, ALLEA Board Member Maarten Prak (KNAW) stressed how academic cooperation has always been crucial in the creation of a shared (European) culture and identity, yet he also highlighted that the current war clearly shows that there is still a long way to go in overcoming major obstacles and challenges. This proves how important it is to further build and strengthen a European Research Area which works to promote peace, research integrity, academic freedom, and equal opportunities for all.

ALLEA participates in the ongoing ERA Forum Experts Group meetings as a stakeholder representing the European Academies of Sciences and Humanities. The ERA Forum is co-chaired by the European Commission and EU Member States. Associated countries and representatives of seven types of stakeholders are invited to join the meetings. The Forum has been established to implement and coordinate the objectives of the ERA, particularly by implementing the jointly developed ERA Policy Agenda.

The group generally welcomed the initiative for a stronger ERA and expressed their appreciation that the research community is actively involved in the process of drafting and commenting new policies. Among others, they stressed the importance to focus on excellence, young researchersmobility and career development, stopping the brain drain in some central and eastern European countries, international cooperation beyond Europe, research assessment and evaluation, and the opportunities for open science and its potentially dangerous impact on young researchers, the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences, as well as research integrity.

In the months to come, the outcomes of this meeting will further inform ALLEA’s feedback to the European Commission. The results of this process are expected towards the end of the year.

Members of the ALLEA Working Group European Research Area gathered in Stockholm on 6 April 2022.

ALLEA is very grateful to the Working Group members for their active participation, and we also wish to thank the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences and the Royal Swedish Academy for Letters, History and Antiquities for hosting this meeting and the following dinner. Everyone expressed their excitement of meeting in person again and look forward to shaping the development of a new ERA for Research and Innovation on behalf of the European Academies.  

For more information visit the webpage of ALLEA’s Working Group European Research Area (ERA)


*See ALLEA’s European Fund for Displaced Scientists and the response by the scientific community in support of Ukraine for more information on how Ukrainian research and researchers are being supported in and outside Ukraine.