If research and innovation is to help solve the societal challenges, researchers and innovators must work together with the rest of society.


One factor that contributed to Horizon 2020 being structured around societal challenges was the major scientific conference New World – New Solutions  held in Lund in 2009 during the Swedish presidency of the EU. The declaration that was published after the conference has had a great impact on European research policy.

One of Horizon 2020’s sub-programmes Science with and for Society, SwafS, funds projects that support this type of collaboration. Examples of EU projects include Orion Open Science, SciShops and Researchers Night.

SwafS consists of several sub areas. Find out more via the following links:

The sub areas are also ’cross-cutting issues’ in other parts of Horizon 2020, which run throughout the framework programme and feature in calls totalling around the same amount of funding as the whole of the SwafS programme.

Towards an Open Science Society

In our position paper for the new framework programme,FP9, the advocacy platform embraces the principles of Open Science and Responsible Research and Innovation, and fully support the recommendations from the ’Lamy report’ LAB-FAB-APP. The platform believes that active involvement and mobilisation of all sectors of society must be ensured, in order to obtain research results and innovations which are fully coherent, sustainable, transparent and relevant for society.

The new framework programme, FP9 should therefore be designed in a way that it is open to the involvement of all societal actors, including citizens, and to actors from outside of the EU. Moreover the science-society relationship needs to be further strengthened, and this could be done by mainstreaming the RRIprinciples throughout FP9.

The following key areas needs to be considered and included in the development of the new programme:

  • Opening up Science to Society – for a Sustainable Future
  • Engaging, involving and mobilising society and citizens
  • Science education – the basis for scientific literacy and scientific careers
  • Open Access – the key to achieving an open knowledgeable society
  • Gender mainstreaming – in organisations, project implementation and evaluation
  • Reaching the goals – evaluating and communicating scientific impacts.

For more information about each of the above mentioned  key areas please have a look at the position paper Towards an Open Science Society.

Would you like more information?

Get in touch with us in the project team if you are interested to know more about the advocacy platform, our position paper for FP9 Towards an Open Science Society and how you can include SwafS/RRI aspects into your Horizon 2020 project application.

The SwafS expert and member of the European Commission’s Working Group for Sweden is Anna Maria Fleetwood at the Swedish Research Council. National contact point for SwafS is Gwendolyn Schaeken at Vinnova.