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Historical archive

Climate for Research

Historical archive

Published under: Stoltenberg's 2nd Government

Publisher Ministry of Education and Research

White paper on research

The new White paper on research ”Climate for Research”, the government emphasises that public research spending will continue to increase. Furthermore, Norwegian research policy will be defined by nine research policy goals. The Government emphasizes that research should contribute to meet societal and global challenges like climate change.

The new White paper on research ”Climate for Research”, the government emphasises that public research spending will continue to increase. Furthermore, Norwegian research policy will be defined by nine research policy goals. The Government emphasizes that research should contribute to meet societal and global challenges like climate change.

Faksimile av forskningsmeldingenContinuing the strong growth in research spending that we have seen during this Government, public R&D-expenditure will reach about one per cent of GDP by the end of the next parliamentary period. In the White paper the Government stresses that it will “continue to increase research spending in the years to come”.

- To an even greater degree, Norwegian research will contribute to Norway’s ability to face significant societal challenges and to the shift to a greener knowledge-based economy. However, research is not merely validated through a perspective of usefulness, research is also about developing ourselves and society, says Minister of Research and Higher Education Tora Aasland.

Nine goals for Norwegian Research

The future research budgets will be modelled to support nine goals for Norwegian research policy. Five of these are thematic and concern facing global challenges, further developing our welfare state and providing a strong basis for industry and innovation. Four of the goals are overarching and concern high quality, increased internationalization, more cooperation and a successful and efficient research sector.

- The overarching goals will work to support the five thematic goals and contribute to develop Norway as a nation of knowledge and culture, says Tora Aasland.

Re-defining the growth target – from input to output

The Government keeps the three per cent of GDP funding target for research investments as a long term ambition, but in the petroleum-based Norwegian economy this target is considered an unsatisfactory short-term goal.

-  The three per cent target has proven an inadequate short-term tool for governing research policy. Whether or not we have a successful research policy should depend on whether we reach our policy goals. Research policy should not be made into a product of the price level of petroleum, says Aasland. 

She illustrates this by pointing to the economic development in the coming years:

-  In 2009, and maybe in 2010, it is possible that GDP will decline. This means that Norway will come much closer to realizing the three per cent target without actually increasing spending. 

The Government will initiate a more systematic follow-up of the results and quality of Norwegian research. The White paper is an important contribution in changing the focus from spending to results and quality. A panel of experts will make recommendations on how the research policy goals will be defined and measured.

 

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