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RISIS – Research infrastructure for research and innovation policy studies

During the last decade important efforts have been undertaken to develop new datasets relevant for science and innovation studies. They enable addressing highly relevant issues such as industrial R&D globalisation, patenting activities of firms, university performance, Europeanisation through joint programming, or the dynamics of special research fields such as nano science and technology. Together with computer scientists software platforms for collecting, integrating, and analysing ever more data have been developed. Data and platforms are currently owned and/or located at many different organisations, such as individual research groups, companies, and public organisations – with very restricted access to others. Through deploying various networking and access strategies and through joint research RISIS will decisively open, harmonize, integrate, improve, and extend their availability, quality, and use. Thus RISIS aims at creating a distributed research infrastructure to support and advance science and innovation studies. By doing so, a radically improved evidence base for research and innovation policies, research evaluation, and the quality of policy relevant indicators will be made available.

The general objective of RISIS is to strengthen the network of researchers and data collections in the field of science and innovation studies in order to improve the availability, integration, and use of data for science and innovation studies and to lead to scholarly better and societal more useful collaborative research.

This general objective is implemented in the work programme under three objectives:

  1. Networking between researchers and dissemination of knowledge of the data infrastructure to improve its societal relevance;
  2. Provision of transnational access and services for the researchers in regards to the existing databases;
  3. Joint research activities in order to improve and integrate existing databases, create new ones, and improve software tools that support the research work flow.

It is foreseen to open up two software platforms and nine datasets to researchers in the field – either allowing remote or on site access. In order to organise access, technical, legal, and intellectual issues have to be addressed.

Facilities to be opened are linked to three major thematic areas:

  1. Facilities linked to universities and careers:
    • Leiden ranking of universities, an enlarged research-based ranking focusing on the largest universities;
    • EUMIDA / ETER dataset of European universities, the result of a Europe wide census among universities;
    • MORE database on the mobility of researchers;
    • ProFile panel data on early career researchers in Germany.

  2. Facilities linked to Europeanisation and thematic dynamics:
    • The EUPRO dataset on European project-based collaborations, a rich resource on collaborate research projects initiated by the successive framework programmes;
    • The nano S&T dynamics database, which provides data on new and emerging scientific and technological fields;
    • The JOREP dataset, a data collection about collaborations between funding agencies in a dozen countries.

  3. Facilities linked to firm innovation activities:
    • Corporate Invention Board (CIB), a database on inventive activities of 2000 large corporations;
    • VICO database on start-up and venture capital activities.

Opening up the facilities will be complemented by pursuing a joint research programme focusing on six themes: firm innovation, public sector research, human resources and career development, Europeanisation and ERA dynamics, evaluation and data treatment capabilities.

A training programme will be developed to ensure that interested researchers will be provided with essential information about content and use of the facilities and data sets.

Co-operation partners: Université Paris-Est Marne-la-Vallée (Coordinator) (France),
Stichting VU-VUmc – Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (The Netherlands),
The University of Manchester (UK),
Consiglio Nazionale Delle Ricerche (Italy),
Nordisk institutt for studier av innovasjon, forskning og utdanning (Norway),
AIT Austrian Institute of Technology (Austria),
Universiteit Leiden (The Netherlands),
Politecnico di Milano (Italy),
iFQ – Institute for Research Information and Quality Assurance (Germany),
Università della Svizzera italiana (Suisse),
Samuel Neaman Institute (Israel),
Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (Spain),
University of Sussex (UK)
Duration: January 2014 − December 2017
Funding: European Commission, DG Research
Contact persons: Prof. Dr. Stefan Hornbostel, Dr. Sybille Hinze