The `challenges´ policy target: the need for novel solutions to old problems?

Effie Amanatidou, Susanne Giesecke, Philine Warnke

Research output: Chapter in Book or Conference ProceedingsConference Proceedings with Oral Presentationpeer-review


The `grand´ or `global´ or `societal´ challenges rhetoric used in justifying rationales in the area of research and innovation policies has spread considerably over the last five years. While this discourse has started mainly at the EU level it has also penetrated the national level with several countries orienting their policies, in isolation or in collaboration with others, towards dealing with global challenges. It is interesting to see the `new´ elements in today´s discourse in comparison with similar policy discourses in the past. At the same time it is also worth examining the ways this term is addressed (explicitly or implicitly) and what it implies in European policy documents as well as reports presenting future strategies and policy orientation at European, national or sectoral levels. This will follow an analytical framework developed by an EU-SPRI funded project (represented by the abstract submitted by Kallreud, et. al. under Theme 5, `Emerging challenge-driven approaches in contemporary research and innovation policies´) and it will be based on the results from the ongoing FP7 project "Visions for ERA - VERA" where a stocktaking exercise was carried out of "Grand Challenges" identified by forward looking studies since 2007. Within this context, existing EU policy instruments (such as joint programming initiatives or European innovation partnerships) will then be examined in terms of the degree to which they respond to the specific features and implications of the nature and use of `grand challenges´ as rationale for policy intervention.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2013 EU-SPRI Forum Annual Conference "Management of Innovation Policies"
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2013
EventEuropean Forum for Studies of Policies for Research and Innovation -
Duration: 10 Apr 201312 Apr 2013


ConferenceEuropean Forum for Studies of Policies for Research and Innovation

Research Field

  • Former Research Field - Innovation Systems and Policy


  • Grand challenges; global challenges; societal challenges; European research and innovation policy.


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