March 4, 2022

YERUN is part of the EC Coalition for the reform of research assessment

The European Commission (EC) is leading a historical change in the field of research assessment: it is bringing together research performing organisations, research funding organisations and researchers to agree on a set of objectives, principles and actions that will allow them to engage more safely and efficiently in reforming the current research assessment system. YERUN is among the stakeholder organisations involved in the development of the agreement, represented by its Secretary General, Ms. Silvia Gomez Recio. 

Since March 2021, YERUN has been participating in the EC consultation process on the reform of research assessment. The topic of research assessment is very much in line with the work of the YERUN ad hoc group on the Development of Academic Careers, under the focus area ‘Talent Development’ of the YERUN Strategy 2021-2025. The  members of the ad hoc group, together with those of the YERUN Policy Platform, have provided crucial input for the network’s contribution to this process, leading also to the publication of a position paper on research assessment  in November 2021. 

During the consultation process, the EC discussed with  European and international stakeholders  how to facilitate the  reform so that  research and researchers are assessed on their intrinsic merits and performance rather than on the number of publications and where these are published, promoting qualitative judgment with peer-review, supported by a more responsible use of quantitative indicators. For more information, read the Scoping report published by the EC in November 2021. 

The proposed way forward now consists of a European agreement that would be signed by individual research funding organisations, research performing organisations and national/regional assessment authorities and agencies, as well as by their associations, all willing to engage in a coalition which would aim at reforming  the current research assessment system. YERUN has been invited to be  part of the EC’s core group supporting the drafting of the European agreement, led by the European University Association, Science Europe and the Karen Stroobants  as penholders. Moreover,  seven YERUN members have already joined the coalition (University of Antwerp, Universidad Autonoma de Madrid, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, University of Eastern Finland, Maastricht University, University of Rijeka and University of Southern Denmark). Here is the list of all signing organisations as of today.  For those willing to join these organisations, the EC has opened this call for interest. Through it, organisations can express their interest to become part of the coalition   and to be involved in the process of drafting the agreement. For more information, contact the YERUN Office.

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