Big businesses, policy research and design experts quizzed by peers on effectiveness of EU research and innovation proposals

21 February 2013


The House of Lords Internal Market, Infrastructure and Employment EU Sub-Committee continues its inquiry into the effectiveness of EU research and innovation proposals on Monday 25 February, when it will question representatives from international businesses, policy research experts and design bodies.

At 4.05pm, the Committee will question:

  • Adam Heathfield, Senior Director of the Worldwide Policy Team, Pfizer;
  • Colin Sirett, R&T National Representative and Head of R&T Business Development and Partnerships, Airbus UK division;
  • Ian Risk, Vice President, Head of Innovation and Works UK, EADS and;
  • Dr Simon Weeks, Head of Aerospace, Research and Technology, Rolls Royce.

The Committee will use the session to explore with the witnesses issues including the benefits that exist for big businesses in participating in EU projects and programmes with a strong research and innovation dimension; whether the economic crisis across Europe has impacted on the research and innovation environment at both national and EU levels; whether the EU strikes the right balance between legislation and regulation of research and innovation and its use; and whether the EU can add value with ideas and funding in ‘non-traditional’ areas of research and innovation.

Following on, at 5pm, the Committee will hear from:

  • Jonathan Grant, RAND Europe Principal Research Fellow and former RAND Europe President; and
  • Gavin Cawood, Operations Director, National Centre for Product Design and Development Research and Design Wales.

The Committee will question the witnesses on issues including how the EU consults with SMES and big businesses on its research and innovation proposals; whether current methods of cooperation effective and whether other methods should also be considered; how successful the EU has been in securing financial backing for projects with a strong research and innovation dimension; and their ideas on the essential elements of an effective proposal relating to research and innovation.

The evidence session will take place at 4.05am on Monday 25 February in Committee Room 2.

The sessions will be webcast live at www.parliamentlive.tv and are also open to the public. Journalists wishing to attend should go to Parliament’s Cromwell Green Entrance and should allow time for security screening.

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