In view of the increasing complexity and interconnectedness of global challenges, pressures on global commons, the impact of emerging technologies, and not least the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine, science diplomacy plays an ever-greater role, also in view of the EU’s open strategic autonomy and technological sovereignty.
In light of this, it is essential to mobilise all available tools for the EU to achieve its goals and defend its interests in a coordinated way to enhance the impact of the EU’s actions at the global level. In this regard, the Global Approach to Research and Innovation, Europe's strategy for international cooperation in a changing world also highlights a stronger focus on science diplomacy.
In its conclusions on the Global Approach, and on the future governance of the European Research Area (ERA), the Council called for the development of a European Science Diplomacy Agenda. Consequently, discussions on science diplomacy are ongoing, both at institutional level and with relevant stakeholders, with a view of developing a framework for European Science Diplomacy.
The conference organised by the Spanish Presidency of the European Council together with the European Commission has the following objectives:
- Taking stock of the development of the European Framework for Science Diplomacy;
- Progressing the draft framework and discussing the way ahead;
- Offering space for dialogue, co-creation and participation by a broad range of stakeholders and fostering science diplomacy outreach, also beyond the EU;
- and enhancing motivation amongst science diplomacy actors to get actively involved and creating visibility for the ongoing process.
The conference will also be the occasion to celebrate the 5th anniversary of the Madrid Declaration on Science Diplomacy, which has been endorsed by over 200 experts since its adoption in December 2018