New UniTN Master in EU Affairs - EU Strategy and Policy Advisor: application by 8th June

The first edition of the Master’s programme EU Affairs - EU Strategy and Policy Advisor will be launched in September 2018. The programme is promoted by the Faculty of Sociology and Social Research of the University of Trento (Italy) in collaboration with the EU Affairs consultancy firm Euro Partners & Associés s.p.r.l., based in Brussels.

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Flash News: The Commission adopted the proposal of Multiannual Financial Framework for the period 2021 – 2027

The Commission adopted yesterday the proposal of Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) of the EU for the period 2021 – 2027. The new MFF foresees a total expenditure for the seven years of €1.135 billion, equivalent to 1.11% of the EU27's gross national income (GNI)  (general fact sheet). The proposal of the Commission concentrates resources on a limited number of priorities for which the impact of the Union's action in terms of benefits for citizens is stronger. The sectors with a greatest European added value, that will thus receive more funding in the next years, are: security and defense, migration flows and border managementclimate change, youth mobility and research&innovation.

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Voices from the Regions: Rethinking the communication of Cohesion Policy

On the 26th of April the conference “Voices from the Regions: Rethinking the communication of Cohesion Policy” took place at the European Committee of the Regions. At the event the research findings of the COHESIFY project were presented, which focused:

• on the citizens ‘perceptions of the cohesion policy;
• on how the cohesion policy is portrayed in the media;
• on the improvement of the communication of the cohesion policy.

Prof. John Bachtler opened the conference with the statement that good communication of the cohesion policy is necessary in order that citizens also identify with the EU.

Dana Spinant from the Directorate General for Regional and Urban Policy of the European Commission declared that only a third of European citizens do know about the cohesion policy.
Dr. Andreja Pegan from the Trinity College Dublin declared that most participants of the study were aware of cohesion projects which involved infrastructure. She explained also that most of them find out about the cohesion policy through signs. Citizens get informed also through traditional media but rarely through social media.

Dr. Heinz Brandenburg from the University of Strathclyde presented the citizens’ survey. He declared that among the EU funding, the ERDF (European Regional Development Fund) was the most known. He explained that according to the participants the cohesion fund is the one who contributes the most to the creation of an EU identity. Furthermore, he explained that people from net beneficiary countries were more aware of the cohesion policy than people from net payer countries.

Dr. Vasiliki Triga from the Cyprus University of Technology presented the results of the study on how the media frames the cohesion policy. He explained that there are basically eight different ways on how journalists report about the cohesion policy:

• in terms of economic consequences (for ex. jobs, costs)
• in terms of quality of life (for ex. raising of equality)
• in terms of culture
• in terms of incompetence of local governments (for ex. misuse of funding)
this happens especially often in Romania
• in terms of power (for ex. which member State gets more funding)
• in terms of national interests (for ex. improvement of better relationships with neighbours)
• in terms of basic principles of the cohesion policy
• in terms of misuse of the funds (for ex. corruption).

According to the research most journalist report about the cohesion policy in terms of economic aspects. Dr. Triga declared also that the regional media reports more positive and the national media more negative about the cohesion policy. He came to the conclusion that the media does frame the cohesion policy and that in overall, they speak positively about the cohesion policy.

Dr. Carlos Mendez from the University of Strathclyde gave the following recommendations in order to improve the communication of the cohesion policy and to connect the European citizens better:

• EU funding projects need to be seen by citizens
• improvement on communication of the cohesion policy is needed
• the cohesion policy should be more reported in the social media
• to democratise the cohesion policy: citizens should be involved in decision-making process
more engagement of the citizens in programming would lead to an increasement in communication
• to bring the projects more alive by creating a one central platform with audio-visuals

Dana Spinant from the Directorate General for Regional and Urban Policy of the European Commission concluded the conference with the following declarations for the post 2020 cohesion policy, which:

• would try to avoid burden on national authorities
• would use more emotional communication to which citizens can more relate to it
• to target more the regional and local audience (for ex. to use the local language)
• taking account of people view on the programming
• to prioritise more on social media.

The entire report can be downloaded here.

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Flash News: The Innovation Radar

On April 10, during the Digital Day 2018 in Brussels, the Commission launched a new tool, called Innovation Radar, with the objective to give visibility to innovative systems and solutions financed by European funds and facilitate their market outlet.

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ERRIN Innovation & Investments WG Meeting

On April 19, the Representation of the European Region Tyrol-South Tyrol-Trentino hosted the first 2018 meeting of Innovation & Investing working group of ERRIN (the European Regions Research and Innovation Network). The EU Liaison office of the Autonomous Province of Trento is an active member of the Network and co-leads the I&I working group.

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Flash news: European Defence Fund

 In June 2017 the Commission launched a European Defence Fund, already announced by President Juncker in September 2016 and backed by the European Council in December 2016. The fund establishes 5.5 billion Euro per year to support and coordinate research and innovation in the defence sector, financing collaborative projects that must involve at least three actors from different Member States.

The fund is mainly divided into two sections: the first one concerns the collaborative research and is fully and directly funded from the EU budget (€90 million until the end of 2019 and €500 million per year after 2020), while the second one is due to the co-financing of activities for the development and acquisition of technologies and defence equipment (€500 million in total for 2019 and 2020 and 1 billion per year after 2020 for co-financing of the EU up to 20%, €2 billion until 2020 with a further increase to €4 billion per year after 2020 for projects funded more than 80% by the Member States). The objective is to support Member States' more efficient spending in joint defence capabilities (avoiding unnecessary duplication and liability in the deployability of defence forces), strengthen European citizens' security and foster a competitive and innovative European defence industrial base.

On 9th March 2018 the Commission adopted the working programme for 2018 for the preparatory action that has to be implemented between 2018 and 2020. The resources allocated for 2018 are €40 million of the total €90 million available until the end of 2019. Consequently, three calls of proposals have been opened for projects that must have a duration between 12 and 36 months.

The first call has an indicative amount of up to €12 million and will select one project for the development of a high-performance (re)configurable system-on-a-chip or system-in-package components for defence applications. The objective is to guarantee real-time data processing on which an increasing number of defence applications critically depend upon.

For the second call €5.4 million have been allocated. The aim is to fund one project for the development of a high power laser effector with an output power of well beyond 100 kW and that can operate at a high duty cycle. It should also be able to cope with variable atmospheric conditions and present compact design and size so that it can be mounted on mobile (sea, land or air) platforms.

The third call is aimed at funding one coordination and support action to start the strategic technology foresight and has an indicative amount of up to €1.9 million. The main objective of a long term strategy is to minimize the technological dependence of the EU (including raw materials and basic components for the development of specific technologies).The action must address at least the mapping of current dependencies (possibly down to the raw material sourcing), the identification of technology building blocks for which European technology non-dependence will be crucial and the development of solutions to reduce the risk of military and technological dependence.



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The Sophie Scholl Language High School on a study trip in the European capital


From 21st to 24th March, the Sophie Scholl Language High School in Trento organized a trip to the European capital, in collaboration with the EU Liaison Office in Brussels of the Autonomous Province of Trento.

On the first day the group of students visited the European Parliament, deepening the understanding of the functioning of this institution and the stages of the process of European unification. At the headquarters of the Representation of the European Region Tyrol - South Tyrol - Trentino a meeting with MEP Herbert Dorfmann was organized: he described his work as a MEP, whereas Valeria Liverini, director of the PAT office presented the role and activities promoted by the Office.


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Considering the group's studies, the program was enriched with a presentation of the work experience of Margherita Franch, currently employed at the European Commission in the DG Translation. The day ended with a lecture by Giuliano Castellan, an EU Council official who focused his presentation on the institutional architecture and decision-making processes of the European Union.

On the second day several visits are planned, including the European Committee of the Regions, the European Economic and Social Committee, and the European Commission.





Tags: Study visit Trento englishCulture and Education engTrentino

EU-TIPS: Joint meeting with the stakeholders


From transport to student exchanges, from agriculture to trade, from culture to health care; many things of everyday life are decided at the European level. For this reason, it is important to be present in the very centre of the European Union where major decisions are adopted.

The Autonomous Province of Trento has had a liaison office with the European institutions in Brussels since 1995. Yesterday, the office took stock of what has been achieved in the previous years, while discussing the challenges for the next European programming period starting from 2021. Invited guests included representatives of the Province of Trento and relevant stakeholders such as FBK, FEM, HIT, Trentino Sviluppo, Federazione della Cooperazione, Università, Associazione Artigiani, Consorzio dei Comuni, Camera di Commercio and ConfServizi-Cispel Trentino Alto Adige.


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The president of the Province Ugo Rossi stressed the necessity to further enhance the effort of the Brussels Office. “We have to raise awareness on the importance of this activity and improve the exchange of experience among all actors involved.” Rossi therefore suggested to implement a system of report that would help to better understand the meaning of commitment at the European level. He called it a sort of “return” that will contribute to counter the negative perception of Europe that many citizens have. Rossi maintained “During the previous years, an important change has occurred because we were used to consider the European resources as something additional. Now, we are obligated to think about them as integral parts of the provincial budget.” According to Rossi this is no minor change. It is therefore necessary to strengthen the programming and coordination tools, avoiding fragmentation to maximize the use of communitarian resources. Rossi concluded: “We must all undertake additional efforts to improve the logic and effectiveness of the system as well as improve our project skills.

The current European budget amounts to approx. EUR 964 billion, corresponding to approx. 1% of the total GDP of the 28 Member States and only approx. 2% of the European Union public expenditure. The exit of the United Kingdom will certainly have an impact on the total amount of the available finances by 2021. In the current budget framework, the Province of Trento benefits from European funding of the structural funds, corresponding approximately to 2.7% of the provincial budget. “During the period 2014-2017, Trentino, a land historically in favour of research and innovation, delivered an impressive performance on the framework program for research and innovation Horizon 2020” - recalled Valeria Liverini, director of the Brussels Office. In September 2017, the funding obtained by provincial stakeholders amounted to approximately EUR 66 million. The success rate of the stakeholders is in line with the European average. Liverini concluded: “The next post 2020 European Programming will put more emphasis on direct management programs with particular attention to the development of synergies between the structural funds and the thematic programs directly managed by the Commission.”

To support this activity, the Brussels Office has undergone a complete change in the last years, becoming a real “hub” not only for the offices of “Gruppo Provincia” but also for the several local stakeholders, for which it offers a series of specialised services.