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Bulgaria and Hungary first countries to use new EC Policy Support Facility review tool

The European Commission has launched a new Policy Support Facility (PSF) to help EU member states reform their research and innovation policies.

Brussels considers such reforms as a priority for EU economic policy as highly performing research and innovation systems can kick-start renewed growth and job creation. The first countries to make use of the PSF are Bulgaria and Hungary.

Commenting on the PSF, Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, said: "To exit the crisis and build solid foundations for growth and jobs, all EU member states face the task of reforming their research and innovation systems. We need to work together to best tackle the challenge of how to identify and implement those reforms that are key to achieving sustainable growth."

Bulgaria is the first EU country that has decided to use the PSF. With the support of the Commission, a panel of senior experts and officials from other governments will conduct a peer review of Bulgaria and make recommendations for improvements to public funding of research, to research careers, and to knowledge transfer between academia and business.

Welcoming the initiative, Todor Tanev, Bulgaria's Education and Science Minister, said: "This instrument will help us with the launch of the reforms necessary to make our research and innovation system more effective, notably as regards its governance. The results of the peer review will feed into the crucial efforts of the Ministry of Education and Science and the government to raise Bulgaria's science and innovation profile and to make it more result-oriented and beneficial to the society."

Adding his thoughts, József Pálinkás, president of the Hungarian National Research, Development and Innovation Office, said he considered PSF as "a new effective tool under Horizon 2020", helping to support policy makers in improving Hungarian R&I policies. The Commission has also already agreed to support Hungary to prepare for a possible peer review later this year.

Official press release