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Research and innovation

Global partnerships

Why do we need global partnerships?

International collaboration on the bioeconomy is crucial, as common global challenges such as climate change, increasing population, land degradation, biodiversity loss and ocean pollution require a common approach between the Commission and its international partners.

Initiatives supported by the EU

The Commission has led the development of the following major international research cooperation initiatives or partnerships

Global Bioeconomy Summit

The Global Bioeconomy Summit (GBS) is a forum to discuss emerging opportunities and challenges of the bioeconomy and develop visions for a future sustainable bioeconomy: key actors come from governments, science, business and civil society. The Commission is a partner of the GBS 2020.

International Bioeconomy Forum (IBF)

The IBF is a co-owned platform to guide international cooperation on a limited number of research and innovation priorities and horizontal activities which are crucial for the development of a global, sustainable bioeconomy and addressing related global challenges.

The IBF is based on ad-hoc working groups focusing on specific subjects related to the bioeconomy. The activities are organised on the basis of variable geometry, with participation based on specific interests (this applies also to the participation of the European Commission).

The forum was launched with a plenary meeting in 2017 co-chaired by the European Commission and AgriFood Canada. 9 countries from outside Europe, covering the five continents participated. Canada, US, Argentina, South Africa, India, China and New Zealand joined the IBF as members. Australia and South Korea joined as observers. Over the years, Japan and the United Kingdom also joined the IBF as observers.

EU Member States are also represented in the plenary through a delegate of the Standing Committee on Agricultural Research (SCAR). Other observers that participated to the plenary are the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and the BIOEAST initiative.

5 working groups were set up, reporting directly to the plenary:

  • Microbiome, led by the European Commission
  • ICT in Food Systems, led by New Zealand
  • Plant Health, led by Canada and the USA
  • Forestry, led by Canada and New Zealand
  • Biorefineries, led by South Africa.

Contact: RTD-BIOECONOMYatec [dot] europa [dot] eu (RTD-BIOECONOMY[at]ec[dot]europa[dot]eu)

EU-Africa research and innovation partnership on food and nutrition security and sustainable agriculture (FNSSA)

Partnership to boost the impact of AU-EU research at local level. Part of the EU-Africa cooperation.

Read more about the FNSSA partnership and funded projects.

Partnership for research and innovation in the Mediterranean area (PRIMA)

PRIMA is a public-public partnership fostering joint research and innovation activities among Mediterranean countries. It aims at developing innovative and sustainable solutions in agriculture, food production and water provision, encouraging application by communities, enterprises and citizens.

Read more about PRIMA