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Briefing paper published

A briefing paper by the CASCADE project has been published that examines the policy and interests of seven countries in South Asia with respect to the seven thematic societal challenges identified under the EU’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme: Health, demographic change and wellbeing; Food security, sustainable agricultures, marine and maritime research and the bio-based economy; Clean and efficient energy; Smart, green and integrated transport; Climate action, resource efficiency and raw materials; A changing world - inclusive, innovative and reflective societies; and, Secure societies - protecting freedom and security of the country and its citizens.

This paper draws upon the findings of seven national position papers (Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka) and one South Asian regional position paper developed as part of the CASCADE project (see Reference list).

The paper can be downloaded from the website media centre.

Inventory of national and regional stakeholders developed

A second objective of the CASCADE project was to identify and develop an inventory of the national and regional stakeholders that can influence the societal challenges and research priorities relevant to the South Asian region.

Hemanthi Goonasekara from the Federation of Sri Lankan Local Government Authorities in Sri Lanka led this activity.

The development of the inventory and mapping were a collaborative process of research, debate, and discussion that drew from multiple perspectives to determine a key list of stakeholders at the national and regional level and their extent of stake in the seven societal challenges in terms of power and interest.

Identification of stakeholders was conducted simultaneously with the Phase 1 (Policy and trend analysis of societal challenges in South Asia partner countries) and Phase 2 (Interviews and Focus groups with experts who have the knowledge and experiences in one/ several areas of social challenges in South Asia partner countries) of WP2 of the project. Guidance on identifying key stakeholders was provided for the South Asia partners during the second partner meeting held in Sri Lanka in January 2014.

The identified stakeholders were those that offer a broad range of STI input linking to the Horizon 2020 societal challenges and that can influence the global challenges and research priorities relevant to the South Asian region.

Thereafter, stakeholder identification and mapping protocols were discussed in detail with the South Asia partners during a workshop conducted in conjunction with the third partner meeting held in Maldives in July 2014. At the end of the workshop, a template was introduced to present the stakeholder inventory and conduct the mapping exercise. A power vs interest analysis was conducted in relation to each identified stakeholder in mapping their stake in societal challenges.

A copy of the work package report and the inventory can be downloaded from the media centre.

Third CASCADE newsletter published

The third CASCADE newsletter is now available to download from the media centre. The newsletter includes updates from the work packages, as well as details of recent and upcoming events.

Regional position paper published

The CASCADE regional position has been published and is now available for download from the media centre. The regional paper draws together the findings from the seven national position papers developed by the South Asian partners, and identifies regional position paper that identifies global challenges and research priorities of mutual interest to the EU and South Asia.

The paper directly addresses the seven societal challenges addressed by Horizon 2020: Health, demographic change and well-being; Food security, sustainable agricultures, marine and maritime research and the bio-based economy; Secure, clean and efficient energy; Smart, green and integrated transport; Climate action, resource efficiency and raw materials; A changing world, inclusive innovative and reflective societies; Secure societies.

The paper considers the current status of the South Asian region in respect of these issues, the priorites for action, and finally, those areas that offer the most potential for EU-South Asia cooperation. The idenfied opportunities include:
1. Detection and prevention of NCDs / infectious diseases
2. Demographic changes – (ageing population, youth), increase support, demography and innovation, design, environmental changes
3. Exploit ocean - promote bio-economy, economically viable ecosystems and services, and community based entrepreneurship
4. Harness hydro, wind, solar, biomass and other renewables (knowledge exchange of renewable technologies)
5. Disaster risk reduction, including related information systems – big data
6. Integration of climate change adaptation within national policies and planning
7. Early warning, monitoring of chronic climate change, preparedness and mitigation towards increased resilience
8. Greater inclusivity (including participation of women & youth and consideration of the vulnerable, internationalisation, employment)
9. Improve social harmonisation among diverse populations
10. Low cost, carbon neutral green transport
11. Tackling border security (trafficking, crime, surveillance) and cyber crime

CASCADE findings presented in Brussels

The major findings from the CASCADE project were presented at an open briefing event at the UK Research Office in Brussels. The event, held on 9th March, was attended by over 25 representatives from European and South Asian government agencies, as well as fundings bodies and other research groups.

The event was held to raise awareness about the project and the opportunities for research and innovation collaboration between the EU and South Asia.

The agenda focused on messages for the region – our specific experiences and feedback. These included:
Regional priorities for EU-South Asia cooperation to address societal challenges
South Asian national and regional stakeholders related to societal challenges
Engaging South Asian partners in Horizon 2020 - Policy relevant results

The session was facilitated by the Lead Investigator, Professor Dilanthi Amaratunga from the University of Huddersfield in UK, her colleague, Professor Richard Haigh, also from the University of Huddersfield who led the development of the regional paper, and Dr Champika Liyanage, from the University of Central Lancashire in the UK, who was responsible for coordinating preperation of the seven national position papers in South Asia.

A copy of the presentation materials made available on the day can be download from the CASCADE media centre.

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