COPRAS Open Meeting Report - Executive Summary

Full Text of the Open Meeting Report (PDF)

In order to discuss its findings and deliverables with its main groups of stakeholders, towards the end of its lifespan, the Cooperation Platform for Research and Standards organized a conference on research and standardization towards FP7. The conference, for which more than 200 participants registered and featured speakers as well as delegates from all constituencies (e.g. the research and standards communities, larger companies and SMEs, and the European Commission), was held 17 January 2007 at the Bedford Hotel in Brussels.

The 12 invited speakers addressed a variety of issues that have to be taken into account in considering the relationship between research and standards. These include the importance of standardization in bringing research results to the market, the barriers research projects encounter when trying to interface with standards bodies, the importance of timing in research/standards interfacing processes, the marking challenge ahead of standards organizations, and the need for continued support in the FP7 programme to further improve the cooperation between projects and standards bodies.

At the end of the conference, COPRAS presented a brief overview of one of its main deliverables, the Standardization Guidelines, that are available in document format as well as in interactive format. These were developed as a first step to support and improve research/ICT standards interfacing in FP7. In addition, a discussion between the conference audience and a panel of representatives from all stakeholders to the research/standards interfacing process, revealed a number of additional issues that should be addressed, either by research projects, by the standards community, or by the European Commission. The main conclusions from the conference are:

Taking into account these conclusions, and translating them into concrete recommendations against the background of COPRAS’ experiences and achievements in FP6, the following 5 points emerge:

  1. Results achieved so far are not a panacea for all issues that lie ahead. Additional (horizontal) support actions in FP7 should build upon the COPRAS achievements in FP6;
  2. Standards organizations should put more effort into marketing the benefits of standards and standardization, and will specifically have to emphasize their communication to SMEs;
  3. To encourage the global uptake of European standards an active policy is needed and specific arrangements need to be made to encourage relevant projects to pass their output through European standards organizations;
  4. European research programmes should acknowledge the fact that research and standardization cannot always proceed in parallel, and therefore should provide mechanisms that enable projects to acquire additional resources in situations where standards work exceeds a project’s lifespan;
  5. Specific tools will be necessary to help projects finding those standards and standards organizations most relevant to their activities, and to provide clarity on the background to and processes adopted by individual standards organizations.

Rigo Wenning, Bert Bos
modified: $Date: 2007/02/09 10:03:58 $