Tuesday, 6 January 2009

EU Law: Supplementary research programmes

In addition to the general European Community (European Union) Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development (now FP7) and the specific programmes implementing it – Cooperation, Ideas, People, Capacities and the Joint Research Council – there exists an option to agree on supplementary programmes involving the participation of certain Member States only.

We are reminded of this optional instrument both at treaty level and by the secondary legislation concerning the FP7, running from 1 January 2007 to 31 December 2013.

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Article 168 TEC

Article 168 (ex Article 130k) of the Treaty establishing the European Community (TEC) concerns supplementary programmes for research and technological development involving only some member states.

The supplementary programmes are primarily financed by the participating states. The Council decides on rules with regard to dissemination of knowledge and access by other member states.

The current Article 168 of the Treaty establishing the European Community (TEC), as published in the latest consolidated version of the treaties, OJEU 29.12.2006 C 321 E/122:

(TITLE XVIII
RESEARCH AND TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENT)

Article 168 TEC

In implementing the multiannual framework programme, supplementary programmes may be decided on involving the participation of certain Member States only, which shall finance them subject to possible Community participation.

The Council shall adopt the rules applicable to supplementary programmes, particularly as regards the dissemination of knowledge and access by other Member States.


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Original Lisbon Treaty (ToL)

Article 2, point 140 of the Lisbon Treaty amended Article 168 TEC (OJEU 17.12.2007 C 306/86):

140) In Article 168, second paragraph, the words ‘the Council’ shall be replaced by ‘the Union’.


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Renumbering the Treaty of Lisbon (ToL)

The Table of equivalences of the original Treaty of Lisbon tells us that Title XVIII first became Title XVIII with the addition of space in the TFEU (ToL), and later renumbered Title XIX Research and technological development and space in the consolidated version.

Article 168 TEC initially became Article 168 TFEU (ToL) before the renumbering of the treaty made it into Article 184 TFEU in the consolidated version of the Lisbon Treaty (OJEU 17.12.2007 C 306/217–218).


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Lisbon Treaty consolidated

Article 184 TFEU

After one specific amendments and renumbering Article 184 TFEU appears like this in the consolidated version of the Treaty of Lisbon (OJEU 9.5.2008 C 115/130):

(TITLE XIX
RESEARCH AND TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENT AND SPACE)

Article 184 TFEU
(ex Article 168 TEC)

In implementing the multiannual framework programme, supplementary programmes may be decided on involving the participation of certain Member States only, which shall finance them subject to possible Union participation.

The Union shall adopt the rules applicable to supplementary programmes, particularly as regards the dissemination of knowledge and access by other Member States.


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FP7 – Seventh Framework Programme (2007–2013)

Having looked at the treaty level, we move on to supplementary research programmes in practice.

Decision No 1982/2006/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 December 2006 concerning the Seventh Framework Programme of the European Community for research, technological development and demonstration activities (2007-2013), published in OJEU 30.12.2006 L 412/1, is available here:

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2006:412:0001:0041:EN:PDF

Although the treaty provision on supplementary programmes has its historical roots and causes, including limited use, here we are interested in the possible existence of such EU research programmes.

Recital 26 of the FP7 Decision 1982/2006 refers to supplementary programmes:

(26) Implementation of the Seventh Framework Programme may give rise to supplementary programmes involving the participation of certain Member States only, the participation of the Community in programmes undertaken by several Member States, or the setting up of joint undertakings or other arrangements within the meaning of Articles 168, 169 and 171 of the Treaty.


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In other words, the FP7 Decision treats supplementary research programmes as a potential instrument.


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Rules on supplementary programmes?

Is the text of the FP7 Decision Recital 26 just a reminder of an existing optional instrument, or are there more detailed rules in existence governing the use of supplementary programmes?


The rules for participation and for dissemination of research results are set out in Regulation (EC) No 1906/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 December 2006 laying down the rules for the participation of undertakings, research centres and universities in actions under the Seventh Framework Programme and for the dissemination of research results (2007-2013), published OJEU 30.12.2006 L 391/1:

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2006:391:0001:0018:EN:PDF


I found no mention of supplementary research programmes in Regulation 1906/2006. This indicates that the treaty provision sets the legal framework for the potential use of supplementary programmes. The legal act or acts would probably be drafted according to the objectives, the participants and other circumstances, drawing on existing EC (EU) research Decisions, Regulations and practices.

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Specific programmes

The Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development (FP7) is implemented through specific programmes. The possibility of supplementary programmes is mentioned in the context of the FP7 or the specific programme in question, but we leave it to the interested reader to dig more deeply.

Note that the specific programmes initially published have been corrected and the corrigenda published in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) 22 February 2007 L 54. The links in earlier posts have been replaced below.


Cooperation programme

COUNCIL DECISION 2006/971/EC of 19 December 2006 concerning the Specific Programme "Cooperation" implementing the Seventh Framework Programme of the European Community for research, technological development and demonstration activities (2007 to 2013), initially published OJEU 30.12.2006 L 400/86. The corrigendum OJEU 22.2.2007 L 54/30 is available here:

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2007:054:0030:0080:EN:PDF

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Ideas programme

COUNCIL DECISION 2006/972/EC of 19 December 2006 concerning the specific programme: "Ideas" implementing the Seventh Framework Programme of the European Community for research, technological development and demonstration activities (2007 to 2013), initially published in OJEU 30.12.2006 L 400/243. The corrigendum OJEU 22.2.2007 L 54/81 is available here:

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2007:054:0081:0090:EN:PDF



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People programme


COUNCIL DECISION 2006/973/EC of 19 December 2006 concerning the specific programme "People" implementing the Seventh Framework Programme of the European Community for research, technological development and demonstration activities (2007 to 2013), was initially published in OJEU 2006 L 400. Here is a link to the corrigendum OJEU 22.2.2007 L 54/91:

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2007:054:0091:0100:EN:PDF




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Capacities programme

COUNCIL DECISION 2006/974/EC of 19 December 2006 on the Specific Programme: "Capacities" implementing the Seventh Framework Programme of the European Community for research, technological development and demonstration activities (2007 to 2013), initially published OJEU 30.12.2006 L 400/299. The corrigendum OJEU 22.2.2007 L 54/101 is available here:

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2007:054:0101:0125:EN:PDF



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Joint Research Centre


COUNCIL DECISION 2006/975/EC of 19 December 2006 concerning the Specific Programme to be carried out by means of direct actions by the Joint Research Centre under the Seventh Framework Programme of the European Community for research, technological development and demonstration activities (2007 to 2013), initially published OJEU 30.12.2006 L 400/368. The corrigendum OJEU 22.2.2007 L 54/126 is available here:

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2007:054:0126:0138:EN:PDF


Ralf Grahn