“This is the first time we are collecting national figures this way in the fields of climate and the environment. These are extremely important research areas, a fact which is also stressed in the Government's long-term plan for research and higher education,” says Arvid Hallén, Director General of the Research Council of Norway.
In light of the high degree of overlap between research groups conducting environmental, climate and polar research, the compilation of data will be coordinated to save time in processing responses.
Follow-up of national R&D strategies and Long-term plan for research
This mapping effort follows up the objectives set out in the national Miljø21 and Klima21 R&D strategies on climate and the environment, respectively, and will be included in a time-series data set.
The Long-term plan for research and higher education adopted by the Storting (parliament) last autumn included an increase of allocations to research and development in the areas of the environment and the climate, among others. The overview will provide a baseline for 2014 needed to measure the effect of the escalation in funding.
In spring 2016 the Government will present a new white paper on Svalbard. Research is a key activity for Svalbard and is likely to be a significant area of focus in the upcoming white paper. Activities in connection with the new polar research overview will be based on the same model used to compile previous overviews in this area.
Universal response encouraged
The research community and the relevant companies have been asked to submit their responses by 15 September at the latest. A high rate of response is a critical factor behind producing a reliable knowledge base for these three areas, and for measuring the effect of the national increase of research on climate and the environment.
The Nordic Institute for Studies in Innovation, Research and Education (NIFU) is compiling the overview and carrying out the analyses on behalf of the Research Council. NIFU has extensive experience with this type of activity and is also responsible for national statistics and indicators for R&D and innovation.