Science with and for Society: new European Commission report on H2020 achievements and recommendations for Horizon Europe


21 July 2020


On 21 July 2020, the European Commission published the report “Science with and for Society in Horizon 2020: Achievements and Recommendations for Horizon Europe” with the objective of conveying the achievements of the Science with and for Society (SWAFS) part of Horizon 2020, stemming from funded projects and key activities. The report also aims to serve as input for the preparation of the Horizon Europe programme implementation.

The report covers the diverse actions funded under the SWAFS part of H2020, such as research ethics and integrity; science education; science careers; gender equality; institutional changes towards Responsible Research and Innovation; citizen science and citizen engagement; open access, and science communication.

The main goals of science education projects include boosting the participation rates of young people in STEM with a view to encouraging long-term careers in these fields. Science education projects produced a range of ready-to-use material for students (online lessons, an online encyclopaedia and a range of apps) and teachers (repositories and tool-kits encompassing practical tips to support their teaching). With schools at the heart of science education, a number of projects are developing an open schooling model to facilitate outreach to the local community.

Since the Commission’s ERA Communication of 2012, gender equality as a priority has strengthened progressively. Three objectives were identified: gender equality in careers at all levels; gender equality in decision making; integration of the gender dimension into Research and Innovation (R&I) content. To achieve these objectives the EC has devised a comprehensive strategy to support national reforms and foster an institutional change within research funding and research-performing organisations, including universities, through the implementation of gender equality plans (GEP), supported under SwafS. DEUSTO GEARING-Roles project is an example of a H2020 project aiming to answer these objectives.

Citizen science can make science more socially relevant, accelerate and enable production of new scientific knowledge, increase public awareness about science and ownership of policy making, as well as increase the prevalence of evidence-based policy making. The 22 projects funded under this part of the SwafS portfolio are categorised as ‘deepening the evidence base, practice and training on co-design and co-creation’ (6 projects) and ‘doing citizen science’ (16 projects).

For further information, please consult this page.