Stay in the loop! Subscribe to our mailing list

France: Research law approved

The law proposal on research has finally been adopted by the Assemblée Nationale on 4th April, two years after its original drafting. The Minister Delegate of Education and Research, François Goulard, stated that this law will strengthen France’s position in European research and increase its competitiveness. This law foresees:

  • An increase of the research budget from 19,9 billion euros in 2005 to 24 billion euros in 2010
  • the setting up of a High Council for Science and Technology and a National Agency for Research
  • a multiannual staff employment plan, with a decrease of hours researchers devote to teaching
  • a more transparent and international evaluation system of universities, laboratories and researchers
  • the setting up of several structures (poles of research and research thematic campuses) which would strengthen cooperation between research centres

Despite Mr. Goulard’s enthusiasm, the new law did not receive a warm welcome by French researchers and the left-wing parties, who complain that approximately one third of the new money comes in the form of tax deductions for industry, therefore only a reduced percentage of the funds go to research in universities and public research laboratories, and that private research will receive increased support when, according to researchers, public research should have been a bigger concern. Despite having lobbied for the establishment of a High Council for Science and Technology, researchers have now also mixed feelings towards it, as it is not fully clear how independent it will be.

Pacte pour la recherche - Ministry website
Sauvons la recherche - Researchers movement