Stay in the loop! Subscribe to our mailing list

Knowledge as the ‘fifth’ community freedom?

The European Commission is proposing a symbolic expansion of the four community freedoms: free movement of goods, labour, capital, and services. Its vision is to push Europe's knowledge potential by securing knowledge firmly at the heart of society and as fifth Community freedom.
Through a Green Paper on "The European Research Area: New Perspectives," the Commission recognises the challenges posed to Europe by underinvestment in and fragmentation of research. Better generation and use of knowledge is crucial if the EU is to achieve its economic, social and environmental ambitions, as outlined in the Lisbon Strategy for Growth and Jobs. The Green Paper is set out along 6 main axes:
  • adequate flow of competent researchers;
  • world class research infrastructures;
  • excellent research institutions, engaged in effective public-private co-operation;
  • effective knowledge-sharing notably between public research and industry, as well as with the public at large;
  • well-coordinated research programmes & priorities;
  • opening the European Research Area to the world with special emphasis on neighbouring countries.
There will be an on-line public consultation on the issues in the Green Paper open until August 2007. Contributions will be used in the design of concrete actions for the development of the European Research Area, to be put forward from 2008. Public consultation
Commissioner's website