Toolkit to help mitigate foreign interference in research and innovation

21. June 2022 Higher EducationStudiesResearcher
Tackling R&I foreign interference
This publication outlines best practices to support EU higher education institutions and research performing organisations in safeguarding their fundamental values, including academic freedom, integrity and institutional autonomy, as well as to protect their staff, students, research findings and assets.

International networks in the field of academic and technological cooperation play an essential role in the search for solutions to global challenges. Accordingly, the European Union is focusing on the internationalization of research and innovation. At the same time, there are a number of risks and challenges associated with collaborations - such as foreign influence - that must be considered by research and innovation actors. Such influence occurs when covert, fraudulent, or corrupting activities are carried out by or on behalf of a foreign state actor that run counter to the sovereignty, values, and interests of the European Union.

The document „Tackling R&I Foreign Interference“ provides European universities and research institutions with a toolkit to develop a comprehensive strategy for dealing with these risks and challenges when working with international partners. It addresses the four key areas of values, governance, partnerships and cybersecurity. To this end, the document provides measures for awareness, prevention, response, and recovery, and emphasizes a balance between risk mitigation and resilience building.

The publication has been produced in collaboration with Member States and research and innovation stakeholders, and contributes to the actions of the European Research Area policy agenda on academic freedom.

Further information
•    European Commission (18.01.2022): Commission publishes a toolkit to help mitigate foreign interference in research and innovation