PACE-Net Plus bi-regional platform: Pathways to Innovation in the Pacific Region

General objective

With this bi-regional dialogue platform, PACE-Net Plus will present a strategy to support the official recognition of the fundamental importance of STI in the sustainable development of Pacific Island Countries; PACE-Net Plus will also propose concrete joint activities to strengthen the STI cooperation between EU and the Pacific Region, thus contributing to policy dialogue between the two regions.

The main outcomes of the project activities will be delivered to the policy makers in the Pacific (State of the art of STI in the Pacific; thematic Think Tanks relating to Horizon 2020 societal challenges; surveys on Innovation and pathways to innovation in the Pacific; and results of the seed funding initiatives on STI). The participants will also discuss the policy recommendations that have been elaborated in the framework of the project, to promote the bi-regional cooperation in STI between Europe and the Pacific.


PACE-Net Plus is the second project funded by the European Commission to further support the institutional bi-regional policy dialogue in Science and Technology between the Pacific Region and the European Union; strengthen the bi-regional cooperation in STI, notably through Horizon 2020 (the European Union’s framework programme dedicated to research and innovation). Launched in September 2013, the project brings together 16 members, from the Pacific region and the EU.

The opportunities for European and Pacific researchers to collaborate are many and diverse. During the last two years, PACE-Net Plus has organised 8 think-tanks, which sought to update and identify research priorities, innovation areas, and to develop preliminary ideas for joint initiatives and activities for EU-Pacific STI cooperation. To date for example, PACE-Net Plus, strongly advocates for a future project dedicated to strengthening the Observation systems of Climate change and its Impacts in the Pacific, serving also the global approach of a changing climate.

PACE-Net Plus supports the EU-Pacific policy dialogue in STI, including dialogue on innovation issues. Indeed, the world economy continuously poses new challenges to innovation in developing and emerging countries: the rise of information and communication technologies, the development of global value chains, and the increased importance of some countries in the global innovation system. Today a key challenge for innovation policy in developing and emerging countries is to exploit these new opportunities and at the same time to support innovation, addressing major social challenges and generate inclusive growth. This is why the project promotes the idea of innovation as an essential platform for tackling global challenges responds to the objectives of the Europe 2020 strategy and its Innovation Union Flagship initiative.

In addition, the project encourages the coordination between STI programmes and policies from the EU and its Member States targeting the Pacific, by promoting the implementation of joint actions, such as a future large research call, based on a significant seed-funding scheme designed to ease the access of the PICTs to H2020.

Finally, as strengthening the bi-regional dialogue in STI, is a a core component of PACE-Net Plus and a key step towards achieving increased EU-Pacific collaboration to address the societal challenges, the project will during this platform strongly advocate pathways for a Pacific regional strategy on STI, as well for the building of the relevant organisation to make this dialogue between the EU and Pacific Region sustainable.

Platform preliminary agenda

Day 1: Project outcomes

  • Official opening
  • Summary of project outcomes: Research directory, Bibliometric analysis, Think Tanks, Indicators on PACE-Net Plus)
  • Seed-Funding (scheme and presentation of selected initiatives)
  • Cocktail dinner

Day 2: Regional and bi-regional dialogue

  • Outcomes of innovation activities (regional surveys, group consultations, case-studies etc.) and discussion on pathways to innovation
  • Policy dialogue: beyond PACE-Net Plus (STI task force / regional & bi regional dialogue + funding scheme + Observatory systems of Climate Change)
  • Film on PACE-Net Plus
  • Closing dinner

Target audience (approx. 100 delegates from Pacific/European countries)

  • EU and EC representatives
  • Policy makers and senior officials from governments from the Pacific
  • Senior officials from regional organisations including the Council of Regional Organisations in the Pacific
  • Senior scientists and academics (Pacific Island Universities Research Network-PIURN, Regional University Network-RUN etc. representatives)
  • Non-governmental organisations
  • Representatives of the public and private sectors
  • Representatives of funding organisations
Sheikh Izzal Azid
The University of the South Pacific
Faculty of Science and Technology and Environment
Phone: (+679) 32 32859
Fax: (+679) 32 31416
Prof. Jean-François Marini
PACE-Net Plus coordinator
Institut de Recherche pour le Développement
BP A5 - 98848 Noumea (New Caledonia)
Phone: +687 26 07 47
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