BECC a Strategic research area (SRA)
The Government bill on research and innovation in 2008 proposed increased support for strategic research areas. 24 research areas were considered strategic for Swedish competitiveness and growth. The Swedish Research Council (Vetenskapsrådet, VR), Swedish Council for Working Life and Social Research (FORTE, earlier called FAS), Swedish Research Council for Environment, Agricultural Sciences, and Spatial Planning (Formas), Swedish Energy Agency (Energimyndigheten), and Swedish Governmental Agency for Innovation Systems (VINNOVA) was commissioned to organize, review and recommend the allocation of funds to Swedish universities in 20 of these research areas.
The Government followed the agencies' recommendations and decided to allocate research funding. Forty-three research environments in 20 research areas started in 2010. Three criterias was important to become a strategic research area:
- research that, in the long term, has the prerequisites to be of the highest international quality
- research that can contribute towards fulfilling major needs and solving important problems in society
- research in areas that have a connection with the Swedish business sector.
Evaluation of Strategic Research Areas 2014
During 2014 all SRAs were evaluated according to plan. For BECC's part the evaluation was very positive.
Evaluation statement BECC
“This is an SRA which focus on the effects of climate change on natural resources, ecosystem services and biodiversity that utilises genuine collaboration between LU (78%) and University of Gothenburg (22%). The number and quality of their publications is impressive, with a high percentage of their papers in the top 10% and top 1% most cited papers in the World of Science. These papers address the needs of society in Sweden and internationally. The SRA funding has been used to create a common research environment that can contribute to important research questions. The SRA has a board that supports their development by ensuring a strategic allocation of the funding. There is also a stakeholder panel which oversees and guide the research programme and a communication office that has helped facilitate the translation of the science for the public.
There are excellent networks establishedwith agriculturalists and foresters, science and technology in the industry, government policymakers and relevant international bodies. There is a good integration of the research with education at Masters, PhD and Post-doctoral levels and a joint graduate training programme. The programme is well organized with a strong strategy and solid management framework and infrastructure for effective development.”