Position Papers

Plan S - A contribution from the Social Sciences and Humanities scientific community

In response to the consultation on Plan S, EASSH has submitted a paper and some key recommendations for the implementation task force.

In the paper, EASSH recognises Plan S overall principles to make available and affordable the results and publications of publicly funded research. However, we raise concerns about the implementation and its timetable, which could hamper European research for years to come and we flag possible unintended adverse effects on the next generation of scholars in Europe. 

We address three main areas of concern: (a) quality and licences; (b) impact on European scholars’ career in a fair and competitive international research system; (c) infrastructures and OA platforms (including impact on learned societies). We propose a set of recommendations to facilitate the next phase of implementation. 

Horizon Europe negotiations: EASSH calls for a strong SSH research access

In view of the Council of Europe and Parliamentary discussion on the EU proposal for Horizon Europe, EASSH has submitted the following recommendations:

  • A budget which demonstrates the EUs commitment to the excellence pillar (especially ERC and MCSA) and a more balanced redistribution of funding across the clusters, as EASSH demonstrated that all research in societal challenges costs the same. In particular, better resources for cluster 2 which addresses key issues at the heart of the EU citizens like democracy and social transformation.
  • More intervention areas per cluster that are driven by relevant social and humanities research perspectives and pursue social solutions rather than just technical ones. It remains extremely important to monitor the contribution from all the research fields, including Social Sciences and Humanities
  • A stronger social dimension in the EIC
  • Maintain and strengthen an SSH expert cluster management in R&I and a better access to be given to academics and experts in SSH in all aspects of the Horizon Europe implementation processes

In the paper on the Assessment of Horizon 2020 Implementation, the ITRE Committee has recognised that Social Sciences and Humanities research is fundamental for addressing many of the most pressing societal challenges oftoday, which should feature in the planning for the Horizon Europe. The Committee also recognised the value added of SSH research for an holistic approach to research across the current challenges, which draws on the widest set of expertise and reaffirmed its commitment to ensuring that research on society and the social impact of research are better integrated in Horizon Europe.

We trust that the European Parliament and the Member States will continue to pursue its support to the research that matters to the EU citizens.

Horizon 2020: Struggling with Interdisciplinarity. The 3rd SSH Integration Monitor Report Reveals the Truth about Top Down Interdisciplinarity (June 2018)

If we take the integration of Social Sciences and Humanities as the best effort to foster interdisciplinarity in Horizon 2020, the third EC monitoring report demonstrates that largely the programme is struggling with the implementation of the interdisciplinarity approach.  Read our analysis in the latest position paper.

All FP9 Global Challenges must be more equally resourced

EASSH calls for equity in investment in research and innovation across all the challenges of the 9th Framework Programme and for the ‘cluster’ on human-social dimensions to be recognised as of equal importance to the investments in technological solutions. In this paper, we suggest that the real driver of research costs is scientific methods, which are no longer specific to a given set of disciplines and scientific enquiries. See EASSH analysis.