ENVIMPACT Survey about dissemination and exploitation practices of RTD results from researchers

Published 07 May 2012      
The Envimpact survey had been conducted through direct contacts per email, interviews and telephone as well as online through a web-tool specially designed in this project with the purpose of facilitating the researchers an easy participation in the survey.

The promotion was done primarily by the project partners, but other relative institutions (EEN network, cooperation partners etc.) have promoted as well the survey. As results we have up to now a participation of 350 organizations well balanced between the CEE and the EU15 countries.

The participation from countries shows a concentration in the countries directly participating in the project but is also extended to neighbor countries (Baltic countries, Mediterranean area, Holland, etc). Following diagram shows the real participation up to April 2012:

The survey has been used as a basis for the SWOT analysis done in the project. It had a first block of questions related to the kind or organization participating in the survey and the rest was oriented to the exploitation and dissemination practices of the participants. Only researchers having participated in a RTD project in the areas addressed in ENVIMPACT (air pollution, chemical pollution and environmental technologies) have been invited to participate, and the questions of the survey were mostly linked to one project.

Since ENVIMPACT has researchers as a target group (vs. SMEs in PROCEED), it is not surprising that 92% of the answers come from universities and research centers and that research is normally very relevant in these organizations:

Further, all 3 technology sectors addressed in the project are well represented in the project with a major participation of environmental technologies:

Most of the participating researches (95%) had experience with EU projects, but less than a half had experience as project coordinator.
We can observe a high concentration of the organizations (in this case also persons) coordinating EU projects whereas the participation as partner is much more broad. In following diagram we can see the different experience of the participating persons:

Although 61% of the projects represented in the survey were initiated by the researchers answering the survey, only 43% were coordinated by them. This indicates a tendency in looking for more experienced teams in EU project management for the coordination of the projects. 85% of the teams were built among partners that already had experience in cooperating with each other, room for new contacts remaining only for 15% of the cases.

Almost half of the projects had SMEs as participants (49%), being almost always end-users. In a further 15% of the cases there were end users in the projects that were not SMEs. The kind of results achieved was quite balanced, mostly the participants gained know how, but also new processes, improved products, training material etc. On the other hand, a big majority of all projects participating in the survey had an exploitation plan in the description of work (73%), even though many of them had no SME end-users directly participating in the consortium. Also, as shown in the diagrams below, almost all projects had budget foreseen for dissemination (82%)

The analysis of the most used distribution channels shows that the internet (web) together with publication in papers, personal contacts and conferences are the most effective dissemination channels. Following chart shows the distribution of the most effective channels (the researchers have given 4 and 5 points to these channels, 0 meaning less effective and 5 most effective):

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