Amaratunga, Dilanthi, Haigh, Richard, Liyanage, Champika and Hettiarachchi, Sam (2015) South Asia and societal challenges : a regional perspective. In: Proceedings of the 8th International Conference of Faculty of Architecture Research Unit (FARU). University of Moratuwa, Colombo, Sri Lanka, pp. 25-40. ISBN 978-955- 9027- 53-9

This paper is a summary of the South Asian region’s status and interests concerning the seven thematic societal challenges identified under the EU’s Horizon 2020 research programme: Health, demographic change and wellbeing; Food security, sustainable agricultures, marine and maritime research and the bio-based economy; Clean and efficient energy; Smart, green and integrated transport; Climate action, resource efficiency and raw materials; A changing world - inclusive, innovative and reflective societies; and, Secure societies - protecting freedom and security of the country and its citizens.
This paper considers the position of seven countries in South Asia: Afghanistan; Bangladesh; Bhutan; Maldives; Nepal; Pakistan; and, Sri Lanka1. It also identifies national and regional priorities for the seven themes under consideration.
This paper is an output of the CASCADE project (Collaborative Action towards Societal Challenges through Awareness, Development, and Education) that aims to provide the foundation for a future International Cooperation Network programme targeting South Asian Countries, which will promote bi-regional coordination of Science & Technology cooperation.
The EU recognise a need to strengthen internationalisation through strategic policy action. The need for linkages with Asian countries has been highlighted given the region’s rapidly growing research and innovation capacities and the urgency to address global challenges.
The project coincides with the launch of Horizon 2020, a Europe 2020 flagship initiative aimed at securing Europe’s global competitiveness. Running from 2014 to 2020 with a budget of just over €80 billion, the EU’s new programme for research and innovation is part of the drive to tackle global societal challenges, and create new growth and jobs. International cooperation in research and innovation is an essential element for meeting the objectives of Europe 2020. Recognising the global nature of producing and using knowledge, Horizon 2020 builds on the success of international cooperation in previous framework programmes and is fully open to participation from third countries.

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