The session wishes to highlight with practical examples by FP-7 funded projects and other initiatives the significance of Europe’s space systems for EU-science, research and innovation dynamics. Representatives of the European Network NEREUS1 and representatives of relevant European institutions are going to debate how European space systems can contribute as a vital tool to advance in the different societal challenges of Horizon2020 and thus serve European society. The emphasis of the NEREUS-network is on the use of space technologies and provides its members with a dynamic platform to mobilize projects, share experience and knowledge and raise awareness for the regional dimension of space applications. Several EU-projects have been mobilized on the NEREUS-platform and speak for themselves.
In numerous ways satellite data and services bring an added value to all six societal challenges2
and pave the way to more knowledge and a wider insight. To quote just a few examples, Galileo
is fundamental to develop innovative transport solutions, Earth Observation/Copernicus-data brings an immense treasure of information to research activities in areas such as climate change, health, agriculture, marine and maritime, raw materials, energy. A recent study on the economic benefits of Copernicus showed that 1 Euro invested in the system brings up to 10 Euros back to the European society in terms of economic benefits, in addition to strategic advantages which cannot be accounted for. The science community is a key beneficiary of space-based information. The session wishes to call for a close linkage between the different columns of the Horizon2020, in particular of bringing the dimension of space into the topics of the societal challenges. In particular with both space systems growing increasingly mature, establishing synergies to societal challenges are crucial to ensure an optimal exploitation and capitalization of these systems for Europe’s research endeavors.