Panel discussions on measuring the impact of European innovation policy cooperation initiatives
On 19 January some 35 coordinators and reflection group members of the INNO-Nets under the PRO INNO Europe® initiative, external experts, members of the INNO-Learning Platform as well as Commission representatives and Member State representatives from the CIP/EIP Management Committee met in Brussels to discuss how best to measure the performance and impacts stemming from European innovation policy cooperation initiatives. In the morning, viewpoints on the EPISIS, TACTICS and INNO-Partnering Forum initiatives were exchanged, and in the afternoon it was the turn for possible future policy initiatives currently under preparation in the areas of creative industry and space-based services.
The purpose of the meeting was to review, at an early stage in the lifecycle of European cooperation projects, what output and possible leverage effects could stem from such projects and which would be appropriate impact and performance indicators for monitoring the outcome of the projects.
Based on the exchanges of views between the participants, the following conclusions emerged:
- Successful impact measurement starts with clear objectives. An agreement on well defined objectives to be pursued is therefore a prerequisite to elaborate appropriate performance and impact indicators. A sound management of the initiative is also needed to keep the project on track and maximise its impact. This means to put in place a learning mechanism that would not only assess the outcome ex-post but also monitor progress over time with clear milestones to be watched and regular review meetings. An agreement on each of these steps between the Commission services and the project consortium was therefore recommended.
- Project monitoring and impact measurement may result in a complex set of indicators which could imply a heavy burden for project management. Instead, a limited number of key indicators should be considered with the possibility to establish a composite indicator to monitor whether the project is overall on track or not.
- Taking into account the reports prepared in support of the meeting and the discussions on the specific cases of each project, it was agreed that the consortiums would further reflect on the identification of appropriate performance indicators and monitoring mechanisms for their respective initiative. The Commission services invited the consortiums to document this measurement and learning strategy via an amendment to the contract and to finalise this process by the summer time.
The presentations and background material prepared in support of the meeting are available here: 1)Presentations 2)Background documents