The presence of French researchers in international networks and of foreign researchers in France is particularly encouraged in order to optimize the competitiveness of French and European research on the international scene and promote research for development. France also strives to strengthen partnerships with industrialized countries in key sectors of research and innovation, while high-level scientific programs are also developed with major emerging countries.
The MAEE’s actions are part of an inter-ministerial strategy and are carried out in close collaboration with the French Ministry of Higher Education and Research. While public institutions (universities, grandes écoles, research organizations, establishment conferences) help define and conduct projects, the private sector will become increasingly involved in these partnerships. Among the bilateral scientific programs, the Hubert Curien Partnerships (PHC) are particularly noteworthy. Around 60 of these partnerships are currently underway. Project selection criteria include scientific quality, innovation and the training received by participants. PHCs have a significant “lever effect,” as they enable French laboratories to subsequently position themselves in response to European calls for tender in research.
Cooperation actions are co-financed by certain regions as part of the ARCUS program (regional action for academic and scientific cooperation). Such actions are often interdisciplinary.
The integration of French universities within international networks as well as the harmonization of university degrees within Europe make it easier for French students to study abroad. One of the goals is for all French students to receive part of their training outside of France, by capitalizing on the myriad opportunities offered by European study abroad programs such as ERASMUS, but also through partnerships between French and foreign establishments.
Updated in December 2010