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Positive evaluation of the strategic research areas BECC and MERGE

In 2010-2014 43 the Swedish government funded the 43 strategic research areas (SRA’s). During 2014 the SRA’s was evaluated. The research environments BECC and MERGE are two of the evaluated SRA's, both environments are coordinated at CEC. Today the evaluation, together with recommendations for the future, was announced and the resultis positive for both research environments. BECC is also one of four highlighted SRAs out of the 9 situated at Lund University.
SRA evaluation finished

About BECC in the evaluation

  • Performance: Excellent/good
  • Strategy: Excellent/good
  • Added value: Good

“This is an SRA which focus on the effects of climate change on natural resources, ecosystem services and biodiversity that utilises genuine collaboration between LU (78%) and University of Gothenburg (22%). The number and quality of their publications is impressive, with a high percentage of their papers in the top 10% and top 1% most cited papers in the World of Science. These papers address the needs of society in Sweden and internationally. The SRA funding has been used to create a common research environment that can contribute to important research questions. The SRA has a board that supports their development by ensuring a strategic allocation of the funding. There is also a stakeholder panel which oversees and guide the research programme and a communication office that has helped facilitate the translation of the science for the public.

There are excellent networks established with agriculturalists and foresters, science and technology in the industry, government policymakers and relevant international bodies. There is a good integration of the research with education at Masters, PhD and Post-doctoral levels and a joint graduate training programme. The programme is well organized with a strong strategy and solid management framework and infrastructure for effective development.”

About MERGE in the evaluation

  • Performance: Good
  • Strategy: Good
  • Added value: Good

“This SRA, which focus on modeling regional and global earth systems is led by LU and involves four other universities (CTH, KTH, GU and Linnaeus University) and the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI). Through increasing recruitment this SRA is building the critical mass in Earth system science. The added value is obvious through synergistic interactions and interdisciplinary work between the partners. There are an impressive number of publications that are reaching international standards in quality.

Stakeholder engagement is a strong point, and impact is emerging through global and regional climate models for mitigation of and adaptation to climate change. A Swedish climate adaptation portal uses information from this SRA. Doctoral training within KlimLU attracts students from all over Sweden and internationally, adding an element of much needed mobility. The research school is innovative and foster trans-disciplinary knowledge.”

About the evaluation

The Swedish Research Council (Vetenskapsrådet), the Swedish Council for Working Life and Social Research (FAS now Forte), the Swedish Research Council for Environment, Agricultural Sciences and Spatial Planning (Formas), the Swedish Energy Agency (Energimyndigheten), and the Swedish Agency for Innovation Systems (VINNOVA) was responsible for carrying out the evaluation. External reviewers as well as an expert panel conducted the evaluation.

Read more

Read more in the evaluation report, the acronym EffnatLU stands for BECC and KlimLU for MERGE. You can find BECC’s statements on page 34 (short) and 103 (long), and MERGE’s statements on page 35 (short) and 108 (long).

Link to Evaluation of the Strategic Research Area Initiative 2010-2014 (open evaluation pdf)

You can also find the recommendations from the authorities here (information in Swedish from Vetenskapsrådet).

Read the press release about the evaluation here (information in Swedish from Vetenskapsrådet)


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Centre for Environmental and Climate Research, CEC

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223 62 Lund, Sweden

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