European Liaison Office of the German Research Organisations

Societal Challenges

Food Security, Sustainable Agriculture and Forestry, Marine, Maritime and Inland Water Research, and the Bio-economy 2018-2020


Specific aspects:

The present work programme of Societal Challenge 2 must be considered in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the COP 21 Paris Climate Agreement. Many of the topics refer explicitely to individual SDGs and/or climate goals.

Furthermore, the activities should help implement important EU policies and initiatives such as the EU Common Agricultural Policy and European Innovation Partnership for Agricultural Productivity and Sustainability (EIP AGRI), the EU Bioeconomy Strategy, the Circular Economy Package, the EU Integrated Maritime Policy and the EU Common Fisheries Policy.

A number of topics in the three calls contribute to the  Focus Areas "Low Carbon", "Circular Economy" and "Digitisation", which are implemente across the different Societal Challenges.

As many of the challenges addressed in this Work Programme are of global nature, international cooperation is an important aspect of implementation. In the area of “Sustainable Food Security” the support for flagships initiatives with China and Africa on Food and Nutrition Security and Sustainable Agriculture will be continued. In the area of „Blue Growth“ a flagship initiative for the South Atlantic Ocean, paving the way towards an 'All Atlantic Ocean Research Alliance', as well as a flagship on the “Future of Seas and Oceans” will be launched, and the cooperation with partners in other regions such as the Baltic Sea and the North Sea, the Mediterranean and the Black Sea reinforced.

Several topics include a suggestion for coordination between projects financed under the same or related topics. Such coordination allows organising clusters of projects working on similar issues, to avoid duplication of efforts and to enable cross-fertilisation and synergies.