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WIREs Energy Environ.
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EU governance for research and training in nuclear fission: from knowledge creation to competence building

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In a rapidly changing world, research and training (R&T) in nuclear fission and radiation protection is faced with a number of scientific‐technological and sociopolitical challenges that require a new type of governance. In the European Union (EU), those challenges are, for example, technological developments aimed at optimizing the role of nuclear fission in the energy mix and the related processes for knowledge creation and competence building. The main stakeholders of Euratom R&T programmes have developed a common approach regarding the needs, vision, and implementation instruments. Focussing on education and training (E&T), the common approach of the nuclear fission stakeholders can be summarized as follows: Analysis of the needs of society and industry: e.g., what kind of knowledge, skills, and competences should be taught to continuously improve safety (technology and culture)? Convergence toward a common vision: e.g., toward a new governance for Euratom aiming to develop scientific and organizational excellence in all parts of the EU. Development of common instruments: e.g., synergy of national and Euratom E&T programmes for lifelong learning and cross‐border mobility (freedom of establishment). The above approach is aligned with the Europe 2020 strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. It is shown how a new European governance structure is developing, based on improved participation, openness, accountability, effectiveness, and coherence. As a result, a new way of ‘developing/teaching science’ is proposed, closer to the end users, with the ultimate aim to develop robust, equitable, and socially acceptable energy systems. WIREs Energy Environ 2014, 3:604–617. doi: 10.1002/wene.126 This article is categorized under: Nuclear Power > Science and Materials

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