EU countries agree on steps to attract and retain research talent

EU member states agreed on measures to make research careers more attractive and to foster better working conditions for researchers.

The political agreement reached by the Council of the EU on the final text of the Recommendation on a European framework to attract and retain research, innovation and entrepreneurial talents in Europe is a key element strengthening the European Research Area (ERA), in line with the most committed action of the ERA Policy Agenda 2022-2024.

This follows the Commission proposal on 13 July 2023 and is a crucial step to make research careers in Europe more attractive and sustainable. These measures will foster better working conditions for researchers in all sectors, including academia, business, industry and the public administration.

The Council Recommendation and the new Charter for Researchers put a special focus on young and early-career researchers, to ensure they benefit from measures and incentives that can facilitate employability and careers and to attract more students and graduates to careers in research. The document also lays the grounds for making Europe an attractive destination for talents from around the world, which is crucial to respond to all societal challenges and to increase Europe’s competitiveness on the global arena.

The new framework will be important to support innovation talents, in line with the Commission Communication on a New European Innovation Agenda, which aims to create and commercialize breakthrough technologies to place Europe at the forefront of the upcoming wave of deep tech innovation.

Several instruments have already been developed or will be launched in the coming months to support the implementation of the Council Recommendation and the new Charter for Researchers, including EURAXESS, an ERA Talent Platform that will be a one-stop-shop for researchers, an observatory on research and innovation careers, and RESAVER as an important pension solution for mobile researchers. In addition, the Commission has recently announced the launch of a mutual learning exercise, whereby Member States will be able to share good practices in support of better research careers. A pilot call currently developed under the WIDERA part of Horizon Europe, and expected in 2024, will also play an important role by fostering cooperation between public and private actors from the different sectors with the aim to improve working conditions and employability, notably for early-career researchers, at the level of the partner organisations.


The Council Recommendation on a European framework to attract and retain research, innovation and entrepreneurial talents in Europe is a key action of action 4 of the ERA Policy Agenda 2022-2024 on “promoting attractive and sustainable research careers, balanced talent circulation and international, transdisciplinary and inter-sectoral mobility across the ERA”. It is also in line with the 2020 Commission Communication on ‘A New ERA for Research and Innovation’ and the Council Conclusions of May 2021 on ‘Deepening the European Research Area: Providing researchers with attractive and sustainable careers and working conditions and making brain circulation a reality’.

Following this political agreement by Member States, the official publication of the Council Recommendation is expected in the coming days.

Source: European Commission | Researcha and Innovation (