Estonia belongs among the founder members of ERIC project
The European Commission confirmed the status of Estonia as a founder member at the project of European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) European Social Survey (ESS). The European social survey is a project coordinated in Estonia by the scientists of the University of Tartu, which surveys the social attitude of people in changing Europe. There are 14 other countries among the founder members as well.
“Creation of legal basis of ERIC and application mechanisms by the European Commission is a very needed step as this makes it possible to establish large international research infrastructures in Europe, the creation of which was not enabled by national or international legislation. ESS ERIC is a good example of mutual cooperation between the European countries,” said Marco Kirm, Vice Rector for Research at the University of Tartu.
The coordinator of European social survey in Estonia, Senior Research Fellow in Sociology and Social Policy at the University of Tartu, Mare Ainsaar said that Pan-European comparative research surveys are of strategic importance for developing the generalization of Social Sciences. “ESS is distinguished from many other comparative projects by commitment to the usage and development of high-quality standardised methodology. As a result, ESS may be considered as one of the best data collections in the world at the moment, which makes comparison possible between the countries, and which combines both principal and methodological quality,” said Ainsaar.
The countries related to the data collection can be a more efficient partner for the leading institutions of the European Union and obtain comparative information about different member states, which allows us to rely more on research when making decisions.
According to Ainsaar, Estonia plans to develop the application of the data collection in two directions: to increase competitiveness of Estonian researchers and the results in top research field by means of the data collection and the services related to it, and to carry out application analyses for improving the socio-economic possibilities that Estonia is facing, and for developing cooperation between researchers and public sector, designers of politics, private sector. “Participating in networks related to the data collection makes it possible for the researchers of Estonia to have access to international resources. Special attention is paid to reflection of the topics significant for Estonia and to cooperation between Estonian researchers and other institutions in carrying out analyses related to the data collection,” Ainsar added.