The private sector has long experience in BCA production and has an accurate vision of the main difficulties and barriers to the use of biological control. However, private sector staff has limited knowledge and practice of new tools and concepts to be used. Public research institutes have recently developed know-how about such new tools, have progressed in the study of biocontrol agent populations, but their research is insufficiently adapted to respond to the needs of biocontrol firms. Overall, the extent of communication between private and public sector is insufficient. Past sporadic experiences of collaborations have proved insufficient to boost the competitiveness of the sector, highlighting the need of revisiting the cooperation modalities.
In this project, public and private staff will work together. They will merge to constitute mixed R&D teams, working directly in the production facilities of the firms. These tight interactions will homogenize the know-how and points of view. To reach this aim, part of enterprise R&D staff will dedicate its working time to COLBICS. Staff from the public institutes will be seconded to the enterprise to bring the competences needed to complete the actions.
COLBICS main objective is quite straightforward. It aims at improving the state of art in terms of public/private interactions. The research networks involving both the commercial and non commercial sectors will:
- Foster co-operation between non-commercial research organisations & commercial enterprises based on joint research projects;
- Stimulate long-term collaboration between sectors through secondments of researchers between the public & private research domains;
- Provide diverse career possibilities & research experience for researchers, knowledge sharing/cultural exchange.