Missions could be a powerful way to create measurable impact, with a transformative potential for science, industry and society. To solve the global challenges of our time, part of the answer could be a mission-oriented approach in FP9 for R&I. Professor Mariana Mazzucato was asked by Research, Science and innovation Commissioner Carlos Moedas to advise him on missions. On 22 February 2018, prof. Mazzucato presented her report on missions. A call for feedback has been opened by the Commission until 3 April 2018 to collects views from stakeholders on future research and innovation missions.

The report describes the rationale for EU level research and innovation missions, the concept as well as key criteria to select missions and important considerations for their successful implementation. According to prof. Mazzucato, missions should meet five criteria:

1. A mission should be able to involve a broad range of people in current public debate;
2. Missions should have clearly defined, measurable goals that are reached within a certain time period;
3. A mission should be ambitious, but achievable, and needs to involve the entire innovation chain;
4. Missions should be multidisciplinary and cross-sectoral, and invite private actors to invest;
5. A mission is clear about the expected outcome, but leaves room for various bottom-up solutions.

An example of how a mission could be worded to meet these criteria is ‘100 CO2-neutral cities in 2030’.


At first glance, the rationale behind the mission concept, the criteria for selecting missions as well as the highlighted key issues for implementation set out in the report, reflect very well what JPI HDHL stands for. Food drives us (human body, citizens, society, economy) and faces us with societal challenges like an alarming rise of people who are overweight and unsustainable dietary choices.
While investments in research and innovation are necessary to deliver the knowledge base needed to come to solutions, alignment with policy objectives at the level of the EU and Member States are key. In particular, the engagement of JPI HDHL in Food2030 through the H2020 funded project Fit4Food2030 will support JPI HDHL in bridging R&I activities towards policy objectives and engagement of citizens.