Wirtschaftsprofessorin, Nationale und Kapodistrias Universität Athen

Lena TSIPOURI„1. Framework Programmes have, over the years contributed significantly not only to the new knowledge they helped create, but also to modernising research processes through their emphasis on networking and transnational cooperation leading to cross-fertilisation and value added. Some worries arise, however, from the very high success rates reported in past evaluations: low failure rates undermine the rationale of public intervention and may imply a low likelihood for disruptive innovation.

2. Focusing on Societal Challenges distinguishes the EU from other major research-intensive countries. Efforts to join forces globally for addressing together societal challenges through the international cooperation programmes distinguishes the EU from countries that are focusing exclusively in research for the sake of productivity growth.

3. Regarding Horizon Europe:

  • The EU has now adopted the start-up narrative; entrepreneurship is becoming a social value and is widely supported, yet the most successful start-ups (gazelles and unicorns) globalise early and often migrate to the US. Supporting them to globalise without migrating their most valuable functions (headquarters and sales) is an issue for future innovation policy.
  • Mission-orientation can make a difference, but it will not deliver the expected results unless coupled with failure tolerance and risk management.


Lena J. TSIPOURI is Professor of Economics at the University of Athens, Department of Economic Sciences and senior researcher in the Centre of Financial Studies. She studied in the universities of Athens, Vienna and obtained her PhD in the University of Paris II. She undertook postdoctoral research with a Fulbright Fellowship at MIT and was more recently a visiting scholar at Berkeley, California studying the local ecosystem.

Professor Tsipouri’s main research interest is in Economic Development, Entrepreneurship and Economics of Technological Change with particular emphasis in the areas of research and innovation policy, regional development and economic cohesion. She has published extensively in the areas of regional innovation and has over 25 years of experience in developing and managing international research and innovation projects. Her consulting work focuses on policy design, implementation and evaluation for EU institutions, Governments and Regional Authorities in Europe, Asia and the Americas, the OECD and the UN. She has been (and still is) chair or member of high level advisory groups.