Prime is a network of excellence to develop long-term research and shared infrastructures on policies for research and innovation in the move towards the European Research Area (ERA). PRIME gathers 51 institutions representing 65 research groups from 19 countries. Some 200 researchers are active in its activities and over 200 doctoral students have been mobilised by its training activities.
Prime is now in its fifth and last year of activity, focusing mostly on the academic and policy-oriented dissemination and a large number of results-oriented events (see 2008 agenda and highlights). It is the result of a progressive learning process which we shall reflect upon in our last annual conference. Its roles and effects have been monitored by an independent 3 persons body, the Characterisation Group, which has delivered its main conclusions in July 2008 looking at structural changes. This was important for us since we wanted to learn both on ourselves but also on NoE as a new policy instrument. A final feature lies in the governance structure developed with very specific features as compared to many other NoEs.