This low and declining growth rate is a symptom of our failure to adapt to globalisation and technological changes. Professor Sapir warned that the process of European integration is at risk if European governments do not comprehend that growth is a sine qua non condition for the sustainability of the European social model and for the success of present and future enlargements. The Lisbon agenda, he added, was a good attempt at trying to rectify Europe's shortcomings.
However, although the goals are ambitious enough, what is lacking is sufficiently ambitious means. Professor Sapir also called for a drastic reorganisation of the EU budget by decreasing the budget presently devoted to agriculture and increasing the budget for economic growth by per cent. It is simply not forward looking enough. If Lisbon is the priority then you need to be rational and put in the budget and the instruments necessary to make it happen.
We must be forward looking too,' said the professor.
Philippe Agion, professor at he University of Harvard emphasised the need for Europe to focus spending on third level education as opposed to primary and secondary, as has been the case until now. Furthermore it should also be based on peer evaluation and the selection of evaluators, which must be based on ranking and scientific standing, should be transparent and public,' said Professor Agion.
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