The CARE-C Centre of Excellence (CoE), stemming from “Eastern Mediterranean Middle East – Climate and Atmosphere Research” Project (EMME-CARE, H2020 GA no.856612), will be embedded into the legal structure of CyI, but will have full autonomy in any of its executive decisions as well as in defining its Research and Innovation agenda. This autonomy is already in place in every research centre of CyI and has shown to be a key driver for the rapid development and the competitiveness of these centres.
CARE-C will retain this well-defined level of autonomy through the institution of the Management Board that will oversee the operations of the Centre, as illustrated in the figure.
The Management Board is the ultimate decision-making body of the Consortium and Center, with full oversight of and responsibility for the operations of the centre. The Management Board will make decisions on budget, recruitment and internal affairs and will report directly to CREF. It reports directly to the CyI President and has the prerogative to safeguard the independent-decision making capacity of the centre in the implementation of its R&I agenda, operational and administrative policy and of its educational activities. The management board will approve the hiring of senior scientific and technical personnel for the centre and will approve and monitor the implementation of the centre’s annual budget.
The General Assembly acts is the body comprising of all the centre’s employees (researchers, technical experts, administrative and support staff), with an appointed representative to the MB every two years. It is a body that will ensure the smooth development of the Research Center, offering equally to all the CyI employees working in EMME-CARE the possibility to express their opinions (and share ideas) on the ways to improve the working environment of the Research Centre, thus providing a participatory element. Administrative information (budgets, recruitments, internal policies) will also be presented and explained during the meetings of the GA to further enhance transparency.
The Management Board of the centre is advised and aided by an international panel of experts (SEP) with expertise related to the centre’s activity. Built on the existing CyI research centre model, the SEP will have competencies in the research and innovation topics covered by the four R&I departments. SEP will also address issues related to diversity, gender, integrity, and GDPR. Every year, the SEP will go through an in-depth evaluation of the performance (KPIs) and objectives of the centre in general and more specifically for each R&I department. The SEP will be composed of atmosphere and climate experts already engaged in the EEWRC SEP, while additional members will be appointed by the CyI Scientific Advisory Council with additional expertise (e.g. innovation) and international dimension.
The International Policy Advisory Board (IPAB) will support the new centre in its endeavours to promote and structure an active dialogue between the scientific community of CARE-C and regional and international policy makers on the development of transnational solutions. Composed of leading regional and international policy makers, stakeholders, and opinion-formers, the IPAB will facilitate the transfer of new regionally focussed scientific knowledge of the impact of climate change and support its translation into current and future national interests and policies.
The Coordinator of the EMME-CARE Project, Prof. Jean Sciare is currently the interim Director for a maximum period of two (2) years, until the relevant competitive recruitment process is completed.
The Director reports to the Management Board of the CoE and it’s Chair. The Director is appointed for a five (5)-year term (renewable) and bears the responsibility for leading, planning, implementing strategy, and managing the functioning and operation of the centre. In close collaboration with the heads of the different research and innovation departments, the Director defines the research, innovation and educational strategic planning of the centre for review by the Scientific Expert Panel and for final approval by the Management Board.
The Director is also responsible for drawing up the yearly budget of the centre, submitting it for approval to the Management Board, and overseeing its implementation. Finally, the Director reviews information on the progress of the Center projects, including the EMME-CARE project, according to the frequency defined in the Grant Agreements, examine that information to assess the compliance and, if necessary, propose modifications of the Consortium Plans to the Management Board.
The CoE will be operated by the Research and Innovation Support Operations (RISO). According to the Grant Agreement, the Administrative Offices to be established within RISO are: Project Management, Human Resources, IT, Communication & Outreach, Finance & Accounts, Procurement, Physical Infrastructure, Innovation & Business Development, Grants & Tenders Writing.
Operating at the interface between the CYI administration and the new CoE, RISO will contribute to the fast and efficient establishment of the Centre, improve its overall smooth operation by facilitating the workflow with CYI. Therefore, RISO will be structured to enable it to respond in the most efficient way to the CoE’s specific needs, and safeguard its capacity for taking autonomous decisions. This structure encompasses and incorporates “best practices” as implemented by the Advanced Partners, with the goal of reflecting the attributes of a high-performing research organizations, while maintaining a versatile and flexible mode of operation, adapting to the evolving needs and autonomy of the new CoE.
Recognizing the need to build regionally oriented scientific knowledge on climate change impacts and better integrate current and future national interests and policies on the topic, EMME-CARE has established a Regional Professorship Programme with a view of developing a Mediterranean and Middle Eastern science and policy strategy on climate change.
EMME-CARE aims to engage the key regional players through co-funding a tenured faculty position, within leading regional Universities or Research Centers, and supporting research activities on climate change to be pursued collaboratively between their organization and the Cyprus Institute.
Partners EMME-CARE has already engaged with in the context of its Professorship Program includes the following: