In building the CVCE.eu digital research infrastructure on European integration, the Centre pursues the following high-level principles:
Innovation and sustainability
The CVCE law (art. 2) provides for the establishment of a relevant research infrastructure on European integration based on innovative concepts and technology and guaranteeing at the same time the operation and sustainability of it. This mandate emphasises the importance of the sustainability of research outputs and also demonstrates that they are part of a larger thematic and methodological concept. The absence of a reliable, operational and long-term environment for project results (including data, publications, software, tools and services) is currently one of the major drawbacks in “making sense” out of ICT-based methods and tools in HSS. Since the CVCE.eu research infrastructure is being built in an emerging field, innovation is taking place at all levels of development.
A cross-disciplinary and cross-sector approach
European integration studies is at the heart of the CVCE.eu research infrastructure. It is an interdisciplinary field combining contemporary history, law, political science and economics. Analysing source material and publishing in a digital environment while developing new publication models and analytical tools results in a cross-disciplinary approach that incorporates computer science, engineering and information science. At the same time the centre acts as an editor and publisher, adding cross-sector aspects to the work carried out (including multimedia production, multilingual aspects and copyright issues). By integrating current trends, the centre is helping to blur the boundaries between academia, heritage institutions (as holders of source material), publishers and technology providers. Based on this integrated approach, the centre engages in the production of new and innovative types of research outputs which are not limited to monographs and scientific articles but also include software, tools, enriched (smart) databases, enhanced publications, algorithms, teaching modules, etc.
Collaboration and engagement
Collaboration between researchers and experts in or outside the centre and with academic or non-academic institutions at national or international level is an essential part of the CVCE.eu research infrastructure, notably in the fields of European studies and digital technologies. As well as addressing the scientific communities, the centre engages with the teaching and lifelong learning communities as well as with society at large. In a digital environment, the lines between researchers, domain experts, citizen scientists, between users and producers are blurred. The CVCE.eu research infrastructure interacts with its target communities at various levels, including expert/crowd-sourcing and participation in competitive projects. As a corollary, the CVCE is involved in the development of high-quality research outputs that are relevant in a scientific and societal context.
Scientific and technical quality is an essential principle in building the CVCE.eu research infrastructure since it fosters a high level of trust in the centre’s outputs. The centre invests in the transparency of its research and documentation process and the development of well-performing, relevant services and tools. Quality assurance and control procedures (e.g. peer review and other forms of assessment) are an integral part of building the CVCE.eu research infrastructure. The Committee of Experts, whose composition reflects the cross-disciplinary and cross-sector nature of the centre, supports and assures this commitment to quality at different levels (e.g. by setting up external peer-review committees for its ePublications).