The European target set out in the Lisbon Strategy is to bring investment in research and development (R&D) to 3% of GDP by 2010. To achieve this goal, Belgium encourages companies to invest in research and innovation, both of which are engines of growth and employment.
The Research and Development sector (R&D) is primarily organised on a regional basis, although the Federal Public Service Economy, SMEs, Self-Employed and Energy encourages activities in this area.
The federal level remains active in the areas of data collection, the calculation of indicators, and policy-making through the Belgian Federal Science Policy Office (BELSPO).
The communities are also responsible for research and development at the higher education level (universities, colleges and independent university research centres).
The registered collective research centres contribute to the dissemination and integration of emerging technologies throughout Belgium's industrial fabric and are thus essential to our economic expansion.
Alongside R&D, innovation is essential for businesses to develop and stay competitive.
Intellectual property must be protected to encourage research.
The Unit for Production and Analysis of R&D Indicators at the Belgian Federal Science Policy Office (BELSPO) is the source for all research-related statistics in Belgium. The bodies listed above should be consulted for regional or community statistics.