Institute for Prospective Technological Studies

The Institute for Prospective Technological Studies (IPTS), located in Seville, Spain, is one of the seven institutes of the Joint Research Centre (JRC), a Directorate-General of the European Commission (EC).

Fields of expertiseEdit

The IPTS provides prospective technoeconomic analysis in support of the European Union policymaking process. The prime objectives of the institute are to monitor and analyse science and technology developments, their cross sectoral impacts, their interrelationship with the socio-economic context and their implications for future European policy development. The institute operates international networks, pools the expertise of high level advisors and presents information in a timely and synthetic fashion to policy makers.[citation needed]

The Institute's main competences consist in providing policy option analysis and policy impact assessment, analysing the socio-economics of new technologies, delivering techno-economic tools and platforms to their customers, and managing information exchange and consensus-building among policy-makers and stakeholder on highly complex techno-economic issues.

The Institute's activities mainly contribute to the conception and development of EU policies, but some IPTS projects also support the monitoring and implementation phases of the policy cycle. IPTS research focuses on policy challenges of strategic importance to the European Union.

The Institute's work programme cover the fields of research policy and techno-economic foresight, sustainable development, industrial and clean technologies, energy, transport, agriculture and rural development, life sciences and the information society.


Its first project was ESTO, the European Science and Technology Observatory, which after some 10 years of work, developed into two new networks:

  • ERAWATCH Network, a web-based service that presents information on national research policies, actors, organisations, programmes; and
  • ETEPS Network (European Techno Economic Policy Support Network), a network of European organisations that operates in all 27 EU Member States, covering policy subjects such as agriculture, consumer protection, energy, environment, enterprise, health, information society, innovation, research, and transport.

The Institute also co-develops the POLES energy model,[1] with the French research institute LEPII and the consulting firm Enerdata.

Other JRC sitesEdit

See alsoEdit


External linksEdit