Methodology of Scientific Activity in CDTA

As any Research Center aiming into the development of technologies for the ultimate benefit of the society, CDTA operates its research according to two complementary directions:

I. The Buttom-Up direction

I-1. The three-year program

It is the traditional direction of CDTA as it allows accumulating the knowledge and the know-how, especially for young researchers. The permanent research team is the corner stone in this way as it holds all the skills of the whole Center in a particular discipline. The scientific team preserves both the scientific potential of the Center and the equipment used in research which requires a high degree of expertise. As such, the permanent team plays the keys role of the substrate supporting research issues identification and their handling as research projects. Those projects often target applications even when they are directly implemented, the research and valuation effort through scientific publishing and communicating allows after a few years a better apprehension of the project problematic, particularly when the tasks necessitate experiments. In one word, the three-year research program, defined by the researchers themselves, thus coming from the base, gains in the long run in maturity and capability to handle societal and economic real issues. As those relating to water, energy, public health, environment, etc. This program is funded on the proper Center budget.

I-2. The research and development program with socio-economic impact

Still researchers with more proved expertise, which enables them to anticipate real economic issues and social needs, can initiate projects within the frame of this program to develop more mature solutions through a research directed only for technology development. Those projects hold the potential of initiating start-ups or subsidiaries companies incubated into CDTA. They provide an opportunity to strengthen real expertise on a given issue.
The partnerships which come to CDTA are preferentially directed to the holders of those projects. The General Directorate of Scientific Research and Technological Development funds them directly through a special program.

II. The Top-Down direction

Given its traditions of research and development dating back more than thirty years, CDTA is starting to drain public and private partners, often for a pointed problem. When the partner is in difficulty to identify ways and means of tying up his needs, CDTA offers the possibility to assist in the constitution of technical specifications through a joint working group. Once this step is got over, a contracting relationship is implemented, where deadlines and deliverables are clearly pointed out. Often, the most experienced researchers, engineers and technicians are involved in those projects, funded directly by partners.

At present, CDTA is operating with a bouquet including these three types of projects where partnership represents about 20 % of the whole.