Mazzucato’s work has emphasised the need for Europe to use investment-led and innovation-led policies to tackle the Eurozone problem. She has highlighted the way in which weaker EU countries—like Portugal, Spain and Italy—have been negatively affected by their lack of strategic spending on key drivers of productivity: education, research, and training. Even with mild deficits, debt/GDP can increase due to lagging growth—making the dynamics of long-term investment, not the deficit, the key concern. (See articles below).
Professor Mazzucato has advised and discussed her work with leading policymakers and Europe-wide institutions. Carlos Moedas (European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation) said in a speech (at the Central European Conference on Energy Union, 1 December 2016):
“We need more science. More research. More innovation. I believe that, in innovation and research, the role of the Member States and the Union are essential… As Mariana Mazzucato says: Innovation-led growth is not just about fixing a market failure but also about setting direction and creating new markets. If you just tackle the market failure you can head into the wrong direction. Now, the question is what Europe's role is in all of this."
In September 2016, Professor Mazzucato spoke at the Energy Union's Integrated Research, Innovation and Competitiveness Strategy (EURICS) High-Level Stakeholder event, on how best to support the EU's jobs and growth in the context of the Paris Agreement. Titled ‘Research, innovation and competitiveness challenges and how to effectively address them’, where Carlos Moedas gave the keynote address.
Mazzucato has also been invited by the European Investment Bank to give a seminar, ‘The Entrepreneurial State and the Role of Public Banks’, and discuss her work with a number of high-level EIB executives in March 2016.
Mazzucato has also recently been a member of two high-level EU task forces advising on innovation and smart, sustainable economic growth, including RISE (Research, Innovation, and Science Policy Experts – formerly known as i4g) for which she has written several reports, including Smart and Inclusive Growth: reforming the risk-reward nexus in innovation.
Working with the European Space Agency, Professor Mazzucato recently co-authored a report – ‘Market Creation and the European Space Agency’ (published November 2016) – and gave a keynote speech on ‘Creating and shaping a mission-oriented space economy’ at the ESA Space for Inspiration Conference, London (14 September 2016).
Professor Mazzucato was previously a member of The Public Sector Innovation Group, whose final report Powering European Public Sector Innovation: Towards a New Architecture was published in 2013. She was also a Commissioner for the Centre for European Reform’s commission on the UK & the EU single market; its final report, “The Economic consequences of leaving the EU”, was published in June 2014.
She has recently been awarded two large grants from the EU Horizon 2020 initiative. The first, ‘DOLFINS- Distributed Global Financial Systems for Society’, is a cross-institution partnership aiming to address the global challenge of improving the financial system to better serve society, by placing scientific evidence and citizen participation at the centre of the policy process in finance.
The second, ISIGrowth – Innovation-fuelled, Sustainable, Inclusive Growth – led by the University of Pisa – will examine the relationship between innovation, employment dynamics and growth in an increasingly globalised, financialised economy. The project aims to develop comprehensive policy recommendations across areas including innovation policy, fiscal policy, industrial policy, education policy and cohesion policy to achieve smart, sustainable and inclusive growth.
Her research project, FINNOV (Finance, Innovation & Growth) (2009 – 2012) was a 3-year EC-funded research project that studied the relationship between financial markets and the real economy, with an emphasis on how finance can support innovation and long term, inclusive, sustainable economic growth. It was featured on the EC website as a “ success story”.
Professor Mazzucato has written regularly in the media about the Eurozone, focussing on the need for investment led growth for the Financial Times, the Guardian, La Repubblica and others.