Following the mid-term evaluation of the SIRICs (SIte de Recherche Intégrée sur le Cancer), the scientific committee of the French National Cancer Institute (INCa) underlines in its scientific report 2020, the significant role of the SIRICs in cancer research in France.

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In response to the recommendations of the Second Cancer Plan 2009-2013, INCa has introduced since 2011 a competitive labelling of integrated cancer research sites (SIRIC). Their objective is to provide new operational conditions for translational cancer research in order to:

  • optimise and accelerate the production of new knowledge
  • promote their dissemination and application in the treatment of cancers

Since 2017, following the second wave of accreditation, 8 SIRICs have been accredited for 5 years, including the SIRIC ILIAD.

A mid-term review of SIRICs

INCa has thus organised a mid-term evaluation in 2020, assessing the progress and achievements of the SIRICs for the first labelling period, from January 2018 to June 2020. At the beginning of 2022, INCa published its 2020 Scientific Report, presenting, among other things, the conclusions of the scientific committee on this mid-term evaluation of the SIRICs.

The Scientific Evaluation Committee (SEC) underlined the important role played by SIRICs in cancer research in France.

This international SEC, composed of 11 experts in different fields and disciplines, also recognised the “great success” of SIRICs:

The SIRICs have considerably improved the quality of the organisation of cancer research, the production of knowledge and the transfer of innovation into care practice and organisation.

The SIRIC programme has facilitated the consideration of the different dimensions of research (basic, clinical, public health, epidemiology and human and social sciences), leading to significant advances in the conduct of integrated multidisciplinary research in oncology.

The future of SIRICs

As the second wave of labelling is coming to an end, INCa will soon start the third wave for the period 2023-2027, taking into account the recommendations of the SEC and the results of this mid-term evaluation.

The International Scientific Committee recognises the importance of the SIRIC programme, centres of excellence for translational research in France, and supports its renewal in a stronger and better endowed form.

Among its suggestions for improvement, the SEC proposes increasing cooperation while reducing competition between SIRICs:

  • Allocate a significant proportion to inter-SIRIC initiatives, which would reduce competition between SIRICs, increase their cooperation and strengthen interactions in cancer research between centres with complementary and non-overlapping expertise in France
  • Consider new periodic calls for applications for potential new SIRIC centres to reduce competition between centres

This new 2023 labelling campaign will also take into account the new landscape and recent developments in French cancer research, as well as the priorities of the ten-year strategy 2021-2030.

Rendez-vous in the second quarter of 2022, when the new call for applications should be published on the INCa website.

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