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The leverage effect of photonics technologies on the European economy : the European Perspective

Report/Study: 29/04/2011 - 02:00
This study was carried out by TNO (NL) in collaboration with the Photonics and Plastic Electronics Knowledge Transfer Network (UK) and Technologia (UK). The study concludes that the European photonics industry, with a share of 21% of the global photonics market and annual growth rates of around 10%, lies at the basis of significant business opportunities and value creation as well as highly qualified jobs in Europe.

Six main photonics technology value chains, 8 major photonics-enabled industries and 11 final markets  were analysed. The study estimates that today already about 20-30% of the European economy and 10% of the European workforce depend on photonics as a key enabling technology. The study also identifies the challenges and threats faced by European photonics industry over the next 10 years through global competition, particularly from Far East countries, the shrinking supply of qualified researchers, engineers and technicians as a direct consequence of the ageing society, and a lack of volume manufacturing in Europe, which could weaken the link between photonics R&D and industry in the longer term. The study concludes that an enhanced policy focus on sustainability and greening would positively support innovation in the photonics industry and enabled markets.

Full text of the study

European Commission > Photonics and Organic Electronics website