Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KICs)
First Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KICs):
*Please note that the detailed call for proposals will be published in the Official Journal of the European Union (early April) and will equally be available through the EIT website.
Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KICs) bring together the three elements of the knowledge triangle and are excellence-driven partnerships between universities, research organisations, companies and other innovation stakeholders. Although KICs are not yet being selected (this process will start in Spring 2009), some basic concepts relating to the KICs are outlined below:
The KICs will promote the production, dissemination and exploitation of new knowledge products and best practices in the innovation sector, transforming the results of higher education and research activities into commercially exploitable innovation. The obligatory inclusion of the business and higher education dimensions will ensure a constant focus on delivering and disseminating usable outcomes.
In return, participating research and education organisations will benefit from the prestige and visibility of the EIT, increasing their capacity to attract the best possible talents ("brain-gain").
KICs will be highly integrated partnerships, building on existing partnerships between partners or centres. The proposals may be trans- or interdisciplinary and may incorporate programs or projects already in place through Europe. These will be selected by the Governing Board based on competitive, transparent and excellence-driven criteria for periods of seven to fifteen years, in order to ensure mid- to long-term sustainability of the chosen partnerships. This time-frame may be adapted according to their development needs.
They shall have substantial overall autonomy to define their internal organisation and composition, as well as their precise agenda and working methods. In particular, KICs shall aim to be open to new members from Europe - and beyond - whenever these members add value to the partnerships. However, the minimum condition to form a KIC is the participation of at least three partner organisations, established in at least two different European Member States.
In view of its long-term development perspective, the EIT will follow a gradual approach in establishing the KICs. In a first phase, two or three KICs will be selected; subsequent partnerships will follow after the adoption of the first Strategic Innovation Agenda.
The first two or three KICs will address themes within the following fields:
- - Sustainable energy
- - Mitigation and adaptation of climate change
- - Future information society
- Future KICs will address other topical themes in research such as healthcare.
The mission of the EIT is to explore excellence in entrepreneurship, education, research and business for world class innovation. In view of making the EIT operational, a top priority for the Governing Board is the selection of the first two or three (KICs) by January 2010. A clear vision on their future shape is therefore essential for the lasting success of the entire initiative, and for boosting Europe's innovation capacity in a sustainable way. The EIT Governing Board is convinced that such a vision – as well as its successful implementation – can only be achieved through meaningful and substantial dialogue with all the relevant stakeholders from the very outset. Thus, the first EIT seminar is being held in Bratislava on 24th of November.