The Competitiveness and Innovation Programme will provide a framework for the Networked Observatory on Eco-Innovation, which will act as a knowledge resource for policy makers, business and finance.
The Networked Observatory on Eco-Innovation will be set up to act as a knowledge resource on eco-innovation. It was initially mentioned as an initiative in the May 2007 Environmental Technologies Action Plan (ETAP) report. The concept was also discussed at the ETAP High-Level Working Group's meetings in March and September 2007.
The network will compile and disseminate essential and up-to-date analyses of environmental technologies and eco-innovation markets. It will incorporate statistical analyses on a country-by-country basis, and will also provide similar market-by-market information. In addition to producing market and special interest studies, it will provide a comprehensive insight into the latest innovation, technology and financial developments.
The Networked Observatory will rely on established projects and networks, as well as the output of some of the key observation institutes across Europe. The framework for this initiative will be provided by that of the Competitiveness and Innovation Programme (CIP).
Apart from providing the framework the CIP will also act as a financial support system to the Observatory's activities. This support will come under the remit of the Europe INNOVA initiative, and will consist of funding of €2 million over three years for up to 95% of eligible cost. Although normally the Enterprise and Industry DG coordinates the Europe INNOVA initiative and oversees the call for projects, this project will differ slightly as it will be the sole responsibility of the Environment DG, and will receive its funding from the 'eco-innovation' allocation of the CIP.
As part of Europe INNOVA's call for projects, the Eco-Innovation Observatory will be included specifically as horizontal support action to a new European Innovation Platform on eco-innovation. The specific purpose of the Platform is to speed up eco-innovations by developing tools for effective financing and public-private co-operation at a national, local and EU level. The objective of the Networked Observatory will be to compile relevant data and perform analysis on future market and technology trends. It will monitor significant developments in financing in this sector, while also recording the situation of innovation development in the Member States. In addition, it will provide a knowledge base particularly attuned to the needs of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
One important element of the Networked Observatory will be the production of an annual report on eco-innovation. This report will be made available on-line, and will cover a range of topics, such as:
An overview of issues, trends and opportunities in the sector;
A review of environmental technology markets in the EU and worldwide;
A progress report on the evolution of relevant measures and indicators;
An analysis of relevant sub-sectors – such as water treatment, renewables, energy efficiency, eco-construction, recycling and bio-based products;
Detailed country profiles for each of the Member States;
Reports on niche growth areas and investment opportunities; and
References to developments in financing.
Europe INNOVA: http://www.europe-innova.org
Closure date of the Call for proposals: 12 Febraury 2009