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Q: How is innovation defined in Horizon 2020 and how does Horizon 2020 strengthen the approach to innovation?
A: Horizon 2020 will support all forms of innovation. This includes innovation that results from research and development (R&D) activities. It also includes innovation that results from other activities, such as finding new uses or combinations of existing technologies or developing new business models or new ways of interacting with users. While innovation is generally understood as the commercial introduction of a new or significantly improved product or service, innovations can also be for non-commercial applications such as for better public services or for addressing social needs ('social innovation').
Horizon 2020 will strengthen the approach to innovation in a number of ways. First, it will increase support for testing, piloting, and demonstrations of new technologies, such that their potential in real world environments can be better understood.
Second, Horizon 2020 will support the market demand for innovation, including through the development of specifications for new standards and through supporting public bodies to procure R&D services or innovative products and services. New approaches are also foreseen, such as inducement prizes that reward the achievement of specific goals, encouraging a wider range of innovators to become involved. Furthermore, bottom-up activities will be strengthened, and call topic descriptions will be less prescriptive, allowing Europe's brightest and most creative minds to propose their own solutions.
Third, Horizon 2020 introduces a new SME instrument specifically designed to support SMEs to innovate.
Fourth, Horizon 2020 will scale up financial instruments in which the public sector shares the risk with the private sector in make investments available for the development of innovative companies or projects.
For further information please see :  Horizon 2020 web site 
Category : Horizon 2020