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MAKING A POSITIVE DIFFERENCE

Improving noise reduction

The Silentwood project has developed sophisticated noise-reducing wall panels and doors. In addition to spurring growth and jobs in the doors/panels application sector, Silentwood will provide direct economic and health benefits to the EU.
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EuResist - Enhancing HIV treatment with more precise patient modeling

HIV is not curable but it is treatable, states Dr Francesca Incardona, CEO of EuResist Network GEIE and research area manager at Informa Srl, the SME responsible for coordinating the EuResist project.
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SILCO - Doing away with bacteria in water systems

The SILCO project has developed an innovative monitoring device that senses the elimination process of complex bacterial communities known as biofilm and unsafe bacteria from drinking water systems. The prototype successfully killed legionella bacteria at a natural source spa in Slovakia
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FIRELI - New hose equipment to increase safety of firemen

Every year, fires affect large areas of forest in Europe - mostly in the Mediterranean countries, where an average of around 500,000 hectares are destroyed annually. That is the equivalent of 50 times the land area of Paris. The economic cost is estimated at between €600 and €800 million per year.
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Smart irrigation technology set to reduce costs and save water

Due in large part to inefficient water irrigation systems, the agriculture industry wastes 60% of the water it uses each year, or 70% of the world's freshwater. WaterBee has developed a smart irrigation system to reduce this wastage, thereby saving money and increasing both crop quality and yield.
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NANORAY - A portable x-ray machine

X-ray technology has existed for more than 100 years, but in spite of repeated efforts no one has found a way of solving the problems involved in making X-ray machines portable. Now, thanks to an innovative European Union (EU) funded multinational research project, that breakthrough has at last been achieved.
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CleanHatch - New high-tech solution to clean fish hatcheries

Due to increased market pressure to produce high quality and low cost fish, the aquaculture industry has been forced to develop technologies that reduce the level of risk to investors yet maintain reliable production output.
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Let there be sight

Transplanting the human cornea (1) can enable a blind person to see. But it requires the perfect human donor match and there are no guarantees of success. A group of EU-funded SMEs and researchers, however, has developed an artificial cornea that offers failed transplant patients a potentially life-changing alternative.
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Other SME sites

Research and Innovation under the Cohesion Policy Programme 2007-2013

Sustainable economic growth is increasingly related to the capacity of regional economies to change and to innovate. This means that a much greater effort needs to be put into creating an environment that encourages innovation and research and development (R&D). The promotion of innovation is therefore a central feature in the Lisbon National Reform Programmes and a main priority for the new Cohesion Policy programmes for 2007-2013.

Between 2007 and 2013, EU Cohesion Policy instruments will provide some € 86.4 billion (almost 25% of the total) to R&D and innovation, including the mainstreaming of innovative actions and experimentation. SMEs can also benefit.

More information

Contact the management authority in your region

The Research Executive Agency of the European Commission

The Research Executive Agency (REA) was set up in Brussels in order to manage a large part of the Seventh Framework Programme for Research, Technological Development and Demonstration Activities (FP7).

Executive agencies are set up, for a limited period (in this case the period of FP7, though this might be extended) and are located in either Brussels or Luxembourg (note that "Executive Agencies" should be differentiated from Regulatory Agencies that are set up by specific decisions of the European Council and/or the European Parliament and are situated in many of the member states of the European Union).

The task of executive agencies is to manage (literally to "execute") specific activities that would normally have been carried out by specific departments within the European Commission. As they concentrate on this management role, and have no policy remit, executive agencies can be more effective and more efficient in addressing the needs of their client base (in this case the research communities).

The REA has its own legal personality, but is supervised and controlled by the European Commission, in particular by the directorates general that have research portfolios: DG Research and Innovation, DG Enterprise and Industry, DG Communications Networks, Content and Technology (Connect), and the transport section of DG Mobility and Transport. The REA has no responsibility for research policy - all research-related policy remains within the relevant directorates general of the European Commission.

About REA


ERC

Just like any other organisation, research teams from SMEs can compete in the fourth Ideas programme, on the basis of excellence. This programme supports investigator driven "frontier research" carried out across all fields by individual teams competing at European level, in all scientific and technological fields, including engineering. For its implementation, a European Research Council (ERC), consisting of an independent Scientific Council and a dedicated implementation structure, has been established by the Commission under this specific programme


Environment

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) traditionally find it harder to comply with environmental legislation than their larger counterparts. In general, the smaller the company, the more difficult it is. Although there is a cost implication in compliance, companies that do take action can benefit from lower energy bills and greater efficiency in their operations. The European Commission understands the pressures faced by small businesses and is taking action to help them. It has proposed an Environmental Compliance Assistance Programme to make it easier for SMEs to comply with their obligations and improve their environmental performances.

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European Medicines Agency

The European Medicines Agency is a decentralised body of the European Union with headquarters in London. Its main responsibility is the protection and promotion of public and animal health, through the evaluation and supervision of medicines for human and veterinary use.

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CIP: helping European SMEs innovate and grow

The first Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (CIP) is a coherent and integrated response to the objectives of the reinvigorated Lisbon growth and jobs strategy. CIP helps enterprises grow and innovate by:

  • supporting private equity and loan guarantee schemes;
  • providing SMEs with clear and efficient information and advice via the business support networks, building on today's Euro Info Centres (EICs) and Innovation Relay Centres (IRCs);
  • improving the conditions for innovation by supporting exchanges of best practices, networking and analysis, with particular emphasis on eco-innovation;
  • stimulating the new converging markets for electronic networks, media content and digital technologies;
  • encouraging the wider uptake of new and renewable energies and promoting energy efficiency.


The CIP and Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) are complementary, and both run from 2007-2013. CIP provides SMEs with a local access point for information and advice on European programmes (especially FP7), single market issues, European regulations and innovation actions.

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SME Portal

This portal provides access to information on the whole spectrum of EU policies, legislation, programmes and initiatives relevant to Europe's small and medium-sized enterprises.


Your Europe - Business

The Your Europe- Business is a multilingual portal containing practical information and online government services for companies looking for business in another EU country. The information is available in several EU languages: for each country an individual languages pattern is being developed including neighbouring countries languages.
Provided jointly by the European Commission and national authorities.

Website


European Small Business Portal

Want to find out what the EU does to boost small businesses in Europe and on the global market, and what it can do for your business? This portal gathers together all the information provided by the EU on and for SMEs, ranging from practical advice to policy issues, from local contact points to networking links.

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