An EU-wide EIP-AGRI network is being built to support EIP-AGRI activities through communication, partnering, dissemination, knowledge flows and collecting practice needs for future projects and programming. The network activities are facilitated by a professional team of experts at the EIP-AGRI Service Point established in Brussels.
The primary objective of the EIP-AGRI Service Point is to stimulate the interaction between all people involved in the EIP-AGRI network, including farmers, researchers, advisers, NGOs, public authorities in Member States, businesses and other interested parties. This objective is achieved by:
- gathering and disseminating information from research and innovation project and creating an effective flow of information via the EIP-AGRI website;
- bringing together innovation actors in Focus Groups, seminars and workshops to exchange information and experiences on various topics, and;
- connecting with other relevant networks at national, regional and/or local levels.
The EIP-AGRI network is also collecting research needs from farming and forestry in view of providing input for the research agenda
One important function of the EIP-AGRI network will be to provide inspiration for the setting-up of Operational Groups. There are various sources of inspiration available, including a series of easy-to-read Factsheets, a regular newsletter, the Agriinovation magazine, the results of various workshops and seminars and the activities / outcomes of EIP-AGRI Focus Groups that are organised to share knowledge on concrete practical issues (see Information Box – EIP-AGRI Focus Groups).
People who are interested in finding funding, partners, information or research experts for their Operational Groups can do so easily using the interactive innovation platform provided by the EIP-AGRI website. The website has many exciting and interactive features that can bring people and ideas together on the web. Through the website's interactive functions, users can share innovative project ideas and practices, as well as information about existing research and innovation projects. Various EIP-AGRI-related publications are also available for download on the website, providing visitors with information on a wide range of interesting topics.
There are also collaborative workspaces for specific innovation topics and Horizon 2020 projects/topics, and an overview of funding opportunities for innovation projects.
Future functionalities will be developed for Operational Groups and the Managing Authorities of Rural Development Programmes (RDPs) once the programmes start. Through this collaborative effort, the EIP-AGRI website will become a one-stop-shop for innovation in the European agricultural, food and forestry sectors.