Defence-related small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are key enablers of innovation and growth. There are more than 2,500 SMEs playing a central role in the complex defence supply chains in Europe.
See more about the conference on 18-19 September 2019, Kajaani, Finland
Clustering can help these SMEs to diversify into new markets, and exploit synergies between the defence and civil sectors. This is achieved by developing new civilian products based on technologies and materials originating from the defence sector, or vice versa.
The European Commission set several actions for defence-related SMEs in its defence communication of 2014 and the 2016 ‘European defence action plan’. This includes the use of existing EU programmes and tools designed to support the process of (regional) clustering
The Commission organises events, which provide more information on how defence-related companies, in particular SMEs, can contribute to regional economic development
This conference is organised by the European Commission and Campania Aerospace District in Caserta on 14-15 November 2019. The event will bring companies, clusters, national & regional authorities, and academia together to discuss actions in support of skills for Europe’s defence industry, as well as how the European structural & investment funds could contribute to this. The event will also include a workshop dedicated to exploring possible cooperation in line with the 2020 work programme of the European defence industrial development programme.
Conference on defence skills and dual use technologies
One year after the launch of the European defence skills partnership (EDSP), and at a crucial time for Europe, with the start of the new European Commission and European Parliament for the period 2019-2024, this conference aims at building on the work of previous and existing initiatives to tackle the issue of the skills gaps in the defence sector. The event co-organised by the European Commission and AEROCAMPUS Aquitaine will focus on the vocational education system meeting the needs of defence industries, innovative approaches in higher education for defence-related skills, and enhancing the attractiveness of the defence sector for new talents.
The Commission, regional agency Kainuun Etu, Association of Finnish Defence and Aerospace Industries and EURADA, organise this conference in Kajaani (Finland) on 18-19 September 2019.
It will bring companies and regional organisations together to discuss opportunities offered by the European defence fund and other programmes that support the development of defence technologies in the areas of communications, simulation & modelling, and virtual training.
On 26 February, Tallinn was the place-to-be to discuss cyber defence in the EU. The event was opened by the Estonian Minister of Defence Jüri Luik. A total of 130 participants from small to larger enterprises, academia, and authorities from different countries gathered to discuss the situation of the European market for cyber defence, funding opportunities for cyber defence companies and the availability of skills.
European cyber defence industry conference
The Commission and Andalusian regional agency IDEA organised a symposium on 3 and 4 October in Seville to promote research and innovation in defence & dual use. Opportunities were explored to support synergies between funding from the European structural and investment funds, the European defence fund, and other sources of funding.
Symposium on synergies between EDF and other EU funding
Jointly organised by the Commission and Région Sud Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur on 20-21 September, this event promoted defence and dual use technologies in the maritime field. It brought together about 200 participants, representing high-level experts, public authorities, clusters and SMEs.
European maritime forum on defence and dual use technologies
This 1.5-day event brought together national and European authorities, defence/security-related businesses and knowledge institutions on 4 and 5 May 2017 to learn more about the business perspectives in the dual use areas of drones and space, as well as to stimulate the development of a regional dual use strategy in Denmark. It showcased interesting cases of dual use companies.
Dual-use conference 2017 – drones & space
This conference targeted maritime dual use opportunities in autonomous systems and satellite applications in the Solent region. The goal of the conference was to highlight innovation priorities and initiate relationships across defence and civil organisations, involving major companies and SMEs. The conference took place on 4 April 2017, preceding the ocean business trade event.
Maritime and defence dual-use conference
The European Commission hosted this half-day workshop in Brussels on 9 March to explain the opportunities offered to regions and clusters by the EU’s new European defence action plan (EDAP). The EDAP is the Commission's contribution to a stronger European defence through ensuring that the European industrial base can meet future security needs in priority areas.
EDAP's new opportunities for regions
Organised by the European Commission and Bretagne Développement Innovation in Rennes on 23-24 November this symposium has harvested best practices among European regions and clusters for cybersecurity strategies regarding dual use technologies, provided information on the latest policy developments and promoted more cooperation between regions.
More than 220 participants took part in this conference which was jointly organised by the European Commission and the Agency of Innovation and Development of Andalusia. It showed how a dual-use approach can contribute to regional growth and jobs. Representatives from Croatia, Podkarpacie and Andalusia presented how they address such a dual-use approach in their research and innovation smart specialisation strategies (RIS3). This approach is offering opportunities for business development, innovation and cooperation to companies (from large to small), clusters, academia and research institutes. Participants to the event adopted the Seville declaration (329KB), a set of recommendations for European, national and regional policymakers to consider when designing policies and measures to support a European industry and R&D+I agenda in dual use.
Dual use technologies and RIS3 strategies in Europe
This seminar was co-organised by the European Commission and Aquitaine Développement Innovation on 11-12 June 2015. It offered an opportunity for four regions (Andalusia, Aquitaine, Brittany and Podkarpackie) to share their experiences in dual-use technologies. Various defence-related SMEs also took part in this event.
Organised by European regions research and innovation network (ERRIN), this workshop on 14 April 2015 explored the potential of dual use research and development (R&D) and encourages the involvement of defence-related SMEs in future EU funding programmes.
EU Funding for dual use: regional opportunities
Co-organised by the European Commission, the European Defence Agency (EDA), and the European Association of Regional Development Agencies (EURADA), this workshop on 25 November 2014 explored opportunities for defence-related clusters in Europe to develop dual-use projects and activities.
This workshop, on 8 October 2014, explored how a dual-use approach can be integrated into smart specialisation strategies. It also showed how some regions, clusters, and SMEs are already starting to take advantage of these opportunities.
The European Commission, the European Association of Regional Development Agencies (EURADA), and Scottish Enterprise co-hosted a workshop called 'Enhancing dual-use technologies and products/services as a regional competitiveness factor' on 12 May 2014.
A dialogue with the industry was organised by the European Association of Regional Development Agencies (EURADA) on 9 October 2013.
This workshop was hosted by the European Commission and the European Defence Agency (EDA) on 28 January 2013. It introduced the concept of smart specialisation and regional policy funding to European companies and research centres.