News26 January 2018Davos, SwitzerlandResearch and Innovation
EU financing for breakthrough innovation should adapt to the needs of the innovator, experts say
The independent High-Level Group of Innovators advising the European Commission has published its recommendations on how a European Innovation Council (EIC) should fund and nurture breakthrough innovation from start-up to scale-up.
In their report, entitled 'Europe is back: Accelerating breakthrough innovation', they recommend that a future EIC provides simplified and flexible financing, tailor-made for the needs of the innovator and which incentivises private investment for rapid scaling up. They also recommend boosting awareness of Europe's innovation successes and leveraging European ecosystems, so that highly innovative companies can benefit from expertise and partnerships from across Europe.
Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation Carlos Moedas welcomed the recommendations and said they formed a significant input for the development of a full-fledged European Innovation Council as part of the next EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation. The report was first presented to French President Emmanuel Macron at the World Economic Forum in Davos, who has made similar calls for a European agency for innovation.
Commissioner Moedas said:
These recommendations show how a European Innovation Council would empower our most talented innovators and stimulate an environment of risk-taking, entrepreneurship and scaling-up to the international stage. They come at a critical time in the preparations for the next EU research and innovation programme.
The Group's chair, Hermann Hauser, co-Founder of Amadeus Capital Partners, said:
We are convinced that our fourteen recommendations - on funding, awareness, scale and talent - will constitute a step change in the impact of EU innovation support and help catapult Europe into pole position in the global innovation stakes
The High-Level Group of 15 leading innovators was launched in January 2017. Their recommendations will be considered in the Commission's proposals for the future EU research and innovation Framework Programme (post-Horizon 2020) due to be presented by this summer.
The Commission has launched an EIC pilot programme (2018-20), to test out new approaches within the current Horizon 2020 programme to better support top-class innovators, start-ups, small companies and researchers with breakthrough ideas with scale up potential.