European Innovation Council essential to empower breakthrough innovators, experts say
Brussels, 20 November 2017
The independent High-Level Group of Innovators published today their recommendations on the European Innovation Council (EIC), indicating it should support breakthrough innovation for the benefit of all, meeting the needs of high potential innovators from across the EU from start-up to scale-up.
In their first set of recommendations, the Group (including successful innovators, entrepreneurs and venture capitalists from across the EU), also recommend bringing all relevant EU funding schemes into a single, fit-for-purpose 'one-stop-shop' for innovation financing, with major reforms to introduce excellence, flexibility and agility (for example to combine grant financing with venture capital investments).
Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation said: "This first set of key recommendations is a substantial contribution to the current debate on a future European Innovation Council. They come at a critical time in the preparations for the next EU programme and provide very clear views on what is needed for Europe to lead on breakthrough innovation."
Herman Hauser, Chair of the Group of Innovators said: "It is my great pleasure to present our first set of recommendations on how to make Europe the global leader for breakthrough market-creating innovation. To that end, Europe must set up a European Innovation Council as a key pillar of the next EU Framework programme, to focus on excellence even where there is high risk, to empower innovators, to provide them with simple, yet powerful tailor-made financial support from start-up to scale-up, and reinforce the EU innovation eco-systems."
The High-Level Group of Innovators (entrepreneurs, CEOs, investors and ecosystem builders), launched in January 2017, provides guidance to the European Commission on the design of a future European Innovation Council The Group issued an initial statement of intent in July and are preparing a full set of recommendations for their next meeting in January.
The creation of a European Innovation Council forms part of the Commission's Start-up and Scale-up strategy, and was a key recommendation in the "Lab, Fab, App" report chaired by Pascal Lamy.
The Commission has launched a pilot phase for the European Innovation Council, worth €2.7 billion for 2018-20, within the current EU research and innovation programme (Horizon 2020). The recommendations from the Group will feed into the preparation of the Commission's proposals for the next EU research and innovation programme, to be presented by mid-2018.
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