23 / 02 / 2018

EARTO Publishes New Paper on European Innovation Hubs

In the frame of the discussions on the future European Framework Programme for Research & Innovation (FP9), EARTO, the European Association of Research and Technology Organisations, hereby provides input to the debate and key recommendations with its new paper on European Innovation Hubs – An Ecosystem Approach to Accelerate the Uptake of Innovation in Key Enabling Technologies.   Strengthening and orchestrating Europe’s innovation hubs will be the next big step driving Europe to sustain its industrial competitiveness on a global scale by enabling excellent collaborative research, supporting the development and market uptake of KETs, and fostering innovation in a wide range of industrial sectors. Supporting key European industrial sectors to come up with new disruptive products and services in the market will be key to overcome our current societal challenges, should those be on health care, transport, energy, etc. The next step for EU Industrial and R&I policies should be to support Member States to orchestrate such collaborations/co-creation in more complex RD&I ecosystems and industrial value chains across Europe.   In this context, EARTO believes that FP9 should build on Horizon 2020’s efforts and be even more strongly based on an ecosystem approach, boosting collaboration and co-creation, focussing on the orchestration of Europe’s innovation hubs along key industrial value chains. This paper aims to bring further inputs, explaining how innovation hubs work today and the role RTOs play as orchestrators and integrators of those hubs. It also gives 3 main recommendations for future EU RD&I policy as follows:
  • Recommendation 1 – Design a strong EU cross-border collaborative programme in FP9, building on the concept of innovation hubs linked to key industrial value chains to promote a competitive RD&I ecosystem strengthening European Industries’ capacities to further absorb and scale up the technologies matured into new products and services, maximising FP9’s impact for society. This needs to be set as a strong priority for FP9 and clearly reflected in its total budget, its future structure, and its internal budget allocation.
  • Recommendation 2 – Develop a pan-European strategy to strengthen and foster the development of European innovation hubs, creating synergies and alignment between the existing European, national and regional strategies, giving RTOs a clear mandate to drive the development of innovation hubs along key industrial value chains, and strengthening a consistent mixed-funding schemes at European, National and Regional levels for those hubs.
  • Recommendation 3 – Within Innovation Hubs, ensure the long-term sustainability of the Technology Infrastructures managed by competence centres with a strategic approach based on Industry’s needs.
EARTO and its members remain ready to continue the dialogue with EU institutions and provide additional input on these topics to boost innovation-led growth in Europe.   EARTO Paper on European Innovation Hubs