The next generation of medical vaccines, hydrogen-powered vehicles, quieter aircraft and cheaper railways are among the research projects the EU plans to fund.
Designed to improve people’s lives and boost the competitiveness of EU industry, the EU is making €1bn available for the work, which they hope will be more than matched by partners from the private sector.
This is the first call for projects and partners under Horizon 2020, the EU’s €80bn research and innovation programme, that will be spread over the next six years.
The call was launched at an event in Brussels attended by industry representatives from the areas of interest together with the Research Commissioner Máire Geoghegan-Quinn and Commission president, José Manuel Barroso. The aim is to have academia, industry, SMEs, research institutes and other organisations work together.
“They will deliver results that no single country, company or even the European Union as such, would achieve alone,” said Mr Barroso.
This first call is part of a €22bn Innovation Investment Package that will establish seven public-private and four public-public partnerships. These will focus on key areas such as medicines, transport, electronics and bio-economy.
The EU will contribute €7.3bn, with €12.2bn coming from the private sector and from member states, and €2.5bn from four public-public partnerships in which member states are involved.
Applications for funding to carry out research under the relevant headings are invited from companies, SMEs, universities, research organisations and others.
The best projects will be chosen through peer review.
Commissioner Geoghegan-Quinn said they needed to work in a smart way to ensure a maximum return to the citizen for every euro spent.
“The challenge is to make sure that such investments deliver tangible impacts: to help accelerate the development of new technologies and innovations, to generate new markets for innovative products and services; and to deliver good jobs and major benefits to society”.
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