On 9 December, the EIT Governing Board will select strategic pan-European partnerships to boost innovation and tackle health and raw materials challenges in Europe
9 December 2014, the EIT Governing Board will select pan-European partnerships of business, higher education and research: EIT Health and EIT Raw Materials, with the aim to combat Europe’s societal challenges and boost the EU’s innovation capacity. The decision will be made following hearings with the EIT Governing Board and consortias shortlisted by independent experts out of proposals received in response to the EIT's Call for Knowledge and Innovation Communities launched in February 2014.
The overriding criterion for selecting the partnerships is excellence and potential pan-European impact of the partnerships in terms of new business creation, entrepreneurship education and societal benefits in the areas of health and raw materials.
The EIT will provide each of the winners with a start-up grant of up to 4 million EUR for the first year of operations and support boosting their innovation capacity and growth. EIT Health (innovation for healthy living and active ageing) and EIT Raw Materials (sustainable exploration, extraction, processing, recycling and substitution) are expected to become fully operational shortly after having signed a seven-year Framework Partnership Agreement with the EIT in the second half of 2015.
2014 Call for Knowledge and Innovation Communities selection criteria: http://eit.europa.eu/interact/bookshelf/2014-kic-call-selection-criteria-2014-kic-call-selection-criteria
EIT to date: 450 business ideas, 215 graduates and growing
The EIT is an independent EU body set up in 2008 to spur innovation and entrepreneurship across Europe to overcome some of its greatest challenges. It brings together leading universities, research labs and companies to form dynamic cross-border partnerships – Knowledge and Innovation Communities, KICs - that develop innovative products and services, start new companies, and train a new generation of entrepreneurs.
The first three EIT KICs on climate change, ICT and sustainable energy were selected in 2009 (Climate-KIC, EIT ICT Labs and KIC InnoEnergy). The EU decided to expand the EIT’s activities over the 2014 to 2020 period within the Horizon 2020 Framework Programme for Research and Innovation and to increase its budget to € 2.7 billion.
To date, the EIT’s KICs bring together more than 500 leading partners from all over Europe, for the first time fully integrating business, research and higher education. Since 2010, the KICs have incubated more than 450 business ideas and created 75 innovative start-ups. 165 knowledge transfers and adoptions have taken place and 61 new products and services have been launched. The first 215 students have graduated from EIT labelled degree programmes.