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Home > Nanotechnology Columns > NanotechnologyKTN > The Horizon 2020 €70 Billion Programme

Fiona Brewer
NanoKTN

Abstract:
The UK launch of the European Union's new programme for research and innovation, the Horizon 2020 programme, is imminent. The Nanotechnology Knowledge Transfer Network (NanoKTN) is helping to promote this €70 billion programme to tackle societal challenges by helping to bridge the gap between research and commercial organisations.

October 10th, 2013

The Horizon 2020 €70 Billion Programme

The UK launch of the European Union's new programme for research and innovation, the Horizon 2020 programme, is imminent. The Nanotechnology Knowledge Transfer Network (NanoKTN) is helping to promote this €70 billion programme to tackle societal challenges by helping to bridge the gap between research and commercial organisations.

Horizon 2020 is the financial instrument implementing the Innovation Union, a Europe 2020 flagship initiative aimed at securing Europe's global competitiveness. Running from 2014 to 2020 with an indicative €70 billion budget, the EU's new programme for research and innovation is part of the drive to create new growth and jobs in Europe.

Horizon 2020 aims to help innovative enterprises to develop their technological breakthroughs into viable products with real commercial potential. This market-driven approach will include creating partnerships with the private sector and Member States to bring together the resources needed.

The NanoKTN is encouraging UK SMEs to participate across the Horizon 2020 programme. Alongside traditional funding mechanisms that are modified and carried over form FP7, there will be a new SME instrument alongside other ways to encourage commercialisation of research. The new proposed SME instrument replaces the old ‘Research for SME' mechanism and is open to highly innovative SMEs showing a strong ambition to develop, grow and internationalise, regardless of whether they are high-tech or not. The SME instrument will be competitive, business-oriented and focused on creating impact, bringing high-potential innovations closer to the market. The other scheme that is of interest to UK SME's is the Eurostars programme which is funded under the Eureka initiative, where member states contribute funds (the Technology Strategy Board in the UK) towards smaller collaborations across Europe.

The ‘Industrial Leadership' pillar will be of interest to companies wishing to engage with the incorporation of nanotechnologies. Funds will be made available to convert basic research into products of the future, and will include the scalability of production (industrialisation or pilot line development) which will also work alongside the European structural funds such as the ERDF.

The programme has several objectives and six ‘Key Enabling Technologies' (KETs) of which nanotechnology is one. The other five include; photonics, micro and nano-electronics, advanced materials, biotechnology and advanced manufacturing. There has also been a recognition that in Europe, enhancing access to risk finance for investing in research and innovation, is important as well as increasing innovation in small and medium-sized enterprises. Various new initiatives are currently being formulated to implement this. Research and development around the risk agenda for nanomaterials is thought to be included in the new work programmes as there is very much a European element to this.

Horizon 2020 will combine all research and innovation funding currently provided through the Framework Programmes for Research and Technical Development , the innovation related activities of the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (CIP) and the the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT)

The proposed support for research and innovation under Horizon 2020 will:

• Strengthen the EU's position in science which will provide a boost to top-level research in Europe,
• Strengthen European leadership in innovation through the ‘Industrial Leadership' pillar. This includes major investment in key technologies, greater access to capital and support for SMEs.
• Address major concerns shared by all Europeans such as climate change, developing sustainable transport and mobility, making renewable energy more affordable, ensuring food safety and security, or coping with the challenge of an ageing population.

For further information about the Horizon 2020 programme and support available from the NanoKTN, please visit www.nanoktn.com or email


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