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European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT)

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European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT)

Creation of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), which aims to strengthen the innovation capacity of European Union (EU) countries by integrating higher education, research and innovation and promoting synergies and cooperation between them, in line with the highest standards.

ACT

Regulation (EC) No 294/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 March 2008 establishing the European Institute of Innovation and Technology.

SUMMARY

The EIT promotes integration, synergies and cooperation between the three elements of the knowledge triangle - education, research and innovation - by promoting excellence, based on the strategic networks created in this way.

Amongst other things, it contributes to the funding of knowledge and innovation communities (or KICs), made up of higher education establishments, companies, research institutes and other parties working together on innovative projects.

Main objectives

The main objectives of the EIT are the following:

  • identify its priority areas and activities;
  • raise awareness amongst potential partner organisations;
  • select, design and coordinate KICs;
  • raise the necessary funds from public and private sources;
  • promote recognition within the EU of titles and diplomas issued by partner higher education establishments whose diplomas are issued by the EIT;
  • promote dissemination of best practices to put in place a common culture of innovation and knowledge transfer;
  • become a global benchmark as an body of excellence in the fields of higher education, research and innovation;
  • encourage recourse to multidisciplinary approaches to innovation;
  • ensure complementarity and synergies between its activities and other EU programmes;
  • put in place a stakeholder forum.

Governance

The EIT was created in 2008 and is based in Budapest, Hungary, as an independent community body. Its activities are carried out in line with actions at regional, national and intergovernmental level. The EIT possesses legal personality. It has a specific statute which sets out its operations and the responsibilities of its main actors, including the management committee, the director and the internal auditing function.

Knowledge and innovation communities (KICs)

The EIT relies on KICs or independent partnerships of higher education establishments, research institutes, companies and other stakeholders in the innovation process in the form of strategic networks.

The main responsibilities of KICs include:

  • innovative activities and investments with European added value;
  • ground-breaking scientific research (high technology) which aims to address the essential interests of the economy (such as raw materials) or society (such as health);
  • university-level education and training activities (Master’s and doctoral levels) and professional training;
  • raising awareness and disseminating best practices.

The KICs are funded by the EIT and are selected via calls for proposals. They have a great degree of freedom to define their legal form and composition.

In principle, the period of activity of a KIC is 7 to 15 years, with the possibility of extension.

A KIC must include at least three partner organisations, each independent from the others and established in at least three different EU countries. At least two thirds of the partner organisations which make up a KIC must be established in EU countries. Each KIC comprises, at minimum, one higher education establishment and one private company.

EIT strategic innovation programme for 2014-20

The EIT’s priorities, long-term strategy and financial needs, amongst other things, are outlined in the 7-year strategic innovation programmes (SIPs). Based on these SIPs, the EIT adopts a 3-year work programme, including an assessment of its funding needs and sources.

For the 2014-20 period, the EIT’s objectives and performance indicators are defined in the Horizon 2020 programme.

Additional information can be found on the EIT website.

REFERENCES

Act

Entry into force

Deadline for transposition in the Member States

Official Journal of the European Union

Regulation (EC) No 294/2008

29.4.2008

-

OJ L 97, 9.4.2008, p. 1-12

Amending act(s)

Entry into force

Deadline for transposition in the Member States

Official Journal of the European Union

Regulation (EC) No 1292/2013

1.1.2014

-

OJ L 347, 20.12.2013, p.174-184

RELATED ACTS

Decision 2008/634/CE taken by common agreement between the Representatives of the Governments of Member States of 18 June 2008 on the location of the seat of the European Institute for Innovation and Technology (EIT) (Official Journal L 206, 2.8.2008).

Regulation (EU) No 1290/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 December 2013 laying down the rules for participation and dissemination in Horizon 2020 - the Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (2014-20) and repealing Regulation (EC) No 1906/2006 (Official Journal L 347, 20.12.2013).

Regulation (EU) No 1291/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 December 2013 establishing Horizon 2020 - the Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (2014-20) and repealing Decision No 1982/2006/EC (Official Journal L 347, 20.12.2013).

Decision No 1312/2013/UE of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 December 2013 on the Strategic Innovation Agenda of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT): the contribution of the EIT to a more innovative Europe (Official Journal L 347, 20.12.2013).

25.11.2014

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