Plans are well underway to develop a vibrant new European Innovation Area (EIA). Building on ideas first debated during the 2020 European Innovation Summit, the EIA will seek to harness the ‘unique knowledge base developed by almost two million researchers and an annual investment of 200 billion euro’.
What the European Innovation Area wants to do is become a vehicle for turning the huge amounts of knowledge being generated into innovative solutions that can deliver fast-growing, world-leading companies.
“If we want to overcome Europe’s innovation deficit and improve the impact from our wealth of knowledge and ideas, we need to improve our support on the way from knowledge to innovation and market creation,” say Knowledge4Innovation (K4I), organisers of the European Innovation summit.
To help do this K4I established the European Innovation Area Manifesto, which sets out the ways to accelerate ‘Europe’s transition toward a single European innovation ecosystem’.
Mariya Gabriel, EU Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education, and Youth, is a key figure in the push to bring about an impactful EIA.
“By taking a decentralised co-creation approach we can develop a European Innovation Area which offers equal access to funding and where startups in one country can easily bid for public contracts in another,” Gabriel said. “Where startups and corporates work more closely together and where we have strong European associations bringing together all the actors of the European innovation ecosystems. I want us to achieve this and to nurture a networking culture fit for the 21st century, where all players are able to easily connect at a local and European level. And I also want to see the increased participation of women-led startups.”
Innovators and K4I are partnering to produce a special digital magazine on the progress of the European Innovation Area ahead of a major event being planned in the European Parliament this summer that will seek to make it the cornerstone of Europe’s ambition to move on from the pandemic and become the world’s first climate-neutral continent by the middle of the century.
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