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Research & Technology in the EU

Latest news about research and innovation policy in the European Union.

Marine knowledge 2020
Marine Knowledge 2020 brings together marine data from different sources with the aim of: Helping industry, public authorities and researchers find the data and make more effective use of them to develop new products and services. Improving our understanding of how the seas behave.

The 2012 EU SURVEY on R&D Investment Business Trends
The report contains the main findings of the seventh survey on R&D investment business trends based on 187 responses of mainly large companies from the 1000 EU-based companies in the 2011 EU Industrial R&D Investment Scoreboard. These 187 companies are responsible for R&D investment worth almost €56 billion, constituting around 40% of the total R&D investment of the 1000 EU Scoreboard companies.

Central and Eastern Europe Beyond Transition: Convergence and Divergence in Europe
The focus of the Forward Look project is on Central and Eastern Europe ‘beyond transition’: the objective being to define the extent to which social science research agendas need to address issues that are specific to this region, and the extent to which pan-European research agendas need to pay more attention to the specific dynamics of change in this region. The last 25 years have witnessed some of the most profound political, social and economic changes in Europe’s history. The fall of communism at the end of the 1980s not only reshaped relationships within the continent against a background of rapidly increasing globalisation, but also provided fascinating insights into the potential for, and limitations of, the large-scale reshaping of society. The Forward Look ‘Central and Eastern Europe Beyond Transition: Convergence and Divergence in Europe’ aimed both to identify the developments in CEE which would, could or should become hot research topics in the study of CEE as a part of European society and as such be promoted and endorsed by national and European grant institutions; and to outline ways in which foresight on CEE can contribute to the development of the social sciences in general and input important topics into transnational research.

European Research Area - guide
The European Commission has today set out concrete steps Member States should take to achieve the European Research Area (ERA), a Single Market for research and innovation in Europe. The goal is to enable researchers, research institutions and businesses to better move, compete and co-operate across borders. This will strengthen Member States' research bases, increase their competitiveness and allow them to work together more effectively to tackle major societal challenges, such as climate change, food and energy security and public health. To help achieve the European Research Area, the Commission has also today signed a Joint Statement and Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) with organisations representing key research organisations and research funding bodies. The proposals are a response to the deadline set by EU leaders to make the European Research Area a reality by 2014.

Communication from the Commission "Smart Cities and Communities - European Innovation Partnership" [COM(2012)4701]
On 10 July 2012, the European Commission launched the Smart Cities and Communities European Innovation Partnership. The partnership proposes to pool resources to support the demonstration of energy, transport and information and communication technologies (ICT) in urban areas. The energy, transport and ICT industries are invited to work together with cities to combine their technologies to address cities' needs. This will enable innovative, integrated and efficient technologies to roll out and enter the market more easily, while placing cities at the centre of innovation. The funding will be awarded through yearly calls for proposals: €365 million for 2013.

Innovation partnership for Smart Cities and Communities - guide
One of the greatest challenges facing the EU is how best to design and adapt cities into smart intelligent and sustainable environments. Almost three quarters of Europeans live in cities, consuming 70% of the EU's energy. Congestion costs Europe about 1% of its GDP every year; most of it is located in urban areas. Smart urban technologies can make a major contribution to tackling many urban challenges. By launching a Smart Cities and Communities European Innovation Partnership (SCC) the European Commission aims to boost the development of smart technologies in cities – by pooling research resources from energy, transport and ICT and concentrating them on a small number of demonstration projects which will be implemented in partnership with cities. For 2013 alone, € 365 million in EU funds have been earmarked for the demonstration of these types of urban technology solutions.

FP7 2013 work programme - guide
The European Commission has today announced the final and biggest ever set of calls for proposals for research under its Seventh Framework Programme (FP7). In total, €8.1 billion will support projects and ideas that will boost Europe's competitiveness and tackle issues such as human health, protecting the environment and finding new solutions to growing challenges linked to urbanisation and managing waste. The funding – which is open to organisations and businesses in all EU Member States and partner countries - makes up the lion's share of the EU's proposed €10.8 billion research budget for 2013. This announcement comes just days after EU leaders emphasised the importance of research and innovation in the Compact for Growth and Jobs.

Key Enabling Technologies
A significant part of future goods and services are as yet unknown, but the main driving force behind their development will be Key Enabling Technologies (KETs), such as nanotechnology, micro- and nanoelectronics including semiconductors, advanced materials, biotechnology and photonics. Mastering these technologies means being at the forefront of managing the shift to a low carbon, knowledge-based economy. They play an important role in the R&D, innovation and cluster strategies of many industries and are regarded as crucial for ensuring the competitiveness of European industries in the knowledge economy. These technologies enable the development of new goods and services and the restructuring of industrial processes needed to modernise EU industry and make the transition to a knowledge-based and low carbon resource-efficient economy. Whilst the EU has very good research and development capacities in some key enabling technology areas, it has not been as successful at translating research results into commercialised manufactured goods and services. Key Enabling Technologies are of systemic relevance as they enable the development of new goods and services and the restructuring of industrial processes needed to modernise EU industry and secure the research, development and innovation base in Europe.

Key Enabling Technologies - guide
Europe is a global leader in the development of Key Enabling Technologies (KETs) and it has all that is necessary to remain in this position. The EU holds a strong competitive advantage: it is the only region to master all six KETs (micro-/nanoelectronics, nanotechnology, photonics, advanced materials, industrial biotechnology, advanced manufacturing technologies). Over the years, Europe's strong R&D base has championed all six KETs, maintaining a leading position with 32 % of the global patent applications between 1991 and 2008.1 However, despite these strengths, the EU is not capitalising on its knowledge base: the EU’s major weakness lies in translating its knowledge base into goods and services and EU patents are, more and more, exploited outside the EU. The European Commission tabled today 26 June 2012 its strategy to boost the industrial production of KETs-based products, e.g. innovative products and applications of the future. The strategy aims to keep pace with the EU’s main international competitors, restore growth in Europe and create jobs in industry, at the same time addressing today's burning societal challenges.

Key Enabling Technologies
A significant part of future goods and services are as yet unknown, but the main driving force behind their development will be Key Enabling Technologies (KETs), such as nanotechnology, micro- and nanoelectronics including semiconductors, advanced materials, biotechnology and photonics. Mastering these technologies means being at the forefront of managing the shift to a low carbon, knowledge-based economy. They play an important role in the R&D, innovation and cluster strategies of many industries and are regarded as crucial for ensuring the competitiveness of European industries in the knowledge economy.

"Science: it's a girl thing!" campaign
With the European Union needing up to one million additional researchers by 2020, the European Commission has launched a campaign to get more girls interested in science and encourage more women to choose research as a career. Women make up more than half the EU's student population and 45 per cent of all doctorates (PhDs), but they account for only one third of career researchers. Women PhD graduates are also still a minority in engineering and manufacturing. The three year campaign will first seek to get teenage girls interested in studying science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM subjects). The focus will then broaden to female students more generally, encouraging them to consider research careers.

Telecommunication Market and Regulatory Developments 2011
Greater data consumption and a shift to mobile technologies (such as smartphones) and mobile services (such as 3G internet, music streaming and webmail) are the most significant trends in the information & communications technologies (ICT) sector, which now accounts for 8 million jobs and 6% of EU GDP, according to the Annual Digital Agenda scoreboard.

Digital Agenda Scoreboard - need for structural economic reform across Europe and surplus of ICT jobs
Europe's citizens, businesses and innovator s are generating enough digital demand to put Europe into sustainable economic growth, but failure to supply enough fast internet, online content, research and relevant skills is undermining this potential. Greater data consumption and a shift to mobile technologies (such as smartphones) and mobile services (such as 3G internet, music streaming and webmail) are the most significant trends in the information & communications technologies (ICT) sector, which now accounts for 8 million jobs and 6% of EU GDP.

European Patent Office Annual Report 2011
2011 was a record year at the EPO. It received almost 250 000 patent filings, the highest number ever in its 34-year history, showing that European patents are in high demand across the globe, and that Europe remains attractive for innovative industries. In the European Patent Office annual report, you will find key trends and detailed statistics, a report on its strategies and activities, plus a video message from President Benoît Battistelli.

New EU Agency for managing large-scale IT systems in the area of freedom, security and justice
A new agency for managing large-scale EU information systems was inaugurated on 22 March 2012 in Tallinn, Estonia, with the attendance of Home Affairs Commissioner Cecilia Malmström. Its main task will be to en­sure that the Visa Information (VIS) and EURODAC systems operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The Agency is due to become fully operational as of December 2012.

Parliament and Council must bring "Horizon 2020" in line with SMEs' needs
UEAPME issues position paper; calls for 15% dedicated budget, single entry point; rejects attempts to dilute SME definition

Communication on "High-Performance Computing": Europe's place in a Global Race
High Performance Computing (HPC) is critical for industries that rely on precision and speed, such as automotive and aviation, and the health sector. Access to rapid simulations carried out by ever-improving super computers can be the difference between life and death; between new jobs and profits or bankruptcy.

Plan to make EU the world leader in High-Performance Computing - guide
The European Commission on 15 February set out a plan for the EU to reverse its relative decline in HPC use and capabilities. Under this plan the EU will double its investment in HPC (from EUR 630 million to EUR 1.2 billion) and become home to computers that can perform 1,000,000,000,000,000,000 (i.e. 1018) operations per second ("exa-scale"), before 2020. Half of the investment would be for development and training and for new centres of excellence, creating thousands of jobs.

Innovation Union Scoreboard 2011
The Innovation Union Scoreboard includes innovation indicators and trend analyses for the EU27 Member States, as well as for Croatia, Iceland, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Norway, Serbia, Switzerland and Turkey. It also includes comparisons based on a more reduced set of indicators between the EU27 and 10 global competitors.

The Innovation Union Scoreboard - guide
This memo provides an overview of the research and innovation performance of the different EU Member States, and associated and neighbouring countries, as measured by the Innovation Union Scoreboard 2011. The Scoreboard is prepared by the Maastricht Economic and Social Research and Training Centre on Innovation and Technology (MERIT), in collaboration with the Commission's in-house science service, the Joint Research Centre (JRC).

eBSN eBusiness Solutions Guide
This web-based guide is created by the European Commission as part of the European eBusiness Support Network (eBSN). It provides a review of the eBusiness and IT solutions market and supports companies and consultants to find and select appropriate software products, solutions, and service providers.

European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) Strategic Innovation Agenda - guide
The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) is to significantly step up its efforts to drive innovation and entrepreneurship in the EU with the creation of six new cross-border innovation hubs, known as Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KICs), in 2014-2020. The European Commission has allocated a budget of €2.8 billion in the next financial framework to enable the EIT to expand and consolidate the development of its existing KICs which focus on climate change, sustainable energy and ICT.

Patents on chimpanzees, sperm cells and human genes - European Patents 'black List' published
Today Testbiotech is publishing a “Black List” of European Patents that have already been granted. Ten examples, granted since 2009, were selected for the list in cooperation with the Initiative “No Patents on Life”.

Antimicrobial Resistance - guide
With about 25,000 patients dying per year in the EU from infections caused by drug resistant bacteria and related costs of over 1.5 billion euros in healthcare expenses and productivity losses , antimicrobial resistance is a growing health problem in the EU. Today, on the eve of European Antibiotic Awareness Day, the European Commission tabled a comprehensive Action Plan on Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) which unveils12 concrete actions to be implemented in close cooperation with the EU Member States.

Binge drinking more common in northern Europe
The relationship between drinking and damage to one's health is stronger in the Baltic countries and Sweden than in Italy, new research from Europe shows. The findings, published in the journal Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research, suggest that the northern part of Europe tends to report higher alcohol-harm relationships because of a stronger propensity to indulge in heavy episodic drinking, what experts label 'binge drinking'.