Fostering Innovation Cohesion

Data shows that in the EU the capacity for research and innovation differs greatly between Member States. This innovation divide between top performing and underperforming countries poses a threat to the economic efficiency, cohesion and social stability of the EU. 

Europe has for a long time focused on science and research resulting in a globally leading knowledge portfolio in the form of scientific publications, patents, and key enabling technologies. A major challenge for the completion of a European Innovation area is to overcome the innovation divide between member states and regions. Commissioner Mariya Gabriel stressed that Europe still has difficulties turning all the good ideas and knowledge into innovations, economic activities, and productivity gains. Big potentials, in particular in new member states remain untapped. At the same time there is a great opportunity through better-linking education and entrepreneurship. There are more and more universities that build innovation ecosystems around their campuses sometimes referred to as “University Valleys”.

Several programmes have been designed to increase the innovation performance of less innovative countries and regions. The Widening Participation and Spreading Excellence actions contribute to building research and innovation capacity specifically for countries lagging behind. With the support of the European Innovation Ecosystems Programme and the synergies with the Structural Funds Programmes, innovation actors will be able to upgrade their research and innovation systems, making them stronger and allowing the EU as a whole to advance together. A particular role is played by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) with links to the Smart Specialisation Strategies and extended Regional Innovation Schemes.

In addition to the MFF instruments, the NGEU funds will finance the transition towards a digital and green future where the development of new technologies and impact innovations are the main drivers.

Improved innovation cohesion is one of the 8 Focus Areas of the European Innovation Area (EIA) initiative that will help connect innovators and ecosystems across Europe and provide great opportunities for cooperation and improved cohesion.

The overall objective of this debate is to provide a platform for policy makers and stakeholders to have an in-depth discussion about shortcomings and actions needed to foster innovation cohesion. What opportunities are presented through the various EU funding instruments (MFF) and what can we expect from the “Next Generation EU” funds to overcome the innovation gap between member states? What can be learned from high performers? What is the role of governance, infrastructure, and innovation support organizations?

Welcome and Introduction
Keynote
World Bank Report: Public Expenditure Reviews on Science, Technology, and Innovation
  • 12 October 2021
    World Bank Report: Public Expenditure Reviews on Science, Technology, and Innovation
    Speakers:
Reaction from the Bulgarian Ministry of Education and Science
  • 12 October 2021
    Reaction from the Bulgarian Ministry of Education and Science
Contributions from Innovation Ecosystem Actors
  • 12 October 2021
    Contributions from Innovation Ecosystem Actors
Innovation ecosystems for a strong digital Europe
  • 12 October 2021
    Innovation ecosystems for a strong digital Europe
    Speakers:
University Innovation Valleys
Unicorns – Hot spots for startup innovation ecosystems
  • 12 October 2021
    Unicorns – Hot spots for startup innovation ecosystems
Best practice examples from regions, cities, universities
  • 12 October 2021
    Best practice examples from regions, cities, universities

    Moderator: Lambert van Nistelrooij, Former MEP, Honorary President of the K4I Forum

The role of the Committee of the Regions in fostering innovation cohesion
  • 12 October 2021
    The role of the Committee of the Regions in fostering innovation cohesion
How Smart Specialisation can foster innovation cohesion
  • 12 October 2021
    How Smart Specialisation can foster innovation cohesion
    Speakers:
    Reflections on the Polish Innovation Ecosystem
    • 12 October 2021
      Reflections on the Polish Innovation Ecosystem
    ‘Engaged’ in the Region – the case of the Innovation Food Hub
    • 12 October 2021
      ‘Engaged’ in the Region – the case of the Innovation Food Hub
      Speakers:
    Green transition as a driver to foster innovation cohesion
    • 12 October 2021
      Green transition as a driver to foster innovation cohesion
    Closing Remarks and next steps
    • 12 October 2021
      Closing Remarks and next steps
    Event Moderator
    Markku Markkula
    First Vice-President of the European Committee of the Regions
    Natasha Kapil
    Senior Private Sector Specialist, World Bank Group (WBG)
    Phoebe Koundouri
    University Professor, Athens University of Economics and Business
    Anu Manickam
    PhD, Researcher Hanze UAS
    Servaas Duterloo
    EU Research and Innovation Funding, Delft University of Technology
    Victor Negrescu
    MEP, Vice-Chair of the CULT, S&D, Romania, Member of the K4I Forum
    Willem Jonker
    CEO , EIT Digital
    Fabrizio Porrino - EIA Events Speakers
    Head of Secretariat, EU Unicorns Group
    Krzysztof Gulda
    Former Director in the Ministry of Economy and of Science and Higher Education, Poland
    Lambert Van Nistelrooij
    Former MEP and Honorary President of K4I Forum
    Roland Strauss
    Managing Director, K4I Forum
    Mariya Gabriel Profile Picture
    EU Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education, and Youth
    Maria Da Graça Carvalho Profile Picture
    MEP, ITRE Committee, EPP, Portugal, Chair of the K4I Forum
    Bernd Shäfer picture - EIA Events Speakers
    CEO, EIT RawMaterials

      Event Details