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Knowledge Society Agency (UMIC)
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4th Innovation Days and Closure of the 2nd Portuguese Presidency of EUREKA

 - 18/06/2009

Logotipo da Presidência Portuguesa da Iniciativa EUREKAThe 4th Innovation Days and the Innovation Days 2009 project exhibition, the shop window for applied research and innovation in European industry, were held on 18 to 20 June 2009 at FIL – Feira das Indústrias de Lisboa, Parque das Nações, in Lisbon.

The 4th Research Days are intended to disseminate R&D results and create conditions to foster new innovative projects through partnerships between companies and research bodies, both Portuguese and international.

The 4th Research Days were organised by the Innovation Agency (Adl), and are a natural follow-on to the 3rd Innovation Days held in November 2007 with the support of The Knowledge Society Agency (UMIC) . They coincided with the Ministerial Conference marking the closure of the 2nd Portuguese Presidency of the EUREKA Initiative (Network for Market Oriented R&D). EUREKA dates back to 1985 and consists of an intergovernmental initiative to support European innovation. Its main objective is to stimulate the productivity and competitiveness of European industry, promoting links between enterprises producing products and services, R&D institutions and universities. 38 European countries are currently involved in the initiative, plus the European Commission, Morocco and South Korea (as associate countries).

278 new projects (including EUROSTARS) were approved during the Portuguese Presidency of EUREKA, which represents an 11.2% increase on the previous year. In a period of economic crisis, these figures equate to a very significant development where projects led by Portugal or in which it has participated have had a relevant role, as they currently represent more than 10% of all approved projects. The 33 Portuguese projects have involved 35 enterprises (predominantly SMEs) and 26 research institutions, and correspond to an investment of 38.4 million Euros. The EUROEKA network has now grown with the entry of Bosnia Herzegovina as a National Information Point and South Korea as an associate member. In actual fact, it was the Portuguese Presidency that took the initiative to open EUREKA to associate members from other regions, as has already been the case with South Korea.

A session on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) foreseen under the European Economic Recovery Plan took place on 19 June from 3 pm to 3.30 pm. It was attended by Pedro Pires, from the Microsystems Units at the Directorate-General for the Information Society at the European Commission. He was participating following contacts made by UMIC for support in organising the session paid for by the GPPQ – Office for Promoting the 7th RTD Framework Programme (text in Portuguese). Pedro Pires was taking part to provide information on the Energy-Efficient Buildings, Green Cars and Factories of the Future PPPs, which he did through a presentation entitled Overview on the PPPs: goals, scope and expected impact.

500 projects were presented in the exhibition, including the best ones from the EUREKA Initiative in wide-ranging areas of S&T, with applications in a huge array of sectors of the economy, from agriculture to the aerospace sector.

The 4th Innovation Days included, among other initiatives, a Conference on Energy and Climate Change to fit in with the topic of sustainability, along with Contact Grants for entrepreneurs, technical staff and researchers on subjects such as Sustainable Mobility, Solar Energy and Educational Equipment (with the Ciência Viva Agency).

Participants discussed methods and experience of harnessing R&D results, and were invited to information sessions on support mechanisms for entrepreneurial R&D.

116 NEOTEC projects setting up New Technology Enterprises from scientific universities and institutions benefitted from support from and at the initiative of The Knowledge Society Agency (UMIC) from 2005-2007. This was achieved through the Adl with community co-funding through the POSC - Knowledge Society Operational Programme.

Portugal is a founding member of the EUREKA Initiative, which was set up in 1985. It held the rotating presidency of this initiative from July 2008 to June 2009, when it was transferred in Lisbon to Germany, represented by the Secretary of State for Education and Research, Frieder Meyer-Krahmer.

The EUREKA Initiative promotes science and technology-based R&D in order to stimulate the productivity and competitiveness of European industry through championing links between enterprises manufacturing products and providing services and R&D institutions and universities. One objective in particular is to jointly develop technologically-innovative products that have good prospects on the European or global market. It currently has 38 Member States plus the European Commission.

Last updated ( 22/07/2011 )