EU Research Commissioner Carlos Moedas has created a fresh new vision for the European Innovation Council (EIC). His plan is to establish the EU as a strong investing platform for entrepreneurs. This new vision will begin with the implementation of a platform that rewards groups of companies and universities working in multi-disciplinary teams and with breakthrough technologies in order to adopt a venture capital-type approach to grants.
This new approach must also provide a better understanding of what entrepreneurs need to know about the current funding landscape in the EU. Commissioner Moedas has paid close attention to how complex the current EU funding is, which more often than not only leads to confusion in the entrepreneurial scene. This makes new technologies hold back on pursuing their startup idea due to legislative restraints. The new concept will be more manageable for entrepreneurs to navigate.
“We have been here for 20 years saying that we are good at creating knowledge, but we are not good at converting it into businesses or products. I think it’s time to stop the conversation and do something about it.”
He wants the EIC to change the game of technology and urges organisations to cultivate talent and close the gap with the US. He hopes his new vision will attract startups that before might never have thought twice about seeking EU funding. Startups, in his personal experience, are looking for speed and not more “red tape”.
A team of four people in the Commission’s Research Department is overseeing the process of building the EIC concept. The plan is to develop a pilot to coincide with Horizon 2020’s midterm review. Moedas wants to consolidate his plan in order to sell the idea of the EIC at the European Research Minister Competitiveness Council meeting next May.