Soledad Cabezón Ruiz MEP (S&D, Spain) has tabled a question on Horizon 2020 action to link University research with the end of the R&D&I chain on 12 May.
Ms. Cabezón Ruiz wanted to know whether action is going to be taken and infrastructure provided to step up mid-range ‘technology readiness level’ (TRL) activities; whether prior to providing support for activities that turn research into innovation, there are plans to focus efforts more on TRLs 4 to 7, leaving the bulk of the work on TRLs 8 and beyond to the industry that is interested in marketing the innovative products in question; and whether there are plans to set up a scheme for European Research Council calls for proposals on technology. View here the full question.
The answer was provided by Commissioner for Research Carlos Moedas on 30 June. Mr. Moedas stated that Horizon 2020 funded actions typically contain a mix of collaborators dealing with different activities along the research and innovation cycle and at different TRLs. Thus, he argued that even within projects with high overall TRLs, there will normally be opportunities for the involvement of participants working at lower TRL levels. Besides, the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) and its Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KICs) were set up to enhance Europe's innovation capacity.
The most important is that the KICs run regular calls for researchers and innovators to support the passage from TRL 4 or 5 to TRL 7. Finally, Mr. Moedas also announced that the European Research Council (ERC) Work Programme for 2017 will be adopted in July 2016. It will contain all details of future ERC calls and actions for 2017.