The academic underpinnings of the European Innovation Council
Summary and recommendations of the RISE subgroup on EIC
In June 2018, the European Commission published its proposal for Horizon Europe, a €100 billion research and innovation programme that will succeed Horizon 2020.The proposal introduces a European Innovation Council (EIC) to help the EU become a frontrunner in market-creating innovation. The Commission's proposal will establish a one-stop shop to support innovators in turning their high potential and breakthrough ideas into market application, and help the most innovative start-ups and companies scale up their visions. The new EIC will help identify and fund fast-moving, high-risk innovations... with strong potential to create entirely new markets. It will provide direct support to innovators through two main funding instruments, one aimed at the early stages and the other for development and market deployment. The legislative proposal for Horizon Europe is now in the phase of inter-institutional negotiations with the European Council and European Parliament. In order to inform the negotiations and to identify key issues for the implementation phase of EIC, the Research, Innovation and Science Expert (RISE1) group was asked to hold a dedicated workshop on EIC. To facilitate this work the RISE group identified and invited a number of external experts whose work could more deeply inform the discussion. The workshop took place September 12, 2018 in Brussels. Input to the discussion included the legislative proposal for Horizon Europe, oral contributions by European Commission representatives and statements by invited experts and RISE members. The workshop was divided into two sessions, one dealing with the “why?” of the EIC (Challenge: how to identify and qualify Incremental vs Radical vs Disruptive vs Breakthrough vs Market Creating innovation?), the second with “how” to establish and run the EIC (Implementation: Context, Instruments and Learning). This document reflects the main results of the discussion and the recommendations by the RISE members and experts to the European Commission. To enhance the accessibility of the document we have omitted footnotes but a list of references is included at the conclusion of the document.