Research and innovation
Response to the "Europe 2020" strategy
At the heart of the Europe 2020 strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth, innovation represents for the European Union the best way to meet the economic and social challenges in a context of economic globalisation. Innovation (of products, services, processes) notably addresses the issues of reduction of energy resources, climate change, health, or ageing of the population in Europe. Research concerns all the means deployed for innovation: technological and applied research, research and development in companies, clusters, and technology transfer (transfer of research discoveries to companies for commercial use). Research, development and innovation thus form the elements of a sustainable development strategy.
Consequently, the cohesion policy of the European Union for the programming period of 2014-2020 is organised as follows: the first of eleven thematic priorities aims to “strengthen research, technological development and innovation”. Cross-border territories provide an important dimension to the objective of innovation. In addition, the European programme “Horizon 2020” finances research and innovation for the 2014-2020 period. It is the third largest European programme in financial terms, with nearly 80 billion euros proposed by the European Commission. Under certain conditions (different types of expenditure), the same project could benefit from funding both from the cohesion funds and from the “Horizon 2020” fund.
Photo copyright: European Community 2005