The 6th ETP SMR General Meeting was held on the 10th of March at Trinity College Dublin. The meeting was attended by the ETP SMR members and representatives of EU Institutions.

Mr Christopher North from DG Research & Innovation presented the latest on EU Innovation Policy. Innovation is identified as a key to stimulant for growth and jobs. The EU 2020 target for Research & Innovation aims at investing the 3% of the EU’s GDP in R&D. The EU wants to create an innovation-friendly environment that makes it easier for great ideas to be turned into products and services that will bring our economy growth and jobs. The Horizon 2020 programme for Research and Innovation is 38% higher than the previous FP7.

In this scenario, the European Technology Platforms are tasked with identifying gaps in the regulations or possible barriers to innovation by undertaking joint initiatives and setting up a strategic research and innovation agendas. As the ETPs play a significant role in setting the EC Agenda priorities, the Commission encouraged once again their openness to new partnerships. Milan Grohol, from the « Raw Materials, Metals, Minerals, and Forest-based industries » Unit of DG GROW, encouraged the ETPs to submit proposals in the view of the next Calls for Commitments planned in 2015, 2017 and 2019. Through these Calls, the EC is looking for all relevant players, a high number of actors and sectors, to engage together across the whole EU. Together they should design a vision for 2030, 2040, 2050.

During the meeting, the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland (FHNW) became a new Member of the ETP SMR. The FHNW provides undergraduate education, consulting, and applied research and development. It offers a greatly enhanced infrastructure and a wide choice of programmes and facilities. By joining ETP SMR the FHNW wishes to extend its network, to get involved in projects in the fields of environmental engineering & biotechnology / resource efficiency and to contribute to the development of eco-efficient solutions.

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