In Luxembourg, Luxinnovation is the national contact point (NCP) for the European research and innovation programme Horizon 2020. The agency is positioned as a privileged interlocutor for companies wishing to solicit financial support.
Luxinnovation is also a partner in NCP network projects. In this role, the agency organised a series of workshops from 4 to 7 June. The workshops were part of the NCPs CaRE project, which is a Horizon 2020 network project of NCPs working on topics such as climate, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials.
Over 100 countries
“The project has 23 partners from different European countries who are directly and actively involved,” explains Sanna Alaranta, Advisor – European R&D and Innovation Support at Luxinnovation. “Another 26 organisations from Europe and beyond participate as associated partners.” Overall, the NCP CaRE network covers over 100 countries.
The working session at the beginning of June allowed Luxinnovation to exchange experience with colleagues in other countries. The agency also organised a one-day training on Horizon 2020 proposal writing and innovation management for the participating NCPs. Luxinnovation is the task leader for organising trainings in the project.
“We have thus contributed to improving the level of competence and knowledge of the various NPCs. This was also an excellent opportunity to highlighting the strengths of two Luxembourg players, namely Luxinnovation and the Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST),” she says.
A visit to the institute’s facilities was also organised to provide a better understanding of the scope of action and some of the projects in which the LIST is involved.
These included, for example, the Nature4Cities project, which focuses on creating a platform for nature-based solutions that offers technical solutions, methods and tools to empower urban planning and decision-making. The aim of the platform is to help address the contemporary environmental, social and economic challenges that European cities face.
Next – and last – call in July
Overall, Luxembourg companies and institutions have 10 successful project participations funded from the Horizon 2020 SC5 programme (“Climate Action, Environment, Resource Efficiency and Raw Materials”). Thus the country has a success rate of 22% in this programme, compared with the overall success rate of 11%.
“Participating in a Horizon 2020 NCP project such as the NCPs CaRE and organising these events here in Luxembourg has enabled us to establish our visibility and credibility at European level with the various parties concerned, in our key-mission to identify partner companies and institutes likely to respond to European calls for proposals,” says Ms Alaranta.
The next and last Horizon 2020 “SC5” call will be launched within one month, with deadlines in February 2020. The calls will cover topics ranging from climate and biodiversity research to the demonstration of circular economic solutions in various sectors.
The European Commission will organise an information and partnership event on this subject on 16 and 17 September in Brussels.