Belgrade workshop highlights funding opportunities for tech and innovation
More than 250 participants attended two days of workshops in Belgrade on financial opportunities to support technology and innovation, with a focus on the Danube region and the countries of the Western Balkans. The event was organized by the Joint Research Centre (JRC), the European Commission’s science and knowledge service, which employs scientists to carry out research in order to provide independent scientific advice and support to EU policy. The EU4Tech team has supported JRC.
The workshop on ‘Investment Vehicles and Financial Instruments supporting Technology Transfer and Innovation’ was held on 1-2 March 2017 and aimed to explore one of the most crucial elements of research and innovation – the funding.
Together, these activities are part of a process that the JRC Unit for Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer has started in order to develop a community of innovators in the region with the support of the European Union’s Directorate-General for Neighborhood and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR) and Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy (DG REGIO).
The workshop stimulated exchange and discussion on the nature, features and the general suitability of existing financial instruments for the financing of different innovation and tech transfer projects (including start-up creation, joint ventures, licensing transactions etc.). The final results are a definition of the type of financing instruments necessary for the region (in the form of vouchers, financial products, enhancements of features of existing innovation funds etc.) and a plan to accelerate their creation.
The two days of discussions led to the conclusions that despite one or two examples, the region is largely missing early stage support instruments for Technology Transfer. However, it is also clear that any intervention needs to be holistic, supporting development across the full eco-system and able to address or accommodate the present level of development of framework conditions, quality of R&D and maturity of the pipeline of projects, structure of the R&D sector, existence and maturity of external support organizations and services and capacity to both manage and adobe funds.
The two days were attended by about 250 participants and an additional 350 through the streaming link, and included 40 speakers from the European Commission (Directorate-General for Research & Innovation and the JRC), the EU Delegation in Serbia, EIB, EIF, World Bank, United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), regional chambers of commerce, funding organizations, science parks, public authorities, industries and academia.
- Presentation Lisa Cowey, Issues in IP ownership: ‘Rights and Responsibilities’ vs ‘Terms and Conditions’
- JRC site with presentations of the workshop