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Horizon Europe will promote market innovation through the European Innovation Council

The Horizon Europe program aims to boost science and technology within the European Union by increasing investment for people with high qualifications and cutting-edge researchers. It will also boost industrial competitiveness and innovation performance, fostering market-creating innovation, through the European Innovation Council (EIC); one-stop shop of new creation, and of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology.

In addition, the European Commission has proposed to significantly increase the budget of the Horizon Europe program to 100,000 million euros. With only 6% of the world population, Europe would represent the 20% of the total investment in R&D. It would be responsible for one third of quality scientific publications and holds the world leadership in industrial sectors such as pharmaceutical, chemist, mechanical engineering and fashion.


Horizon Europe is also focused on the investment of R&D&I to shape the future of the European Union. It has the objective of protecting, empowering and defending the values ​​for which the Commission is guided. It also aims to tackle climate change, has 35% of the budgetary target assigned to it, and wants to contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.

New support instruments have been created for entrepreneurs of the European Innovation Council (EIC). The EIC will have a very advanced nature with great growth potential and high risk for investors, they will support innovators into the creation of the future markets, leveraging private investment to grow within their businesses. This support will be focused on the innovative activity, assuming the derived risks, with an agile follow-up and adaptation to the projects, as well as a proactive management. Within this idea, two tools will be developed:

  1. Pathfinder: grants (from ideas to pre-commercial technology)
  2. Accelerator: subsidy and capital (marketing and growth)

In mid-March, the EIC pilot will be approved with the publication of calls before the summer. The main features of this new pilot will be:

  1. It will not be prescriptive in terms of topics, sectors or technologies
  2. It will support innovations from different sectors
  3. It will cover the entire value chain
  4. It will finance high-risk innovations
  5. It will proactively manage objectives and progressive milestones and with the possibility of reorienting projects
  6. It will provide complementary support services: coaching, mentoring, technical assistance, etc.

Guillermo Álvarez from CDTI spoke during the ‘Viernes de Desarrollo’ event about the importance of the Sustainable Development Goals, since they are the main plan to achieve a better and more sustainable future. These objectives address global challenges, including those related to poverty, inequality, climate, environmental degradation, prosperity and peace and justice. The Objectives are interconnected so that the application of each ideal is achieved by 2030.

In addition, this new season, the policies and the circular economy stand out to achieve more sustainable objectives in the agenda of the year 2030.


During the event celebrated in March 1st in Pamplona, framed into the ‘Viernes de Desarrollo” of the Government of Navarra, Montse Guerrero, from Enterprise Europe Network Navarra (AIN), developed the opportunities that the programme will offer to SMEs and facilities to access European financing and new markets; as well as the management of specific coaching services for SMEs benefiting from European funding, which is offered from AIN.

Guillermo Álvarez Jiménez, of the Directorate of EU Programs and Territorial Cooperation of the CDTI, outlined the current proposal on the innovation program that is being debated in Brussels. For his part, Luis Sánchez Álvarez, Seconded National Expert of the European Commission, explained the advantages of the European Innovation Council, and the implication that this entails. With the EIC, a single window will be created to bring the leading technologies, with high potential and most promising from the laboratory to the commercial application, and to help both the established companies and the most innovative emerging companies to develop their ideas. The head of European Programs of zabala Innovation Consulting, Camino Correia, presented the possible and desirable alignment of the RIS3 Strategy of Navarre with the Horizon Europe Programme.

A round table with the clusters of Navarra closed the day with the interventions of Javier Belarra (ACAN), Sandra Aguirre (Nagrifood), Manuel Rodríguez (Enercluster), Mar González (Functional Print) and Sara Manzano (Salud-ADItech), and their positioning before the new opportunities that the Horizon Europe Programme will offer to them.

At the closing ceremony, councillor Ollo recalled that “80% of European funds are finally implemented by the regions, so the future of innovation in Europe goes through interregional cooperation”. He also insisted that “Navarra must commit to developing a future strategy whose objective is to achieve synergy between our innovation strategy, the structural funds and the future Horizon Europe Programme“.

In Navarra we have 149 R+D+i initiatives and a subsidy of 57 million for 72 entities, of which 57 are companies. But what is important is that these projects allow us to be at the forefront of R&D&I because we collaborate with European leaders on innovation.

The last day of the ‘Viernes de Desarrollo Económico’, was promoted by Mikel Irujo, in the framework of the ‘Foros Permanentes de Encuentro -Topagune Iraunkorrak’, in collaboration with ZABALA Innovation Consulting. Representatives of the European Commission, the Ministry of Science, Innovation and Universities, the Government of Navarra and business leaders met in Pamp