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EIT’s 2018 Call for Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KICs) Proposals

The European Institute of Innovation & Technology (EIT) launched a competition for new Innovation Communities in the areas of urban mobility (EIT Urban Mobility) and added value      manufacturing (EIT Manufacturing). The winners will join Europe’s largest innovation community to bring solutions to European citizens.

The competition is open until July 2018 and the winning partnerships will be announced in December 2018. The proposals should be submitted by partners from business, higher education and research institutions to tackle societal challenges by developing innovative products and services. “An EIT Innovation Community is a unique long-term partnership with a potential budget of up to €400 million for the first seven years of its operations. Its set-up must be born from a strong desire to do things differently, with like-minded people and organisations ready to experiment and operate at the boundaries of innovation to create true innovation ecosystems with high interconnectivity,” said Peter Olesen, Chairman of the EIT Governing Board.

The EIT has been created to enhance Europe’s ability to innovate by integrating, for the first time at the EU level, education and entrepreneurship with research and innovation. To achieve this goal, the EIT follows an ‘investor approach’, which stands for a focus on identifying the best strategic opportunities and selecting a portfolio of world-class partnerships – the KICs – to deliver them.

The EIT is an integral part of the EU's Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (Horizon 2020 for the period 2014-2020) which brings together all existing Union research and innovation initiatives. In order to promote cross-fertilisation, the EIT and its KICs exploit synergies and complementarities with existing European and other relevant policies and programmes.

During the period 2014-2020, the EIT is funded through a contribution of EUR 2.35 billion from Horizon 2020. The EIT budget covers three main priorities during this period: the necessary expenditure for consolidating the five established KICs; the set-up of three new KICs launched in two waves (in 2016 and 2018 respectively); and dissemination and outreach activities and administrative expenditure. Funding available for post-2020 activities depends on the future EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation.

The EIT’s contribution to the KIC’s expenditure will not exceed 25% of its overall budget. The remaining 75% should be financed from other non-EIT sources of financing (e.g. mainly partners’ own resources and other sources including national/regional funding, EU funds, etc.). The financing modalities are defined in accordance with the EIT Principles for financing, monitoring and evaluating KIC activities and the EIT Financial Regulation.

The EIT may award a grant of up to EUR 4 million to cover activities for Legal readiness, Operational readiness and fostering EIT Identity and other initial KIC activities to each of the two designated partnerships in order to support the efficient setting up of the two KICs.

An overview of the preparation and submission of a KIC proposal - further information, including guidance for applicants on how to submit proposals, is available here through the KICs Call page of the EIT website, or directly through the Participant Portal .

The electronic proposal submission system opens on 16 January 2018 on the KICs Call page of the EIT website. Only proposals submitted through the electronic proposal submission system will be accepted.