Scouting for FP7 Opportunities

The European Commission invests big money in ICT research: the total budget for the upcoming calls in the Commission's 7th Framework Program (FP7) is around €1.5 billion. The Commission is committed to spending a significant percentage of that money on supporting innovative SMEs.

Have you ever considered that part of that budget could be yours to address items on your R&D roadmap?

But how exactly does this work? How do you get yourself into one of these projects?

The ICT Proposers' Days: your project starts here

Many of the EU funded projects start at a "brokerage event". Such a brokerage event looks like a big research bazaar, where people pitch their project ideas, often supported by poster sessions. The program often allows plenty of time for networking, discussions and plan making. (Be sure to check out this article for more on brokerage days.)

During the last week of September 2012, the Commission organizes its brokerage event in Poland. The agenda for this event can be found on this website. There will be a lot of attention to topics such as:

  • Future networks
  • Internet of things
  • Cloud computing
  • Connected media
  • Trustworthy ICT
  • Digital enterprise
  • Scalable data analytics
  • Smart cities and mobility

4 reasons why you should attend brokerage days

If you are an innovative SME active in ICT, you should consider visiting the Poland event (or other upcoming brokerage events) because it’s an excellent opportunity to:

  1. Learn what research topics are hot in your domain;
  2. Network with some of the top companies, researchers and experts in your industry;
  3. Join emerging projects and be in the running for receiving R&D funding;
  4. Pitch and benchmark your own research ideas against the Europe's finest ICT researchers.

Why don’t more SMEs join then?

Many SMEs find the threshold to join such an event (and the subsequent projects) too high: there is traveling involved which comes with its own cost in time and money. The sheer size of some of these events (250 to 1000+ participants spread over multiple tracks) might scare you off too. You might face difficulties translating the often abstract project ideas into your own company's R&D challenges.

That is why Sirris sends Wim Codenie, Philippe Thiran, Tom Tourwé and Elena Tsiporkova to Poland to scout for tangible research and funding opportunities. If you are interested in their findings or want to discuss your research needs before the team goes to Poland, please contact them ASAP. You can always send an email to receive updates once the event is over.