Commission pilot for European Innovation Council

Commission pilot for European Innovation Council

By Ingemar Pongratz


The Commission has announced previously their plans to launch a new initiative namely the European Innovation Council (EIC). The overall purpose is to create a platform design to include all different instrument that are available at the European level to support entrepreneurs to launch their ideas.

The EIC would include a bottom up support strategy targeting projects with considerable potential to grow and further expand.

The EIC will be part of the Horizon 2020 research and innovation funding scheme and this implies that the European Commission will introduce changes and news into the current programme to launch the EIC. The main objective is to introduce further simplification and provide networking opportunities for entrepreneurs to interact with experts and most importantly with Seed and / or Risk Capital.


The European Commission has launched a Stakeholder Call for Ideas and in addition, organized a workshop to discuss the findings of the consultation. The main findings of the workshop included agreement that the current instrument to support European SME need to be adjusted and improved, including the SME-Instrument and Fast Track to Innovation schemes.


In addition, the potential role of other actors was discussed, including organizations like the European Investment Bank. One of the roles of the EIC would be to identify loan-based instruments that would be used to support European SME’s. In addition, the participants discussed issues such as the evaluation process, how support would provided and the potential role of experienced innovators and investors in the process. The aim would be to morph the EIC with the activities of Horizon 2020.


Interestingly, the role of the academic sector is rather unclear and has created a lot of concern. The academic sector is concerned that they will not be able to benefit from this funding scheme, designed to fund entrepreneurs.

It will be interesting to see how the EIC will develop further. We will certainly report further on this interesting possibility.

Ingemar Pongratz established Fenix Scientific AB / Pongratz Consulting. We help with the preparation of proposals for different national and European funding schemes such as Horizon 2020 or Eureka Eurostars. Please use the Online Contact Form or send a message to:


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