Individuals make innovation a reality

Written by Dirk Jan van den Berg on 26 November 2018 in Thought Leader
Thought Leader

Making innovation happen is more than just a motto for the EIT, writes Dirk Jan van den Berg.

Photo credit: EIT


The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) believes in big ideas, and we believe in the talented entrepreneurs and outstanding innovators who make innovation happen.

They turn these big ideas into reality: into products, services and jobs for Europe. Together with the entire EIT Community, Europe’s largest innovation network with more than 1000 partners, we deliver unique support needed for more European big ideas.

We will increase our impact by creating two new EIT Innovation Communities in December 2018, tackling two major challenges: urban mobility and added-value manufacturing.


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These will offer new opportunities for growth and jobs and allow us to deliver innovative solutions from the excellent research base in Europe.

In the upcoming Horizon Europe programme, we are proposing to address more European challenges in priority areas such as security, integration, water and culture and creativity.

Our logic is simple – empower innovators by more than simply providing finance. What does this mean? It means creating the conditions needed for a sustainable pipeline of ideas and talent, leading to truly disruptive innovation.

As a one-stop shop for innovation, the EIT gives innovators access to everything they need to succeed, rather than predefining support.

“As a Union, we must continue to advance innovation and entrepreneurship, investing in the thousands of projects that will do more than make nice headlines”

Just last month, at the EIT Awards in Budapest, citizens across Europe cast thousands of votes for the ‘EIT Public Award’, recognising Laura Soucek as this year’s winner. Laura is founder and CEO of Peptomyc S.L. - a peptide-based solution that can serve as a new treatment option for cancer patients.

Laura is based in Barcelona, Spain, and is supported by EIT Health. Speaking after receiving the award, she said: ‘I recognise myself in the EIT’s motto “making innovation happen”. I wanted to make a change, efficiently and in the smartest way possible.’

The self-belief, intelligence and sheer determination of innovators such as Laura are powering Europe’s big ideas.

With the support of the EIT, Europe will make these big ideas a reality, a pipeline of truly great achievements; and the more we invest, the greater the potential returns for society and the European economy.

The EIT is Europe’s leading innovation network. We bring together the talent, the expertise and the finance. The EIT also reaches out to moderate and modest innovator regions, mustering Europe’s talents in a pan-European spirit.

Standing together, as an innovation community, Europe is an innovation giant. As a Union, we must continue to advance innovation and entrepreneurship, investing in the thousands of projects that will do more than make nice headlines.

Together, we can cure cancer; together we will find solutions to climate change; together we will create a bright future for Europe.

About the author

Dirk Jan van den Berg is chairman of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) governing board.

eit.europa.eu @EITeu

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