At the Partnerships for Regional Innovation (PRI) High-Level Event on 28 March, the European Commission launched a call for Expression of Interest for European regions to become Regional Innovation Valleys (RIVs), to strengthen European innovation ecosystems connecting all EU territories, address Europe’s societal challenges and foster stronger cohesion.
The Regional Innovation Valleys – which shall harness the potential of deep-tech innovation across the different EU territories and address the innovation divide – are a key initiative under Flagship 3 of the New European Innovation Agenda (NEIA). The aim is to identify 100 regions committed to better coordinating their research and innovation investments and policies and to collaborating on interregional innovation projects. The initiative builds on smart specialisation strategies across Europe and, where applicable, on participation in the PRI Pilot Action.
All regions willing to join the endeavour are encouraged to set out their commitment by 18 September 2023. Questions can be directed to: RTD-REGIOemail@example.com
Learn more here and access the call for Expression of Interest here.
In the meantime, the Commission is also in the process of launching two RIV calls for proposals on 17 May 2023 under the European Innovation Ecosystems (EIE) part of Horizon Europe (€60 million budget, deadline 17 October 2023, initially planned to be opened only in January 2024), and the Interregional Innovation Investments (I3) Instrument of the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). With a focus on addressing the innovation divide, a total of €170 million is allocated over the coming years, €100 million and €70 million respectively.
ERRIN has been closely following the discussions around Regional Innovation Valleys as a key initiative under Flagship 3 of the NEIA. Most recently, Policy WG organised a meeting on “NEIA Flagship 3 – state of play and what’s coming” on 21 March.
In alignment with the Commission’s announcements on the call for EoI for RIVs and RIV calls for proposals, a survey to map ERRIN members’ interest in the EIE RIV call for proposals is now open, to facilitate consortium building under this call. Logged-in ERRIN members are invited to learn more and share their interest by 20 April here.
A dedicated Policy Working Group meeting will also be organised on 25 April. This will be an excellent opportunity for ERRIN members to discuss the key points of the call to increase understanding and better prepare for applying, as well as exchange ideas. More details about the meeting and registration by 20 April are available for logged-in ERRIN members here.