Working Group Leaders

Representatives of Brussels-based offices leading the work of Innovation & Investment Working Group.

Innovation & Investment WG Leader


Gabriele Pedrini

The Autonomous Province of Trento

Innovation & Investment WG Leader


Marie Vaugeois

Occitanie Europe

Wim De Kinderen


Wim De Kinderen

Brainport Eindhoven EU Office Brussels

Innovation & Investment

As stated in the mission letter by Ms Ursula Von Der Leyen to the Commissioner for the Internal Market, Mr Thierry Breton, “Europe’s industry provides a livelihood for millions, and is a driver of jobs, growth and competitiveness”. However, only a single market in line with the social market approach, which ensures it adaptation to the modern economy and to new business models, will allow the EU’s industry, small businesses and entrepreneurs to grow, scale up and employ more people.

The Innovation & Investment Working Group aims to monitor the main initiatives put in place by the European institutions under the priority “an economy that works for the people” and more specifically targeting SMEs, which have a key role in thriving regional innovation ecosystems as they represent 99% of all businesses and account for 85% of new jobs created in the last five years.

Last Working Group Meetings

Last Working Group Meetings


Webinar: Financing green transition

Agnieszka Wieczorek Jetha

In light of the current COVID-19 crisis, the event will be organised as a webinar. We thank you in advance for your understanding. Please register via this link. If you have already signed up, you


Postponed: Improve innovative SMEs access to finance: new SME Strategy and alternative financing models

Ilaria d'Auria

In light of the current COVID-19 concerns in Brussels, we regret to inform you that this Working Group meeting will be postponed. We will communicate the new date as soon as possible.   Join us for

WG Events

WG Events

Demand-driven ePitching session facilitated by the EIC to fight COVID-19

The European Innovation Council is organising an ePitching session on 30th April 2020 to match innovative solutions developed by companies to the emerging needs of the healthcare sector.

Opportunities to tackle the COVID-19 Crisis through Innovation Procurement

This one-hour webinar provides guidance to public buyers on how to proceed in the short- and middle/long-term periods in procuring the supplies and services required.

Postponed: Improve innovative SMEs access to finance: new SME Strategy and alternative financing models

The first Innovation and Investment Working Group meeting of the year will be a chance to discuss the WG's scope, with an enhanced focus on the SME component of regional innovation ecosystems.

Innovative procurement in small municipalities for digital and circular transformation

Three Swedish municipalities will share insights on innovation procurement at a seminar in March.

Place-based innovation ecosystems: why context matters

A science for policy workshop on 'placed-based innovation ecosystems: why context matters', will take place in Brussels in March. The workshop will present 5 case studies before an open debate with policymakers.

Free entrepreneurship workshop for researchers on creating Innoven-driven enterprises

A free workshop on entrepreneurship for researchers is being hosted by the STARTED project next month. The Brussels' based workshop aims to foster innovation among researchers and to provide them with skills to develop.

WG Related Content

WG Related Content

Commission extends Temporary Framework to accelerate coronavirus research

Recently adopted state aid rules are to accelerate research related to coronavirus research and development.

New pilot programme: ESCALAR

The European Investment Fund has launched a new pilot programme to address the financing gap experienced by high growth European companies (scale-ups).

Additional measures to mobilise investements and resources - CRII+

To complement the Coronavirus Response Investment Initiative, the Commission has announced a new, complementary package. The Coronavirus Response Investment Initiative Plus (CRII+) package introduces flexibility to ensure non-utilised support can be enacted. 

Immediate release of funds to tackle COVID-19

The Council adopted legislative act to rapidly react to the surrounding pandemic amending the rules of the structural and investment funds. Mechanisms will enter into force on 1 April.

European Investment Bank proposes package in response to COVID-19

Following the strain placed on the European economy by the rapid spread of the new coronavirus, the European Investment Bank (EIB) has proposed a plan to mobilise €40 billion of financing.

Key actions from SME strategy

The European Commission published its new 'SME Strategy for a sustainable and digital Europe', targeting the 25 million European SMEs, which are deeply woven into the fabric of Europe, and provide 2 out of 3 jobs while contributing to 50% of the EU’s GDP. 

Latest Updates

  • By Hilary Webb

Next Generation EU proposed as recovery programme in new EU budget

The European Commission has put forward its proposal for the recovery plan, Next Generation EU, which will be included within the long-term EU budget. The recovery instrument should ensure the sustainable, inclusive and fair recovery for the EU.

  • By Hilary Webb

EUvsVirus Matchathon extended following success

Following the largest ever match-making event, the EUvsVirus Matchathon is being extended to allow its projects and partners to keep developing solutions.

  • By Ilaria d'Auria

Contribute to the EASME study on the effectiveness of public innovation support for SMEs

The European Commission’s Executive Agency for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (EASME) commissioned a study on the effectiveness of public innovation support for SMEs in Europe.

  • By Hilary Webb

EIT Crisis Response Initiative launched

EIT has launched the EIT Crisis Response Initiative as part of the EU's collective response to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis.

  • By Hilary Webb

European Entrepreneurial Region (EER) Award applications re-open

Applications for the European Entrepreneurial Region (EER) Award have re-opened with the 2021 and 2022 application process being merged for the EER label to be extended over two years.

  • By Hilary Webb

EIT Manufacturing: Gazelle Accelerator programme

EIT Manufacturing is calling for participation in a Call of Interest for SMEs and start-ups as part of the Gazelle Accelerator programme.