Politics / Law
EC launches innovation partnerships to foster sustainable research
Brussels – With three new Innovation Partnerships, the European Commission (EC) intends to eliminate weaknesses, bottlenecks and obstacles in the European research and innovation system. The key challenges to be met are the supply of raw materials, sustainable agriculture, and active and healthy ageing. It’s the Commission’s view that all three require a more concerted innovation effort across the public and private sector, in order to improve quality of life and position Europe as a global leader. The agricultural productivity and sustainability partnership aims at the reversal of the recent trend of diminishing productivity gains and targets to improve soil quality to a satisfactory level by 2020. In order to increase innovation supporting exploration, extraction and processing of raw materials, the Commission launched the raw materials partnership. The project is set to improve recycling of electronic equipment and other waste and calls for the development of substitutes for critical raw materials. Finally, the European Innovation Partnership on active and healthy ageing seeks solutions for the demographic change in Europe. The number of European citizens aged 65 and over will double over the next 50 years. This poses the European care and social systems to a challenge and calls for redesigning these systems in the interest of patients, healthcare systems and the innovative industry.