The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) is the first European initiative to fully integrate the three sides of the "Knowledge Triangle" (Higher Education, Research, Business - Innovation). Measures funded by the EIT aim at transforming education and research results into tangible commercial innovation opportunities and fostering the entrepreneurial spirit of young researchers across Europe.

EIT’s operative activities are delivered through operative European partnerships known as “Knowledge and Innovation Communities” (KICs) – highly integrated public-private networks of universities, research organisations and businesses – which are coordinated by a Governing Board and a Headquarter (located in Budapest), ensuring strategic management.

The cornerstone of the EIT initiative is direct involvement of business stakeholders, including SMEs, in all strategic, operational, and financial aspects of the Institute. This is also evident in the funding scheme: the EIT provides seed financing to the KICs. The rest of the KICs’ financial needs is to be covered by the KIC partners and other sources (Horizon Europe, ESI Funds, national and regional funding schemes, enterprises etc.).

The KICs are selected by the EIT Governing Board and operate across Europe. The KICs cover the following 10 thematic areas: climate change; renewable energies; the next generation of information and communication technologies; raw materials; innovation for healthy living and active ageing; food4future; added value manufacturing; urban mobility; (upcoming new ones 2021-2027) cultural and creative sectors and industries; water, marine and maritime sectors and ecosystems.

On 28 May 2021, the new EIT Regulation and the new "Strategic Innovation Agenda" (SIA) for the period 2021-2027 were published. Two new goals are evident: Promoting innovation and business potential in higher education through appropriately focused calls for proposals, and increasing the regional impact of KICs. The EIT is also encouraged to take appropriate supporting actions and initiatives in addressing COVID-19.

The EIT is part of Pillar III “Innovative Europe” of HORIZON EUROPE. Synergies are expected with all parts of the new EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation, in particular with the European Innovation Council (EIC). The EIT budget is EUR 2,965 billion.

For more Information, please visit the website of the EIT or the website of the Austrian Research Promotion Agency https://www.ffg.at/europa/eit .


Johanna Ringhofer Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research