New innovation advantage for Canadian companies through access to technology, expertise, and markets in Europe and beyond
What is EUREKA?
EUREKA is an international network for market-driven industrial R&D that includes over 40 economies from the EU, Europe, Israel, South Korea, and now Canada. Through Canada’s associate membership in EUREKA, Canadian innovators have a new advantage in accessing technology, expertise, and markets in Europe and beyond. NRC is the national contact point for EUREKA.
How long has EUREKA been active?
EUREKA has been operating successfully since 1985 supporting market-oriented R&D and innovation projects in all technology sectors. Initially a European intergovernmental network, EUREKA has expanded beyond Europe to include Israel, South Korea, and now Canada. To date, EUREKA has resulted in:
- 4,000 projects
- 10 billion euro in public funding
- 19 billion euro in private investment
- 93 billion euro of additional economic activity
- 378,000 jobs created or safeguarded
Who belongs to the network?
In addition to the European Commission, EUREKA has 40 member countries, including Israel. These members are now reaching out globally to enhance cooperation with countries outside Europe, such as Associated Country members South Korea and Canada.
Who can participate in EUREKA projects?
With the goal of increasing competitiveness in world markets, EUREKA brings together small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs), large companies, research centres, universities, and other innovators from EUREKA countries to work together on market-driven industrial R&D.
How are projects financed?
Projects are financed through national public and private funding mechanisms, including NRC’s Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP) for Canadian SMEs. EUREKA simplifies the funding process by helping to cut through the “red tape” that can slow down industry led projects involving multiple international participants: it does so by coordinating national financial support rather than trying to harmonize the funding rules of the member countries.
How does EUREKA work?
Businesses and other participants in a EUREKA project decide the way a project comes together and evolves, leading to a fast and flexible approach to reach markets before the competition.
EUREKA projects fall under one of three types – Individual, Cluster or Eurostar – and are:
- Any size and flexible – needing only a minimum of two independent partners from two EUREKA member countries,
- Launched in virtually all civilian technological areas where there is market potential
- Planned under thematic networks in specific areas of business or technology
- Bottom-up with free choice in terms of topic, partner and timeframe
- Not bound to a country’s research program or national call for proposals
- As non-bureaucratic as possible, with only necessary reporting requirements
- Crystal clear on IP – participants retain complete IP ownership and negotiate IP exploitation amongst themselves on a project-by-project basis
Some project results
Results stemming from more than 200 R&D projects each year can be found everywhere. They include
- GSM mobile phone technologies
- navigation systems
- smartcards for electronic commerce
- novel ways of generating energy
- software for special effects used in film
- leading-edge medical devices
- environmental technologies
EUREKA and NRC
NRC houses and manages Canada’s EUREKA National Office and provides companies with a first contact point in Canada for EUREKA’s global network. NRC and its partners can connect to national programs and can also connect Canadian organizations with potential partners and opportunities. NRC’s Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP) can provide funding for EUREKA projects to eligible SMEs.
Melanie Cullins, National Project Coordinator
Kelly Thompson, EUREKA Program Officer
Bill Dobson, National Project Coordinator (for Canadian SMEs)
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