EIT ICT Labs and FI-PPP signing Memorandum of Collaboration on 21 June 2012

Press release


Building stronger synergies between research, innovation and education in European ICT


An agreement bringing together EIT ICT Labs of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology and the EU's Future Internet Public-Private Partnership (FI-PPP) will be signed on 21 June in the presence of Neelie Kroes, European Commission Vice-President for Digital Agenda, and Androulla Vassiliou, Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth. 


The Memorandum of Collaboration lays down the principles for future collaboration between the two European initiatives aiming at building stronger synergies between research, innovation and education in the ICT sector. Aligning efforts and expertise in this way will generate important network effects, meaning more start-ups, more patents and more economic growth for Europe. 


"This agreement is a perfect example of the cooperation we want to develop between the EIT and other initiatives within Horizon 2020, the new EU programme for research and innovation. Combining EIT ICT Labs' talent and knowledge with the firepower of Future Internet PPP will enable us to deliver more effective results and to inspire the entrepreneurial leaders of tomorrow”, says Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou.


EIT ICT Labs is one of the Institute's three 'knowledge and innovation communities', which bring together top universities and research institutes with leading businesses across Europe, while the Future Internet PPP promotes the development of European-scale platforms for smart systems in areas such as transport, health and energy. 


“ICT is a driver for economic growth and increased quality of life. As ICT innovation players at the European level EIT ICT Labs and the Future Internet PPP join forces to bring these benefits to European citizens. EIT ICT Labs is proud to bring its ICT education and innovation skills to the table to jointly with the FI-PPP drive the uptake of future Internet technologies and services.” says Prof. Willem Jonker, CEO of EIT ICT Labs.


Mikko Riepula, Project Manager for the FI PPP support action CONCORD, further comments, “Within FI PPP and EIT ICT Labs we both cover a multitude of shared objectives and have considerable diversity through the numerous projects and approaches conducive to innovation as such. Now it is time also to seek synergies and get aligned, both initiatives being such major investments in the European scale.”


The Future Internet PPP and EIT ICT Labs will focus on ICT infrastructure, entrepreneurship, business development, education and training. The agreement will also enable both parties to build on the results of Future Internet PPP projects in an effective way. The signing ceremony takes place in the Berlaymont offices of Vice-president Kroes in presence of Commissioner Vassiliou. The Memorandum of Collaboration will be signed by Prof Willem Jonker, CEO EIT ICT Labs and  a sample of legal representatives of the 154 participants in the Future Internet PPP, at the ceremony.


To find out more:
DG Education and Culture:

Commissioner Vassiliou's website:



Future Internet:


Contacts European Commission: Dennis Abbott: +32 2295 9258, Dina Avraam: +32 2295 9667, Ryan Heath: +32 2296 1716, Linda Cain +32 2299 9019


Contact EIT ICT Labs: Johanna Gavefalk, email:


Overall Participation at Signing Ceremony:

·         Commission DG CONNECT:  

o    Neelie Kroes, Commission Vice-president for the Digital Agenda

o    Zoran Stančič, Deputy Director General of CONNECT

o    Jesus Villasante, Head of Unit of CONNECT.E3 "Net Innovation"


·         Commission DG EAC:  

o    Androulla Vassiliou, Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism, Sport, Media and Youth

o    Xavier Prats Monné, Deputy Direct General of EAC

o    Lucia Ricalde, Head of Unit of EAC.C2 "European Institute of Innovation and Technology; economic partnerships"


·         EIT ICT Labs: 

o    Willem Jonker, CEO EIT ICT Labs 

o    Martti Mäntylä, CSO EIT ICT Labs

o    Klaus Beetz, Business Director EIT ICT Labs

o    Olivier Festor, Resarch Director EIT ICT Labs


·         Future Internet PPP: 

o    Michael Fassnauer, CEO of UBImet

o    Mikko Riepula, Project Coordinator of the FI-PPP Support Action and researcher at  Aalto University

o    Daniel Pays, Director of Advanced Studies at Thales

o    Alfredo Acebal, Representative of Telefonica in Brussels (Telefonica is project coordinator of the core technology project FI-WARE)




About EIT ICT Labs

EIT ICT Labs is selected as one of the first three Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KIC) supported by the European Institute of Innovation & Technology (EIT). Our mission is to turn Europe into a global leader in Information and Communication Technologies - ICT innovations.


Sustainable energy supply, intelligent traffic management and increasing the quality of life are just some of the challenges that society, business and politics will face in the future. Innovative ICT technologies offer new ways of giving a much needed boost to finding alternative solutions. Education, Research and Business are three elements in the EIT ICT Labs “Knowledge Triangle” and key drivers of the knowledge-based society. EIT ICT Labs aims to create a new breed of innovators and entrepreneurs that can develop breakthrough ideas - supported all the way to the



EIT ICT Labs locations play a vital role as virtual and live meeting places for project members, students, entrepreneurs, SMEs and start-ups as well as major industrial partners searching for new talents and new innovative opportunities. Mobility is a key factor – we bring people together across geographical and organizational borders. EIT ICT Labs – Bringing ICT Innovations to Life.


About FI-PPP

With over a billion users world-wide, the Internet is one of history’s great success stories. Its global, integrated communications infrastructures and service platforms underpin the fabric of the European economy and society. Yet today’s Internet was designed in the 1970s, for purposes that bear little resemblance to current and future usage scenarios. Mismatches between the original design goals and how the Internet is being used are beginning to hamper its potential. Many challenges in the areas of technology, business, society and governance will have to be overcome if the future development of the Internet is to sustain the networked society of tomorrow.


To answer these challenges, the European Commission has launched the Future Internet Public-Private Partnership Programme (FI-PPP). The main goal is to advance a shared vision for harmonised European-scale technology platforms and their implementation, as well as the integration and harmonisation of the relevant policy, legal, political and regulatory frameworks. As set forth in the Digital Agenda for Europe, these are considered to be prerequisites for realizing a European online Digital Single Market (DSM) and, more broadly, an inclusive knowledge society.



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