EIT ICT Labs Partner Event 2013: Target & Focus to Boost ICT Innovation
At the Partner Event in Paris on April 17-18 almost 400 partner representatives and stakeholders came together at “La Maison Internationale”, at Université Paris to learn about the state of play, the Call 2014, followed by intensive networking and workshops to draft new proposals.
“I really enjoyed our partner event - it was energising and full of interaction between our partners; targeted at the creation of focussed proposals to the call for Business Plan 2014”, says CEO Willem Jonker.
The aim of the Partner Event was to launch the Call 2014, setting out the lines for the Business Plan 2014 and to meet and match the best solutions to address societal challenges and to network. An extra to this all was the pre-round for the EIT Entrepreneurship award 2013.
The program, moderated by Johanna Gavefalk, Marketing & Communications Director EIT ICT Labs, started with a presentation to get acquainted with the EIT ICT Labs strategy, procedures and the do's and don'ts by Stan Smits, COO EIT ICT Labs. Many new participants from established partners in Berlin, Eindhoven, Helsinki, Paris, Stockholm and Trento - as well as those who will join more actively in the next or coming years - from Budapest, London and Madrid, got a good chance to learn “all what one should know” about EIT ICT Labs.
The urge to target and focus was essential in the launch of the Call 2014 – presented by CEO Willem Jonker and CSO Martti Mäntylä from EIT ICT Labs. As activities get more matured so does expectations on results and deliverables, e g business aspects of innovative research projects – products to market, technology transfer, coached startups, graduated students etc. Gilles Babinet, Digital Champion for France at the European Commission shed the light on five notions that will change the world.
The Action line leaders’ 3-minutes introduction pitches gave the audience a good overview of key activities and plans. In order to facilitate new ideas and enhance the community there was an hour of speed dating with the CEO, CSO, COO, Education and Business Directors as well as with the Action Line Leaders.
"As a new partner in EIT ICT Labs, the partner event was a great opportunity to get updated on the new call, to meet the other partners, and to find synergies in the action line workshops. We were welcomed with open arms in the EIT ICT Labs family, and saw a lot of familiar faces we are already working with in the EU ICT community. It was a hectic, but very exiting and fruitful event", says Stefan Van Baelen, iMinds, Belgium.
Lively poster sessions ended the first day before all participants were transported to “Le Musée des Arts et Métiers” for the evening social event. Participants could take a tour of inventions and innovations throughout the ages - the first Lumière camera, the Foucault pendul, the casts for the statue of Liberty and more before enjoying a very Parisian style networking buffet.
On the second day the organization and services of the Business Development Accelerator was shared by Philippe Letellier and Business Director Klaus Beetz. An inspiring point in the agenda was the nomination of three candidates for the EIT Entrepreneurship Award 2013 that will take place in Budapest in November.
Eleven startups from all six nodes of EIT ICT Labs held attractive and crispy pitches. All pitches were well received and the vote was a close cut, but finally three startups Volumental (Stockholm), Quuppa (Helsinki) and CoRehab (Trento) got the majority and will represent EIT ICT Labs at the contest.
" We are very excited that the European ICT community believes in bringing 3D scanning to everyone with Volumental, and that the audience awarded us the top spot in the pitch competition!, says Caroline Walerud, CEO Volumental.
Further inspiration was offered through a visionary speech by François Richard, Director of Partnership and Regulation in Smart Cities of Orange Business Services. After a gastronomic networking lunch buffet, participants were divided into eleven groups and drafted proposals for the activities in next year. The final plenum wrap up was full of enthusiasm by action line leaders and showed the progress made in the workshops for the target and focus on Business Plan 2014.
Willem Jonker stated in the closing remarks that the progress of EIT ICT Labs is ”all about the people” and as we now continue to expand and excel it will be the people involved that will make it happen. The next five weeks will be a busy time with virtual and physical meetings to provide the proposals before the end of May.
The presentations of the Partner event, information about the Call and other useful tools can be found in our intranet (Home > Call 2014 > Partner Event). It is only accessible for partners.