Research and innovation are essential for a successful, modern economy, and they are at the heart of the European Commission's policies to boost jobs, growth and investment. However, while Europe excels in research, we are not good enough at investing in innovation at speed and scale, which is why the EU’s Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, Carlos Moedas, has set the goal of Open Innovation. The basic premise is to open up the innovation process to all active players so that new ideas can circulate more freely and be transformed into products and services that create new markets, fostering a stronger culture of entrepreneurship.
Dr Gabriella Colucci, the founder of two biotechnology companies that discover new plant-based molecules for industrial use, has won the top award of €100,000 in the 2018 EU Prize for Women Innovators, which was presented at a ceremony in Brussels, Belgium on 21 June.
The pioneering solar flight foundation Solar Impulse has launched an ‘Efficient Solution’ label for clean energy start-ups and innovations that can demonstrate their profitability, in a bid to boost investment in the sector.
Artificial intelligence (AI) and cyber security should be priorities in future EU industrial research policy in order to reinvigorate industry and recover jobs that have been lost abroad, according to Professor Jürgen Rüttgers, a former research minister in Germany.
Missions modelled on the 1960s 'moonshot' programme to put a man on the moon by the end of the decade could help make Europe a cool place to do business and unite the public behind European science and innovation, according to Professor Mariana Mazzucato, founder and director of the Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose at University College London, UK, where she holds the chair in the economics of innovation and public value.
The European Union is scaling up its investment in battery technology with the announcement of a €10 million open competition to design a better battery for electric vehicles and a €50 million cash injection to develop Europe's largest green battery factory.
An audit committee that reviews deaths during childbirth and works out how to avoid them has won its founders the €1 million EU Horizon Birth Day prize for a solution that saves the lives of mothers and their babies.
We need a new bill of rights to absorb the changes brought about by the gig economy, or using apps and websites to arrange casual jobs, which are now spreading to other areas of work, according to an international labour expert speaking at a conference on the future of work.
The first full-length mainstream music album co-written with the help of artificial intelligence (AI) was released on 12 January and experts believe that the science behind it could lead to a whole new style of music composition.
Glasses that translate images of physical objects into soundscapes and a belt that turns images into vibrations are helping blind people build up a real-time 3D picture of the world around them, and the technology could hit the market as soon as next year.
Entrepreneurship in Eastern Europe is on the rise, but more better communication about the funding available from the EU would help it to grow further, says Kristina Tsvetanova, the US-based co-founder and CEO of blind-accessible tablet start-up Blitab, and a 2017 winner of the EU Prize for Women Innovators.
Internet of Things and social inclusion enterprises also recognised.
Expert networks have sprung into action to contain the disease.
The European Commission has launched plans for the next research funding programme.