European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT)
The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) was created in 2008 as a new initiative to boost European competitiveness and innovation and to promote sustainable growth in the European economic area. In line with the current Europe 2020 strategy, the EIT is designed to strengthen the overall European innovation policy.
By establishing long-term international links between higher education institutions, research organisations, industry and SMEs, the EIT connects the central actors of the knowledge triangle and existing European funding structures, complementary to other existing European funding structures.
Rather than being a conventional research institute, the EIT itself acts as an administrative structure which employs the so-called Knowledge and Innovation Community’s (KICs) as operational tools. A KIC is a highly integrated public-private partnership that brings together outstanding businesses, universities and research institutes in innovation hubs, the so-called "Co-location Centres".
The EIT headquarter is located in Budapest, as is the Governing Board, the EIT’s central decision-making body. Current Director of the EIT is Martin Kern. Gioia Ghezzi started leading the EIT Governing Board as chairman in July 2020.
Since 2009, eight KICs have been selected via the EIT:
EIT in Horizon 2020
A budget of EUR 2,4 bn (EFSI cuts included) has been reserved in Horizon 2020 for the EIT. The Horizon 2020 negotiations ended with an agreement for the funding of five new KICs by 2020.