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KET Biotechnology foresight identifying gaps and high-value opportunities for the EU industry
Deadline: Jan 21, 2016  

 Fisheries and Food
 Food Safety
 Forest Resources
 Human Resources
 Health Care
 Sustainable Development
 Water Resource Management
 Horizon Europe

Topic Description
Specific Challenge:

Although Europe enjoys a lead position in science and technology, including biotechnology, in comparison with other world regions European technology base is often scattered and very diverse in terms of regional and national capacities. If Europe is to keep its leadership in Biotechnology, its R&D&I funding agencies, in particular the European Commission, need to stay abreast of progress in the areas they fund to ensure utmost relevance of their activities. In the Biotechnology areas stakeholder roadmaps and scientific publications are often outpaced by rapid progress made in research. The cross-cutting nature of biotechnology also requires targeting the limited funds available in the most efficient way. It is thus essential to forecast the future of R&D&I needs closely, in order to identify major opportunities that are not only readily feasible but also of high value, while achieving a positive public perception of biotechnologies and the potential they hold.


Proposals should use a multidisciplinary approach, including modelling and simulation, to provide comprehensive and dependable information about the future industrial biotechnology scenario (including pharmaceuticals) in the EU in the short and medium-term. Proposals should consider the potential of industrial biotechnology innovation for enabling the European industry to deliver high-value products satisfying evolving consumer needs, the creation of new commercial opportunities and the possible risks for people's health and the environment. European capacities in terms of human resources, infrastructures, research and development and public and private stakeholders should be taken into account. Proposals should also identify links with policy development, and the preparation of the future programmes beyond Horizon 2020. It should be demonstrated that the proposed activities are complementary to related activities under the Societal Challenges 'Health, demographic change and well-being', 'Food security, sustainable agriculture and forestry, marine, maritime and inland water research'; 'Secure, clean and efficient energy'; and the Bio-Based Industries JTI.

Insofar as possible, proposals will address Social Sciences and Humanities (SSH) elements, for example changing consumers' needs and the public perception of biotechnologies for industrial uses.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU between EUR 350000 and 500000 and with a duration of one year would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

No more than one action will be funded.

Expected Impact:
  • A reliable priority-setting scenario for funding industrial biotechnology in the EU in the short to medium-term which is relevant to EU based value chains.
  • An instrument to enhance collaboration between all Member States, building on the strengths of each of the countries and allowing weaknesses to be overcome.
  • A general vision of European industrial biotechnology capacity and needs that will serve to target and strengthen Europe-wide R&D&I cooperation in particular boosting the participation of smaller countries.

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