воскресенье, 28 февраля 2016 г.

Technology Readiness Level (TRL) put into practice

Serkan Bolat
Originated by NASA in 1970s, Technology Readiness Level (TRL) is a 1-to-9 measurement scale used to describe the maturity of new technologies under development. It helps monitor and adapt their progress route towards larger system integration and/or market launch. This enables a better execution in terms of project performance, schedule and budget. The scale is appreciated for its ability to improve risk management, resource allocation, and project coordination. Therefore, TRLs and TRL-inspired readiness scales are increasingly utilized by engineers, scientists, innovators, investors, granters, purchasers, international organizations, and governments in many countries.
TRLs show how close you are to shipping your product. They let you track your project in a spectrum between an idea on a scratch paper and a usable product in the industry. Also, if you are an individual without any interest in commercialization, you can generally refer to TRLs to underline your research focus, for instance, TRL 1-3 might mean you are a theoretician dealing with abstract concepts.
On the other hand, TRLs are not intended to order or compare technologies based on their complexity, likeability, or innovativeness. So, higher TRLs do not necessarily indicate more advanced or impactful technologies. Though you can customize or extend your TRL metrics to cover these and other dimensions of your choice as in this example. TRLs can also be used for non-technological innovations as foreseen by Horizon 2020, the current EU research and innovation framework program. Below left is Annex G of its 2016-17 Work Program, which is the official reference within Horizon 2020. Below right is a slide from an EC presentation, which helps understand the definitions. (You can click and view their bigger versions in a new tab/window.)

A tool for disciplined innovation

Just as all the other business methodologies and models, TRL framework requires a certain mindset and it works under certain conditions and limitations. First of all, you should be replying ‘yes’ to below questions to simply confirm that exercising TRLs is right for your innovation project:
  • Are you dealing with new technology, product, or service research and development?
  • Does your development involve major risks, unknowns, probabilities, and dilemmas?
Having passed this, it is worth to check how your work culture resonates with those of the organizations who are able to benefit from TRL practice the most. Aligned with design thinkinglean startupagile development, and open innovation, their empowering beliefs and principles can be summarized as follows:
  • To embrace systematic entrepreneurship, evidence-based decision-making, and scientific approach to business development.
  • To believe that innovation cannot be planned or executed at once and entirely in advance so a development process, either technological or non-technological, should be phased.
  • To organize interdisciplinary and cross-functional teams. To integrate research, development, and commercialization efforts rather than isolating them in sequential steps.
  • To design basic scientific research with the potential end product ideas in mind and vice versa.
  • To extend development concerns from discrete product features to overall value offering and to business model.
If above mentality does not sound meaningful to you, TRLs may turn into just an empty formality and a burden distracting you with its paperwork. Below is an excerpt from Steve Blank’s speech at the Lean Startup Conference in 2013. He summarizes TRLs and introduces his Investment Readiness Levels (IRLs).

6 steps to TRL assessment

Technology readiness assessment has two major concerns: TRL measurementand technology maturation planning. The former focuses on accurate determination of TRLs whereas the latter concentrates on how to advance the project from one TRL to the next. This can be best achieved if the assessment starts as early as possible and be iteratively performed throughout the project. Being discipline- and industry-independent, TRL framework does not strictly reinforce certain scientific methodologies, experiments, statistical analysis, or commercialization planning. Organizations are both free and responsible to design their novel research, development, and launch program. As a roadmap, the framework helps understand, design, and follow this process. Below is a summary of the methodology. A few key definitions will be followed by the necessary action steps.
Critical Technology Element (CTE) is a component that is vital to the system to meet operational requirements, cost, and schedule AND is novel or, at least, new indicating a major risk during design or demonstration.
Relevant environment simulates the technologically stressing aspects of the operational environment.
Operational environment addresses all the operational requirements and specifications required of the final system to include platform/packaging.
1. Set your project objective What is your target TRL 9 technology? Which customer segments or what tech specifications should it satisfy?
2. Customize the TRL definitions What are the CTEs and characteristics of the relevant and operational environments (i.e., physical, data, ecosystem, and user experience)?
3. Specify success criteria for TRLs What performance levels should be achieved on which metrics in relation to CTEs? What are the major issues (i.e., constraints, interoperability)?
4. Describe the roles Who will participate in assessment at each TRL (i.e., developer, marketer, technology expert, independent reviewer)?
5. Schedule and execute the measurement What evidence (i.e., data, variables) should be studied and how (i.e., experiment, simulation, pilot test, desk research)?
6. Report and advise Is a TRL exited? What further development work is needed to achieve higher TRLs? What difficulties and risks are predicted with regard to this progress?
Apparently, there is no one-size-fits-all assessment process. You can craft your unique assessment procedure in collaboration with your stakeholders. Here are some reference documents where you can find inspiration: NASA TRL definitionsISO standard for TRLs,Guidelines for the use of TRLs in ESA programmes. It is common that organizations who utilize TRLs frequently and preciously develop TRL calculators in Excel spreadsheets to easily measure, record, and monitor their TRL progress.

10 Frequently Asked Questions on assessment

Innovators especially those utilizing TRLs for the first time experience some confusion on how to best benefit from TRL scale. Here are 10 tips to avoid from misunderstandings.
Is there any authoritative body that measures, approves, or certifies TRLs?
No, there is not an official certification or approval process for TRLs. You are responsible to plan and execute your own assessment. Though there are some official guidelines or recommendations offered by certain institutions that may help maintain more robust and persuasive TRL framework. If you have commitments to these institutions through a procurement or grant project, you are already required to follow them thoroughly.
What if the relevant parties cannot agree on the TRL of our technology?
You’d better first agree on your TRL criteria, evidence, and measurement procedure. This would be a life-saver if the technology is complex, project duration is long, and there are many participants involved. In general, TRL 1-5 measurement is leaded by technology experts. After TRL 5, customer perspective is the determining factor to assign a TRL.
My technology passed TRL 5 and is now being tested against TRL 6. Can I call it TRL 6?No. In order to report TRL 6, you should be conclusively done with TRL 6 activities. By the way, your development work can start at TRL 5, which means you are not the originator of all the technologies and concepts enabling your innovation. However, your TRL measurement still needs to start from TRL 1 to simply confirm that your organization has successfully analyzed and incorporated the necessary base knowledge and technologies in the project.
Do I have to complete a particular TRL work within a certain period of time?
No. This is not a linear process where the necessary work and achievement criteria are the same for all TRLs. It may take several years to pass a level and just days to pass another.
Can I measure and claim a TRL on paper or should I actually do a demo?
The higher TRL, the more real-life demonstration. TRL progress can start with basic research and scientific experimentation that may heavily rely on desk research, simulation, or lab work. As TRLs are passed through, more ‘outside the building’ activity should be incorporated ending up with a well-functioning product or service in the market.
What TRL should I report if my project relies on several technologies at different TRLs?
In general, you should report a single TRL for the outcome of your entire project rather than separate TRLs for each sub-component since they are not aimed to function discretely. As a rule of thumb, when there are many sub-components involved in a project, project TRL is the lowest of all. However, if you have a multi-purpose project with several genuinely different outcomes with their unique evolution path, you may declare more than one TRL.
My innovation aims to integrate several known mature technologies. Can I skip early TRL validations and directly start from, for instance, TRL 6 activities?
No. Even if you do not foresee any integration or interoperability issues theoretically, you should still verify your assumptions and hypothesis. Though this could be fast and easy since certain discoveries are already made. Remember that TRL assessment indicates your original IP. If you find there is nothing critical to validate or demonstrate, this may mean that your innovation does not have an added-value.
My research successfully ended up at TRL 6 several years ago. Now, assuming its previous TRL still valid, can I start where I left earlier?
No. Many parameters may have changed over time, particularly, market demand, state-of-the-art, industrial standards, and legal regulations. Basically, you need to confirm that what brought you success in the past will still make sense in the future.
My TRL 7 technology was supposed to be included in a specific larger technology system. What about its TRL, if I try to adapt it into another technology system?
If those two larger systems are genuinely distinct with their own characteristics, you should follow through relevant readiness assessment for the new target technology system, too. One should remember that a technology is unlikely to have an intrinsic value of its own in today’s marketplace where products function together and rely on one another to deliver their intended value. For example, despite being based on the same core TRL 1-4 technology, two different use cases of the final technology may require different TRL 5-9 paths.
If TRL 6 requires a working technology, what is the difference between TRL 6 and 9?TRL 6 requires a prototype (or the kind of proof-of-concept commonly practiced in your field) showing that your offering is able to address a customer challenge. However, TRL 9 means that you put a product on the shelf for sale with all the right packaging, pricing, user manual, distribution network, complementary services, and technical support.

пятница, 26 февраля 2016 г.

Horizon 2020 – And we’re off – Work Programme 2018/19 planning starts!

Although the deadlines for the 2016/17 calls are in their infancy, there is no rest for those developing priorities for the next Work Programme. Discussions are starting to pick up pace about what should be included in the 2018 and 2019 calls for proposals and also thoughts about what the final year of Horizon 2020 (and life beyond) may hold.
How does the priority setting process work?
Based on previous approaches, the formal process of setting priorities will take up to two years and involve a range of inputs from different stakeholders, with consultations being launched during the first half of 2016 (Ed – see below for a handful published to date, and keep an eye on the Blog for more as they are launched). In parallel, and drawing on the information gathered from consultation with stakeholders, Expert Advisory Groups for each of the areas of Horizon 2020 will start to identify draft priorities.
Draft Work Programmes are likely to take shape early in 2017, with discussions in Programme Committees (delegates and experts from national governments) being followed by consultation between different Directorates-General. The final versions of the 2017 Work Programme will be published in the last quarter of 2017.
(Ed – UKRO have prepared a really digestible guide to how the system works here – you’ll need to login to access the information)
What can I do?
If you have ideas about priorities (and the ways in which these could be addressed), you should take the opportunity to feed into the ongoing consultations and make links with the National Contact Points, who will have a role in presenting ideas for consideration. We can help you with this.
Open Horizon 2020 Consultations

среда, 24 февраля 2016 г.

H2020 #SMEinstrument newsletter n°5 is out!


Pieejams finansējums projektu īstenošanai Igaunijas-Latvijas programmas ietvaros

Enterprise Europe Network Latvia

Igaunijas-Latvijas pārrobežu sadarbības programma 2014.-2020.gadam (Igaunijas – Latvijas programma) izsludina projektu konkursu un aicina iesniegt sadarbības projektu idejas pārrobežu uzņēmējdarbības veicināšanai, tūrisma attīstībai, vides aizsardzībai un darbaspēka kustības atvieglošanai. Pirmajā konkursā projektu īstenošanai ir plānots piešķirt aptuveni 18 milj. eiro, no kuriem aptuveni 8 milj. eiro tiks novirzīti ar atbalstu uzņēmējdarbībai saistītiem projektiem.
Finansējumam var pieteikties nacionālā, reģionālā un vietējā līmeņa iestādes, to izveidotās institūcijas, pašvaldību un valsts kapitālsabiedrības, plānošanas reģioni, kā arī zinātnes un izglītības iestādes, biedrības un nodibinājumi un privāti uzņēmumi no Kurzemes, Pierīgas, Rīgas un Vidzemes. Projektu idejas ir jāsagatavo, sadarbojoties partneriem no Igaunijas un Latvijas, un jāiesniedz Apvienotajā sekretariātā līdz 2016. gada 22. aprīlim. Apvienotā sekretariāta komanda laipni aicina visus interesentus konsultēties par atbalstāmām aktivitātēm un finansējuma piešķiršanas nosacījumiem. Plašāku un detalizētāku informāciju var iegūt programmas mājaslapā.
Lai labāk izprastu jaunos atbalsta virzienus un nosacījumus, kā arī, lai satiktu potenciālos sadarbības partnerus un saņemtu konsultācijas, visi interesenti 31. martā tiek aicināti uz informatīvu pasākumu „Saldējuma galvaspilsētā” Rūjienā. Informācija par pasākumu tiks publicēta programmas mājaslapā un Facebook lapā Estonia-Latvia Programme.
Igaunijas-Latvijas programma ir viena no 60 pārrobežu sadarbības programmām, kuras ievieš Eiropas Savienības iekšējām robežām pieguļošos reģionos. Programmas ieviešanu vada Igaunijas Finanšu ministrija, kura vienlaikus pilda arī nacionālās atbildīgās iestādes funkcijas. Latvijā nacionālās atbildīgās iestādes funkcijas veic Vides aizsardzības un reģionālās attīstības ministrija. Programmu finansē Eiropas Reģionālās attīstības fonds, un kopējais atbalsts programmai ir 38 miljoni eiro. Igaunijas-Latvijas programma ir turpinājums 2007. - 2013. gadu periodā īstenotajai pārrobežu programmai.

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Jaunie Rīgas uzņēmēji šogad grantu programmā “Atspēriens” varēs saņemt līdz 15 000 eiro savas biznesa idejas attīstībai

Jaunie Rīgas uzņēmēji šogad grantu programmā “Atspēriens” varēs saņemt līdz 15 000 eiro savas biznesa idejas attīstībai
Rīgas domes priekšsēdētājs Nils Ušakovs un „Swedbank” valdes priekšsēdētājs Māris Mančinskis ceturtdien parakstīja vienošanos par grantu programmas „Atspēriens” īstenošanu 2016.gadā, jau astoto gadu pēc kārtas turpinot veicināt mazo un vidējo uzņēmumu attīstību Rīgā.
Kopējais grantu programmas apjoms pirmajam pusgadam paredzēts vairāk nekā 95 000 eiro, un vienas biznesa idejas atbalstam būs iespēja saņemt līdz pat 15 000 eiro. Jaunie uzņēmēji aicināti iesniegt savas idejas grantu programmai līdz šā gada 21.martam. Šogad konkursā īpaša uzmanība tiks pievērsta inovatīvām biznesa idejām. 
„Atspēriens” ar “Swedbank”  palīdzību ir kļuvis par populāru mazās un vidējās  uzņēmējdarbības atbalsta veidu Rīgā. Jau šogad mēģināsim šo atbalsta veidu padarīt vēl efektīvāku, lai tas jaunajiem uzņēmējiem būtu pieejamāks un izdevīgāks. Aicinām ikvienu jauno uzņēmēju, kuram ir inovatīvas un labas idejas, izmantot šo iespēju un pieteikties konkursā”, uzsvēra Rīgas domes priekšsēdētājs Nils Ušakovs.
“Jau astoto gadu kopā ar Rīgas domi atbalstām jaunos uzņēmējus un aicinām būt drosmīgiem un uzņēmīgiem, piesakot savu biznesa ideju grantu programmā “Atspēriens”. Šogad jo īpaši ceram sagaidīt novatoriskas idejas, kuru īstenošanai piešķirt finansiālu atspērienu. Mēdz sacīt, ka panākumus nosaka ieguldītais darbs, savukārt darbs prasa disciplīnu. Tāpēc jaunajiem censoņiem ceļā uz panākumiem – gan konkursā, gan idejas realizēšanā – novēlu būt disciplinētiem un mērķtiecīgiem. Atbalsts vienmēr dodas drosmes un uzņēmības virzienā,” norādīja “Swedbank” valdes priekšsēdētājs Māris Mančinskis.
Uzņēmēji aicināti iesniegt pieteikumus grantu programmai līdz šā gada 21.martam plkst.12, Rīgas domes Pilsētas attīstības departamentā, Amatu ielā 4, LV-1050, 308.kabinetā. Informācija par grantu programmu un ar to saistītajām aktivitātēm (semināriem u.c.) pieejama: www.atsperiens.lv, kur sadaļā „saistītie dokumenti” iespējams lejupielādēt konkursa nolikumu un pieteikuma veidlapas.
Grantu programmai, atbilstoši nolikumam, var pieteikties privātpersonas vai komersanti, kas reģistrēti Rīgā ne ilgāk nekā divus pilnus gadus. Grantu programmas  pieteikumus vērtē atbilstoši iepriekš izstrādātiem kritērijiem – galvenokārt pēc biznesa idejas ilgtermiņa, dzīvotspējas un oriģinalitātes. Šajā konkursā pastiprināta uzmanība tiks pievērsta tieši inovatīvajām idejām, kas var izpausties dažādos veidos. Kā prioritārie “Atspēriens” virzieni noteikti transports un uzglabāšana, tūrisms un ar to saistītās nozares, ražošana (jo īpaši: datoru, elektronisko un optisko iekārtu ražošana, metālizstrādājumu ražošana, koksnes, koka un korķa izstrādājumu ražošana, pārtikas produktu un dzērienu ražošana), informācijas un komunikācijas tehnoloģijas un būvniecība.
Uzņēmēji, kuru sagatavotie pieteikumi iegūs augstāko novērtējumu, saņems piedāvājumu slēgt līgumu par līdzfinansējuma piešķiršanu. Grantu programma (līdz 80% apmērā) atbalsta jauno komersantu izdevumus, kas saistīti ar specifiskas tehnikas un licenču iegādi, grāmatvedības vai juridisko pakalpojumu apmaksu, interneta mājas lapas izstrādi, darbinieku apmācību, mārketinga materiālu izveidi, telpu īri un labiekārtošanas izmaksām u.tml. Vienam uzņēmumam pieejamā granta maksimālais apjoms ir 15 000 eiro.
“Par grantu konkursu “Atspēriens” uzzinājām jau mūsu ražojošā uzņēmuma “Certes Technologies” attīstības sākumā. Divreiz sagatavojām pieteikumu, taču to neiesniedzām, jo paši apzinājāmies, ka vēl neesam izplānojuši pareizāko finansējuma izlietojumu veiksmes gadījumā. Tāpēc pieteikumu grantu programmai iesniedzām tikai trešajā reizē, kad mūsu ideja no “zaļa” stāvokļa jau bija sākusi realizēties, kā arī bija skaidri izkristalizējies granta izlietojuma mērķis. Iegūtie līdzekļi mums palīdzēja sertificēt Certes PentaClass Runa audio sistēmu lielākajam mērķa tirgum - ASV, paplašināt ražošanu, kā arī izstrādāt mārketinga materiālus. Jāatzīst, ka no “Atspēriena” saņemtais atbalsts ir nesis ļoti lielu gandarījumu, jo īpaši tādēļ, ka to izmantojām vissmagākajā fāzē pirms izaugsmes, un tagad esam gatavi straujai attīstībai,” stāsta grantu programmas laureāts, “Certes Technologies” uzņēmuma valdes loceklis Agnis Kalniņš.
Šogad “Atspēriens” noritēs jau piecpadsmito reizi. No 2009.gada grantu programmas laikā atbalstītas 126 uzņēmējdarbības idejas, piešķirot kopējo līdzfinansējumu gandrīz 1 000 000 eiro apmērā. Šogad grantu programma turpinās piedāvāt ne tikai finansiālu atbalstu konkursa uzvarētājiem, bet arī jaunas zināšanas, organizējot bezmaksas seminārus par uzņēmējdarbībā svarīgām tēmām, kas būtiskas ikvienas labas idejas īstenošanai.

FOTO: Rīgas domes priekšsēdētājs Nils Ušakovs un „Swedbank” valdes priekšsēdētājs Māris Mančinskis paraksta vienošanos par grantu programmas „Atspēriens” īstenošanu 2016.gadā

Grantu programmas „Atspēriens” aktualitātēm iespējams sekot līdzi arī sociālajā vietnē Twitter – (@Atsperiens) un Facebook.

Papildu informācijai:
Mārtiņš Lācis,
Rīgas domes Pilsētas attīstības departamenta Projektu vadības pārvaldes Investīciju nodaļas galvenais projektu vadītājs
Tālr. 67012874
E-pasts: martins.lacis@riga.lv
 Elīna Zvirbule,
„Swedbank” AS
Uzņēmējdarbības kompetences centra eksperte
Tālr.: 67444435
E-pasts: elina.zvirbule@swedbank.lv


понедельник, 22 февраля 2016 г.

Work begins on the next EU research programme

European Commission is to launch a public consultation on the successor to Horizon 2020 in the autumn, Robert-Jan Smits, director-general for research and innovation, tells the Science|Business annual conference. This will be the EU’s ninth R&D programme

Officials in the European Commission are preparing the ninth research and innovation programme and a preliminary proposal, “will be on the table by the end of 2017, beginning of 2018” as part of the Commission's long-term budget planning, said Robert-Jan Smits, Director-General for Research and Innovation, speaking at the Science|Business Horizon 2020 conference this week.
“We are launching a foresight exercise to [establish] the big societal challenges we should focus on. We have commissioned a couple of think tanks to help us and we’re already seeing topics emerge [which are] not in Horizon 2020,” Smits said.  
Smits noted this new approach to preparing a research programme was suggested by the eminent Belgian microbiologist Peter Piot, co-discoverer of the Ebola virus.
The initial study is a prelude to the public consultation, which will seek input from academics and industry on the research the EU should fund in the long term. The Commission’s calendar sets 2017-18 for a rethink of its budgetary planning  – the so-called Multiannual Financial Framework, of which Horizon 2020 is a part. That planning is expected to contain the orientations and budget for Framework Programme 9, Commission officials said after the conference.
A daunting thing
Horizon 2020 continues to be inundated with grant applications, with 90,641 received in a little over two years. This is “a daunting thing” and means the success rate is stuck between 12 and 14 per cent. “I’m afraid it could remain around that level,” Smits said.
While not optimistic of success, Smits has asked for more money in advance of an EU spending review. “Did I put in a claim for more money? Absolutely. Am I going to get it? I think it will be difficult,” he said.
In lieu of a bigger budget, some of the programme rules are being amended. “We’re enlarging two-stage procedures across the board,” said Smits. As a rule of thumb, 80 per cent of proposals, which are not good enough to make the cut, should be rejected in a short-form, stage one evaluation. In stage two, where a longer application is required, at least 35 per cent of proposals should have a chance of success.
Smits reiterated that competitions will not become more rigid, which would have a natural effect of discouraging some applicants. “In [Framework Programme 7], we had very narrowly defined topics, he said, noting that in Horizon 2020, “We went away from a very prescriptive approach.”
There is a reluctance to adopt the European Research Council method, where applicants who score below a certain threshold cannot apply again for two years.  That is, “Easy to do for an individual grantee, but you can’t do it with a consortium,” Smits said.
Applicants must to be selective. The inclination to send a proposal to Brussels might occur suddenly, “If it’s Sunday, it’s raining outside and the kids are screaming.” But, Smits advised researchers, “think twice about it”. 
Evaluating the evaluators
Despite Smits’ soothing words, there is discontent amongst scientists about the Horizon 2020 evaluation procedure.
“Many say evaluation results are less predictable than before,” said Fabrizio Gagliardi, chair of the Association of Computing Machinery.
Typically applications are scored by three evaluators working in isolation of one another. If opinion is split on a proposal, the scores of the three evaluators diverge, and it is not clear to applicants how the final decision gets made. Several delegates at the conference asked for a return to the old days, when reviewers held consensus meetings to challenge each other’s scoring. This feature wasn’t included in Horizon 2020 because it slows down time to grant.
Massimo Busuoli, head of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology’s Brussels office, said divergence among reviewer scores was confusing for applicants. Sometimes only one out of the three evaluators will score a proposal down, but will carry the day even if the other two reviewers were positive. “In many cases, the opinion of one expert can change the other two opinions. The process should be more transparent,” Busuoli said.
Caroline Bergaud, managing partner of Bergaud & Partners, and an evaluator for some past SME Instrument and Fast Track competitions, said that to some extent evaluation results are a lottery. “It is related to the fact that we can’t attract enough talent from companies. Evaluating the evaluators would be a good idea,” she said.
Scientists also complained about meagre feedback from evaluators, another time-saving element, which can leave failed applicants in the dark.
“Ensuring quality is a huge challenge for us,” Smits conceded. But he flatly disagreed with Bergaud’s comment that some evaluation processes turned on chance. “Nobody involved would call it a lottery; we always go for quality,” he said.
To become an evaluator, scientists and industry representative are invited to register themselves to an online database of experts. Evaluators are then chosen using a keyword search. 
In the past experts were hand-picked, Smits noted. “I’ve also come across people when I was involved in evaluations who call themselves experts but are not really. I once had an evaluator who said he was fluent in English. The person did not speak a word of English and then you’re stuck with them for a week.”
Another problem is the preponderance of scientists among evaluators. It is difficult for the Commission to recruit evaluators from the private sector. “Academics [can be] free for two or three weeks,” Smits said. But experts from private sector “usually cancel at the last minute” for reasons related to workload or because the incentive to be an EU grant evaluator is not that strong.
Make Room for a European Innovation Council
The midpoint review of Horizon 2020, scheduled for later this year, is a time to consider shifting some furniture – although Smits advised against changing too much.
In terms of the timetable for the new European Innovation Council (EIC), which EU Research Commissioner Carlos Moedas is keen to progress quickly, Smits said, “I think we have to first see the results of the EIC consultation,” expected in May.
“We have enough flexibility inside the last three years to shift things; to change things in work programme 2018, 2019 and 2020, if we consider it necessary to shape the EIC,” said Smits.
However, he added, “I would be very hesitant to break open the legislative procedure for Horizon 2020.” Revising Horizon 2020 would require approval from the European Parliament. “This can take up to two years,” Smits noted. “There’s so many different interests in the Parliament. For Horizon 2020 for example, we received over 2,000 amendments. It was very delicate.”