Brussels, 07 Apr 2005
Members of the European Parliament's committee on industry, research and energy (ITRE) have welcomed the positive contribution made by Eureka to Europe's research environment.
Eureka focuses on market-oriented research and development (R&D), bringing together participants from small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs), large companies and universities in Europe. Since 1985, it has supported more than 2,600 projects with a value of more than 22 billion euro.
Parliament's report on the future of EU research policy, drawn up by Italian MEP Pia Locatelli and adopted in February, included amendments highlighting Eureka as an example of effective public-private partnership, research clustering and a model for providing opportunities for SMEs to benefit from technology transfer.
The Eureka presentation to the ITRE Committee on 30 March was hosted by Irish MEP Avril Doyle, who highlighted the fact that 400,000 EU-trained scientists and researchers are currently working in the US. 'We need Eureka to keep scientists in Europe,' Ms Doyle argued.
Italian member Vittorio Prodi, meanwhile, praised the success of Eureka, and called for the initiative to become 'a real technology platform', adopting a bottom-up approach encompassing enterprises, universities and research centres.
Other interventions contrasted the high success rate of Eureka projects with those carried out under the EU's Research Framework Programmes, and called for further learning and sharing experiences between the two programmes.
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