16 March 2015

Course: International financial instruments for enterprises

Companies and research centres have an increasingly need for resources to enhance their competitiveness and continue to innovate. IGC has studied a path to access the international financial instruments on ongoing basis, to support the company growth at any time.

Calendar 2015
- First session Brussels: April, 21st/22nd/23rd
- Second session Brussels: May 12th/13th/14th

The course will deal with the following issues: 
- Direct European funding for private and public companies as well as research centres;
- Private funding: finding and being financed by Angel business and capital venture;
- European bank loans (EIB, EBRD), international tenders, international awards: how to get grant funding or win a tender or award; 
- International Cooperation, Transactional funds: how to build a network of international partners and/or fit into a European cluster, by protecting your own know-how.

Three days in Brussels! at headquarters of IGC in Brussels Bridge Building, 584 Charles-Quint Avenue, Berchem-Sainte-Agathe - 1082 Brussels
Classes are held from 9.30 to 17.30 and will consist of theoretical and practical parts, workshops and successful case studies.

Course cost: € 655  per participant (VAT excluded).
By participating, you will have:
- 6 months of free consultancy, to assess the feasibility and sustainability of your innovative solutions and your plans.
- A voucher worth € 50 to participate in another course of IGC;  
- Course material, participation certificate, coffee breaks and brunch.
The course will be in English (including the teaching material).

To get the full programme and registration form, please contact:  marketing@igcsas.it
Would you like the course to be held directly at your office? Contact us!

05 February 2015

Fast Track for Innovation

The Fast Track to Innovation (FTI) pilot is testing a new approach to give the development of innovations the last push needed before their introduction to the market. It is the only fully bottom-up measure in Horizon 2020 promoting close-to-market innovation activities and open to all types of participants.

Proposals must relate to any field under the specific objective "Leadership in enabling and industrial technologies" and/or to any of the specific objectives under the priority "Societal challenges".

Consortia must involve participants from industry. A maximum of 5 legal entities can participate in a project. Universities, research and technology organisations and further innovation actors may also participate. Actors that can play a key role in the commercialisation process are encouraged to take part, such as cluster organisations, end-users, industrial associations, incubators, investors, or the public Sector.

04 February 2015


Boosting the potential of small businesses for eco-innovation and a sustainable supply of raw materials
Cut-off dates:

This topic is targeted at all types of eco-innovative SMEs in all areas addressing the climate action, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials challenge, focusing on SMEs showing a strong ambition to develop, grow and internationalise. All kinds of promising ideas, products, processes, services and business models, notably across sectors and disciplines, for commercialisation both in a business-to-business (B2B) and a business-to-customer (B2C) context, are eligible.

The SME instrument consists of three separate phases and a coaching and mentoring service for beneficiaries. Participants can apply to phase 1 with a view to applying to phase 2 at a later date, or directly to phase 2.

17 February 2014


Hybrid light and heavy duty vehicles
Deadline: 28th august 2014

Specific challenge: The competitiveness of European road vehicle manufacturers is based on technological leadership particularly on system optimisation and affordability, particularly with respect to powertrains. The challenge is to recover a leading position in hybrid technology. The technology will also have positive effect on the reduction of CO2 emissions from road transport and air quality.

Scope: Proposals should develop new knowledge on hybrid components (storage system power electronics, etc.) and system engineering, simulation and technology integration with the aim of achieving hybrid powertrain weight and cost reduction, increased functionality, simplification of complex systems, efficiency and affordability while decreasing emissions and improving performance, comfort and functional safety. For light vehicles, preference would be given to concepts providing significant zero emission ranges. The research should be validated through at least one demonstrator for each platform subject of research.

Project Budget: between EUR 10 to 20 million each

Funding rate: 70% (except for non-profit legal entities, where a rate of 100% applies)

Source: European Commission official website

14 February 2014


Future natural gas powertrains and components for cars and vans
Deadline: 28 August 2014

The challenge is to reach the fleet level of 95g CO2/km and 147g CO2/km emissions targets for passenger cars and light duty commercial vehicles respectively (according to the new Worldwide harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure), through the development of advanced engine and after-treatment concepts adapted and optimised to use natural gas. Significant reductions in terms of real driving emissions of NOx and PM are also expected.

The technology needs to be competitive with respect to current vehicles using conventional fuels. Therefore the challenge can only be reached if vehicles demonstrate a driving range of at least 600 km with no space penalty in comparison to gasoline vehicles.

Scope: Proposals should focus on any combination of combustion process optimisation, variable compression, control systems, dual fuel operation, optimised fuel injection, adaptive systems and sensors to cope with different qualities and blends, after-treatment systems, advanced fuel tanks, ancillaries and overall powertrain optimisation.

Project Budget: between EUR 10 to 20 million each

Funding rate: 70% (except for non-profit legal entities, where a rate of 100% applies)
Source: European Commission official website

12 February 2014


Reducing impacts and costs of freight and service trips in urban areas
Deadline: 18th march 2014

Proposals should address one or several of the following aspects:
• Improving basic knowledge and understanding on freight distribution and service trips in urban areas. This could address research on indicators, measurement and data (e.g. delivery/service characteristics, operators, movements, and impacts); economic and behavioural modelling; impacts of urban planning; effects of logistics sprawl (e.g. impact of decentralisation of logistics facilities on transport movements); freight mitigation strategies; effectiveness of partnerships and stakeholder engagement; and comparative analyses and evaluation of policies and experiments.
• Assessing innovative policies and solutions to ensure a better use of infrastructure (e.g. delivery spaces, off peak deliveries, non-road modes, urban waterways) and vehicles (types, load factors); improve network management; address demand side measures, innovative use of transport modes, new ways of stakeholder collaboration; and provide policy frameworks that allow sustainable business models for urban logistics solutions.
• Assessing innovative policies and solutions on consolidation and distribution centres in urban areas, including design (e.g. cross-docking); business models for consolidation schemes (including fleet and freight sharing and pooling and adequate collaboration frameworks); integration of direct and reverse logistics; tools to identify and measure consolidation opportunities; and governance models.

Project Budget: between EUR 2 to 4 million each

Funding rate: 100%

Source: European Commission official website

10 February 2014


Transforming the use of conventionally fuelled vehicles in urban areas
Deadline: 18th March 2014

Proposals should address one of the following domains:
funds for research• Comparing innovative policies, measures and tools that will, inter alia, halve the use of conventionally fuelled vehicles in cities, while increasing accessibility of urban areas and improve air quality and road safety. This could include:
– Assessing the role of regulatory measures, demand side measures, innovative mobility services and the promotion of alternative modes as part of wider package of technologies, policy-based and soft measures with a strong potential for replication. The related consensus building, information and communication activities should be fully integrated in the work.
– Exploring how changes in mobility behaviour, individual choices, and social norms can be catalysed, accelerated and guided towards modal shift, changing vehicle use or ownership, reducing the need for travel, new mobility patterns, or their combination. Relevant drivers and barriers could be identified. The research should gather, evaluate and disseminate techniques that can be employed, including approaches that use social media.
• Exploring policy frameworks and measures to ensure the uptake of alternative fuelled vehicle fleets in urban areas. This could include:
– Assessing the opportunities for large scale deployment of alternative fuel distribution infrastructure, including for electric vehicle recharging. This could include a comparative assessment of deployment approaches combined with the adequate vehicles. Research on partnerships, business models and planning/rollout approaches could be undertaken and standardisation aspects could form part of the work. Pre-commercial procurement initiatives could be facilitated.
– Analysing the potentials for upgrading and/or regenerating electric public transport systems (i.e. trolleybus, tram, light rail and metro) while ensuring the safe integration of electric vehicles into infrastructure, in line with the trend towards electromobility. This could include the evaluation of costs and benefits of development schemes, also addressing noise aspects, as well as knowledge transfer, exchange of experience and preparing policy recommendations. Activities to improve the operational potential and energy performance of electric public transport may be included.

Project Budget: between EUR 4 to 6 million each

Funding rate: 100%

Source: European Commission official website

For further information please contact us

07 February 2014

European funding for innovation

Towards the energy efficient and emission free vessel
Deadline: 18th March 2014 (for pre-proposals)

The challenge is to support developments that make new and existing vessels used in maritime operations (including leisure) and in inland navigation significantly more efficient and less polluting through solutions addressing four ship sub-systems: engine, pollution abatement systems, propulsion, energy sources and management including the efficient operation of on-board systems

: In order to meet this challenge, proposals should address one or several of the following aspects:
• Optimisation of conventional ship engines, including fuel flexibility, new materials, lifetime performance and near zero emissions engines.
• Development of low-maintenance, affordable off-the-shelf retrofit solutions for emission reductions of existing engines.
• Development of Liquified Natural Gas/dual fuel powered engines for small and mid-size ships, including the specific aspects of retrofitting, fuel supply and storage, safety (on-board and on-shore) and classification, and solutions to address the risks of methane slip.
• Design and demonstration of new and improved propulsion means and vessel configurations that include the entire drive train and the propeller and hull optimisation for vessels, including applied research in Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD).
• Use of new energy sources including renewables, alternative fuels, hybrid and electric solutions with the aim to demonstrate the feasibility of the zero or near-zero emissions vessel.

Project Budget: between EUR 8 to 17 million each

Funding rate: 70% (except for non-profit legal entities, where a rate of 100% applies)

Source: European Commission official website

05 February 2014


Smart Rail Services
Deadline: 18th March 2014 (pre-proposals)

Proposals should address one of the two main challenges:

1) Seamless multimodal travel
2) Logistic Services
Regarding Seamless multimodal travel, research and innovation activities should aim at conceiving and prototyping an on-line, mobile, suite of integrated facilities providing a whole new traveller experience throughout the journey (namely planning and reservation of user-friendly multimodal trips and services, including information related to the specific needs of persons with reduced mobility and to the environmental impact of user choices), easily accessible entitlements, validation and control for all transport modes, en-route assistance including re-accommodation. The whole process should be further supported by the necessary business analytics providing relevant feedback of traveller data with the aim of ensuring more robust and responsive transport operations. Developments should evolve on the basis of robust business models capable of guaranteeing the economics of these e-services in the long-term.

Regarding Logistic Services, proposals should aim at addressing the key challenges of freight through a systematic "top-down" approach that backtracks from the performance indicators to be achieved – either in a geographical reach perspective (i.e. applicability of the solutions on a European scale) or in market segmentation (e.g. trainload/intermodal/wagonload or commodity-based segments) - and define the optimal combination of business, operational and technological solutions that are required for their delivery. In view of the significant financial fragility of the sector, priority should be given to those aspects that maximise potential returns in the short-term and require only moderate investment.

Project Budget: around EUR 12 million for the first challenge (Seamless multimodal travel) and around EUR 6 million euro for the second challenge (Logistic services)

Funding rate: 100%

Source: European Commission official website

03 February 2014


Competitiveness of European Aviation through cost efficiency and innovation
Deadline: 18th March 2014 (for pre-proposals)

Regarding aircraft, research and innovation actions could target the development of technologies and methodologies which have the potential to save costs and time across the whole life cycle of the aircraft (design, production, maintenance, overhaul, repair and retrofit), including for certification aspects. Research and innovation actions could also target the integration of additional functions (e.g. sensing, actuating) or materials in structural components of the aircraft, the increased use of automation and artificial intelligence in control systems allowing versatility and new capabilities or to provide passenger with additional services on-board of the aircraft or at the airport.

Regarding air transport operations, research and innovation actions could target cost efficiency of ground operations, as well as innovative approaches which can reduce the needs or accelerate the pace of the training of personnel.