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June European Council Summit outcomes: EIT launched

The recent European Council Summit on 21-22 June in Brussels was dominated by Polish pleas and constitutional treaty bargaining. After some fussing from Poland, the future system of voting within the institutions was eventually agreed upon, as well as major institutional reforms to be included in the ‘simplified’ treaty. Other policy areas of the German Presidency were addressed as well. Though education was a muted topic in the Germany presidency conclusions (the German presidency has now finished), research and innovation priorities were articulated. They included the following:

  • a swift agreement on the first four proposals for Joint Technology Initiatives (ARTEMIS on embedded computer systems, the Innovative Medicine Initiative, Clean Sky on Aeronautics and air transport, and ENIAC on nano-electric technologies) and the incorporation of other such proposals into the 7th Framework Programme;
  • production of a European Regulation for the European Institute of Technology (EIT)- a final decision on the EIT by the Council and the Parliament is urged by the end of the year;
  • an initiative for a European Charter for the use of intellectual property from public research institutions and universities. This would improve the transfer of knowledge between industry and research and strengthen the European Research Area. 

Following the Summit, European research ministers swiftly agreed to finally launch the EIT, a decision that came at the European Competitiveness Council on Monday 25 June. Though financing of the EIT has been controversial, ministers have committed to 309 million Euro, to be contributed from the budget of the Commission. With regard to structure, the Ministers decided on two to three Knowledge Innovation Communities (KIC's) (See ACA Newsletter-Education Europe April  for debate on EIT structure).

German Presidency site
Press release on EIT