University of Tartu increases participation in EIT partnerships

University of Tartu became a full member in the EIT Health network of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), and also participates in two new Knowledge and Innovation Communities that were announced on 5 December 2018: EIT Manufacturing and EIT Urban Mobility. EIT funding to the new innovation communities will increase over the next three years from four to 80 million euros per year.

Full membership in EIT Health gives additional opportunities to UT researchers and students to initiate new development projects in collaboration with the leading research partners and enterprises of Europe.

In 2019, the EIT Manufacturing and EIT Urban Mobility partnerships will establish five or six regional innovation hubs and lay down the governance, financing and education models.

UT research groups can participate in innovation calls together with the network’s business partners; students can participate in pan-European business idea competitions and study according to the joint programmes of KIC universities and enterprises.

UT Vice Rector for Research Kristjan Vassil underlined that joining the EIT initiatives is a part of the university’s broader strategy to integrate into the research and innovation partnerships of the European Union. “To increase the external funding of the University of Tartu, we need to more actively participate in European partnerships. The university recently joined the European Big Data Value Association and plans to join more networks,” said Vassil.

Full membership in EIT Health is a great recognition to the University of Tartu’s capacity to offer unique solutions in the field of health. “It is not easy to be accepted to this network – we need to demonstrate the strengths of the university and clearly show the benefit our participation would give to the partnership,” said Kristjan Vassil.

“In the field of health, Estonia has the unique potential to use the data of the gene bank and the state e-health registries for developing new personalised medicine services and products, and use the EIT’s help to scale these solutions up to the European level,” Vassil said, as an example.

The UT Institute of Technology develops artificial muscles in cooperation with Philips, and various other educational and development projects have been carried out.

Full membership enables to undertake larger and more complex projects and also involve other UT research groups in these activities.

The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) is a EU-financed independent agency that strengthens Europe’s competitiveness and innovation capacity in high value-added manufacturing and service sectors.

EIT nurtures entrepreneurial talent and supports innovative ideas by establishing regional Knowledge and Innovation Communities, which comprise leading companies, universities and research centres.

Further information: Taivo Raud, Head of Grant Office, 737 6193, 5645 6580, taivo.raud@ut.ee

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