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Brussels, 13 October 2009

What innovation policy for the EU? The first-ever European Innovation Summit investigates

The 1st European Innovation Summit (EIS) will turn the European Parliament into an Innovation Showcase from 13 to 14 October 2009. Being the first of its kind, the Summit provides a unique opportunity for organisations to demonstrate and explain how they contribute to positioning Europe as a global innovation leader. The Summit is organised by the platform Knowledge4Innovation (K4I)/Lisbon Forum in partnership with the European Year of Creativity and Innovation 2009. Highlights of the Summit include an exhibition with 33 exhibitors, conference sessions, networking events, a special welcome reception for new and returning MEPs with the Commission President José Manuel Barroso, and a plenary session on “Europe’s Future Nobel Prize Winners” with the President of the European Parliament, Jerzy Buzek.

The first-ever European Innovation Summit is a large-scale conference in the premises of the European Parliament with 800 participants and 120 speakers. The participants include around 200 students and young people who have come to hear EU policy makers, representatives from Member States, regional organisations and stakeholders from the academic and private sectors discuss how best to encourage young people to follow careers in science and technology and provide the next generation of potential Nobel prize winners. Schools throughout Europe will also be able to follow the debate live via the Parliament’s Internet TV channel. A few examples of topics which will be dealt with in the sessions are: 

  • intellectual property rights;

  • promoting science and technology careers to Europe’s youth;

  • best practices used by regions and cities;

  • existing EU and Member State innovation policies; and

  • information for small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

The topics will be introduced by expert panellists and lively exchanges with the audience will be encouraged.

European Commission President José Manuel Barroso said:

"Innovation will be the key to Europe's recovery and to building a more sustainable economy and society after the crisis. Innovation is not just about product development: it is about how our society changes and improves. Innovation is about the way we do business, the way we work, the options we choose as consumers and citizens."

The President of the European Parliament, Jerzy Buzek, said: " Europe has a great tradition of outstanding scientists and intensive dedication to research and development, however excellence is lost somewhere between the laboratory and the market. Since the Lisbon Agenda entered our vocabulary some ten years ago, Europe has aimed at becoming the leading knowledge-based economy in the world. The good news is, we succeeded; the bad news, it’s not enough. What we need is to learn not only to produce knowledge, but also how to transform it into innovations representing real added-value to our society and economy. In this sense, we are back to school and the European Innovation Summit is the first lesson of the newly opened school year. "

More information:

Official website of the European Year of Creativity and Innovation:


The EIS is organised by K4I / Lisbon Forum, a platform launched in December 2008 to help policy makers and the business and science communities introduce their respective agendas and address the most pressing issues concerning Europe's knowledge based economy and society.

2009 is the European Year of Creativity and Innovation. The Year aims to raise awareness of importance of creativity and innovation as a key competence of personal, social and economic development. Hundreds of activities and projects which represent good practice in innovation and creativity will be highlighted, promoted and disseminated during the EYCI2009.

The activities of the EYCI2009 are aimed at a range of different groups including young people, educators, firms and policy makers, as well as the general public. Civil society organisations are encouraged to mobilise and get involved at European, national and local levels.

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