Brussels, 16 December 2010
Digital Agenda: ENIAC and ARTEMIS public-private partnerships delivering, but need more industry and Member State commitment
The European Commission has today endorsed a report by a panel of independent experts which calls on EU industry and Member States to reinforce their support for ARTEMIS and ENIAC, two public-private partnerships (established as Joint Undertakings) for collaborative research in the fields of nanoelectronics and embedded systems (used widely in cars, smart phones, power plants and elsewhere. The experts concluded that the current partnership model is good for industry, good for Member States, and good for Europe. However, they also found that more financial resources are needed from EU Member States and that industry needs to demonstrate a stronger commitment towards a European strategy if ARTEMIS and ENIAC are to realise their full potential. Boosting European research and development in information and communications technologies is a key objective of the Digital Agenda for Europe (see IP/10/581, MEMO/10/199 and MEMO/10/200).
Commission Vice President for the Digital Agenda Neelie Kroes said "ENIAC and ARTEMIS are proving valuable for Europe's growth and competitiveness. But to continue European success in nanoelectronics and embedded systems we will need to pool more resources. Industry and EU Member States need to invest twice as much in the next three years as they have so far if we wish to accomplish our initial ambitions of €2.5-3 billion programmes."
The Commission report adopted today welcomes recommendations from a panel of independent experts led by Dr Wulf Bernotat who conducted an interim evaluation of ARTEMIS and ENIAC.
Established in 2008 (see IP/08/284), these partnerships commit industry, 23 EU Member States, Norway, and the EU to pool financial resources and jointly implement European research agendas on embedded systems and nanoelectronics which strengthen Europe’s future growth, competitiveness and sustainable development.
ARTEMIS and ENIAC run projects which help address societal challenges such as environment protection, energy efficiency, health, communication, transport and life style. To date, ARTEMIS and ENIAC have launched 43 projects. For example, they have invested a total of €150 million (of which €65 million comes from public funding) in 8 projects which target energy efficiency improvements across various technologies and applications. This includes the Scalopes project to optimise multi-core architectures like communication infrastructure, surveillance systems, smart mobile terminals and stationary video & entertainment systems and CSSL to develop and demonstrate affordable smart solid state light sources for consumers.
Investment below expectation
The report notes that the EU and the Joint Undertakings' Member States together have so far committed €576 million across the two partnerships, well short of the €900 million initially forecast to meet the objectives of the partnerships between 2008 and 2010. The report also recommends that Member States should better align their priorities at European level.
Need for top-level industry engagement
The experts also call for strategic re-focusing of the two bodies, urging top-level industry executives to take responsibility for this input.
The Commission acknowledges the experts' recommendations and will take immediate action with the other parties to achieve the original objectives of ARTEMIS and ENIAC in strategic and financial terms. For example, the Commission will call on Member States to agree on multi-annual budgetary contribution plans.
The Commission also will keep working on the progressive integration of ARTEMIS and ENIAC and the related Eureka clusters CATRENE and ITEA2, two inter-governmental initiatives in the same fields of activity.
The Commission has identified longer-term actions to improve the set-up and workings of any potential successor Public-Private Partnerships in terms of flexibility and efficiency.
Early in 2011, Vice President Kroes intends to convene the industrial leaders and the Ministers concerned to discuss the way forward.
ENIAC and ARTEMIS were set up respectively by Council Regulation 72/2008/EC and Council Regulation No 74/2008 of 20 December 2007 (see MEMO/07/479), published in the EU's Official Journal on 4 February 2008. Both Joint Undertakings are created for a period until 2017, with new research projects being started through 2013.
At present, the following countries participate in the ENIAC Joint Undertaking: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, the Slovak Republic, Spain, Sweden, and the UK.
ARTEMIS has the following participating countries: Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Germany, Denmark, Estonia, Spain, Finland, France, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, The Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Sweden, Slovenia and the UK.
The Commission's report will be available on: