Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


Innovation is a policy priority for all Member States. Throughout the European Union, hundreds of policy measures and support schemes have been implemented in the past few years or are in preparation. Their diversity reflects the diversity of the underlying conditions, cultural preferences land political priorities in the Member States. But the convergence of the essential traits of these policies also reflects the growing perception of innovation policy as a truly European task, in the evolution of which the Lisbon Summit has been one of the most visible landmarks.

To support this process towards convergence, the European Commission is collecting and analysing information on innovation policies in the EU through a project launched in 1999 and entitled "Trend Chart on Innovation in Europe". In the area of innovation, this project provides policy-makers and managers of support schemes with summarised information and statistics on policies, performance and trends in the EU. It has also become the basis for benchmarking and the exchange of 'good practices'.

The Trend Chart project builds upon the European Commission's 1996 Innovation Action Plan(1) and the 1995 Green Paper on Innovation(2). Both documents promoted the "system-based" view of innovation which considers the "innovation system" to be highly dynamic and influenced by many interrelated factors. These factors include the educational system, the regulatory, legislative and fiscal framework, the competitive environment, the legislation on patents and intellectual property, the research infrastructure, and innovation support services. Annex 1 (see page 33) provides an overview of the classification system of policy measures used under both the Action Plan and the Trend Chart.

The present report is based upon information gathered in 1999 by the Trend Chart correspondents' network. For more information: (

Additional information

Authors: EC 5th Framework Programme Innovation of SME's,
Bibliographic Reference: EUR: N/A (2000), 40pp, Euro: free of charge
Availability: Available from the European Commission, DG Innovation Helpdesk email: fax: +352-4301-32084
ISBN: ISBN: 92-828-8866-5
Record Number: 200012988 / Last updated on: 2004-06-22
Original language: en
Available languages: en