A report dealing with a pilot economic evaluation of the High Performance Computing and Networking (HPCN) projects funded by the EU's Information Technologies (ESPRIT) research programme is now available. The research work was carried out between July and December 1996, by external consultants on behalf of the Commission. The methodology involved interviews with participants in projects selected as a representative statistical sample of all projects financed under the HPCN domain. This aimed to assess the real economic effects generated by participants for their own benefit, mainly in terms of sales and cost reductions. Only aggregated results are presented, as some of the figures used are confidential. Two types of economic effects were detected in the study, those directly related to the objectives of the research project (direct effects) and those which go beyond the scope of the objectives of the projects (indirect effects). The main results include: - From the 43 participants surveyed, 16 direct and 109 indirect effects were measured; - Indirect effects included technological transfers, while weaker commercial effects and organizational effects were also detected; - Direct effects involved innovations stemming directly from the actual project; - Larger firms generated more direct effects, while SMEs generated more indirect effects; - There was no correlation between the effects and the funds invested.