It is well known that to carry out an activity or to implement a task in cooperation results in higher efficiency, wider problem solving approach and the development of the knowledge base for each involved organisation. Driven by this approach, the three European initiatives met for the second time to discuss recent developments and results of their activities and to agree on future collaboration cases in order to coordinate activities, avoid duplications of efforts and to maximise impact. The MAPEER SME(Making Progress and Economic enhancement a Reality for SMEs), the GPRIX (Good Practices in Innovation Support Measures for SMEs) and the RAPPORT (Building RAPPORT between Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises and Public or Private Research Capabilities) projects are striving to support regional, national and European level policy makers and programme managers to create a more attractive R+D+I programme environment for Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and to involve more SMEs into R+D+I activities that will help to contribute towards a more competitive Europe. The MAPEER SME project has selected and analysed many national or regional level R+D+I programmes that count as the most important R+D+I funding sources in the 27 European member states plus Bosnia Herzegovina. The database of the analysed programmes is a useful information source for SMEs searching for R+D+I funding programmes in Europe. The RAPPORT project has presented its plan to identify best practices. The plan is based on the differentiation between public sector research schemes and public private partnerships as well as the distinction between SMEs of high and low absorptive capacity. All projects committed to demonstrate added value in benchmarking the programmes and in identifying the best practice cases based on sound selection criteria. With the supporting and encouraging supervision of Ms Andrea Erdei, DG Research, participants agreed on sharing information on national level SME stakeholders, programme managers and the analysis of the identified programmes and will jointly apply for organising sessions or satellite events at international conferences. This second meeting has constituted the consolidation of the concertation efforts within the Research for SMEs field, paving the way for fruitful results of the cooperation, making the European Commission contribution much more efficient. In order to analyse the results of the cooperation and to identify further collaboration cases a third concertation meeting is foreseen in January 2011. If you want to get involved on the debates of the three projects (responding questionnaires, submitting proposals, becoming member of the Experts Panel, participating at the seminars and conferences), do not hesitate to contact the project Coordinators or as a single point of access the press contact person of the 3 projects.
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czechia, Germany, Denmark, Estonia, Spain, Finland, France, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Latvia, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Sweden, Slovenia, Slovakia, United Kingdom