Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Commission publishes examples of successful CRAFT projects

Special mechanisms have recently been developed at European level to encourage SMEs to participate in the Community research programmes. Among these mechanisms is the CRAFT (cooperative research action for technology) scheme which allows medium- and low-tech SMEs to group toge...
Special mechanisms have recently been developed at European level to encourage SMEs to participate in the Community research programmes. Among these mechanisms is the CRAFT (cooperative research action for technology) scheme which allows medium- and low-tech SMEs to group together and subcontract research to a third party (a university, research centre, or other company, for example).

Under the Third RTD Framework Programme, CRAFT succeeded in tripling the number of SMEs participating in the Community's Industrial and Materials Technologies programme (BRITE/EURAM). As a result, it was decided under the Fourth RTD Framework Programme to extend the CRAFT scheme to six other programmes. In addition, ten programmes implement exploratory awards, providing SMEs with financial support for preparing project proposals. CRAFT and the exploratory awards are grouped together under the heading "Technology stimulation measures for SMEs" (TSMEs). To date, some 1,500 SMEs are participating in projects funded by the TSME scheme.

The European Commission's SME Coordination Unit coordinates the implementation of the TSMEs across these ten programmes and is responsible for preparing common promotional and support documents. The Unit has now produced a document identifying ten examples of projects that illustrate the CRAFT "philosophy" (i.e. enabling groups of SMEs with similar technical problems but insufficient research means to engage third parties - called RTD performers - to carry out research on their behalf). The document is intended to illustrate the types of projects that can successfully be supported by the CRAFT scheme.

As more projects come to a successful end, they will be added to the document.

Source: European Commission, DG XII
DE FR

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