Skip to main content
European Commission logo
English English
CORDIS - EU research results
Content archived on 2024-06-16

Support for European aeronautical SMEs - phase V

Final Report Summary - AEROSME V (Support for european aeronautical SMEs - phase V)

AEROSME V was a support action coordinated by ASD, the 'Aerospace and defence industries association of Europe', representing the aerospace industry in Europe in all matters of common interest.

The project addressed the needs of aeronautical SMEs, which showed a low participation in previous framework programmes. At the instigation of the industry and with the active support of the European Commission, the AEROSME project was started to address this issue. AEROSME informs and supports Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) interested in joining European technology projects.

The project objectives were:
- to support aeronautical SMEs in advancing their technology base and their competitiveness through participation in European Research and development (R&D) projects to improve and maintain the competitiveness of the European aeronautical supply chain;
- to promote SME participation in the Framework Programmes' calls by providing the necessary supporting and information services;
- to stimulate international cooperation by supporting and coordinating a reliable network between SMEs, industry, research institutes, universities and other entities;
- to support the aerospace sector of the new Member States in joining the European aerospace community;
- to stimulate the exchange of information and views among the various tiers of the supply chain by providing a communication platform not only for SMEs but also for large enterprises and research organisations which usually have little direct access to the SME community.

A wide awareness campaign across Europe was implemented before each call covered by the project, namely the Sixth Framework Programme (FP6) third call (issued in April 2005 with deadline on the 13 July 2005) and then the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) first call (issued in December 2006). In total, 38 workshops were organised and / or attended, to present the FP6 rules of participation and then the new FP7 features, disseminate information on project proposals, provide individual consulting, matchmaking, etc. The workshops were organised in cooperation with the respective national or regional associations. In addition to the AEROSME staff, a representative from respectively the European Commision, the industry, the research establishments and the universities usually presented their view, their way of work and the specific support available from their side.

The services of AEROSME were provided to the SMEs of all the countries associated to FP6. However, a particular effort was dedicated to the new Member States and Candidate Countries, to support their integration in the European Aeronautics community and their access to the FP6 project proposals. Since very little information was available, a document presenting information on aeronautics, space and defence sectors and related topics of the new Member States and Candidate Countries was set up. This document was widely circulated to various sectorial and interest groups in view of the FP6 third call. It was also made available for download on the AEROSME website.

Thanks to the established network of contacts, which include large companies (represented in the Industrial Management Groups – IMG4), research establishments, universities, national and regional associations, etc., AEROSME provided an effective communication platform for all players in the aeronautics community and a single point of reference for all inquiries and networking in the aerospace sector. The coverage of all 33 countries associated with FP6, ensured a truly pan-European approach.

Through tailored services such as the helpdesk, the website, the SME database and the newsletters, the project provided a 'one stop shop' for inquiries on both EU research and supply chain issues, ensuring also an impartial approach not linked to national or commercial interests.

AEROSME carried out specific actions, in cooperation with the large companies (IMG4) and other European Commission supporting initiatives, which facilitated the access of SMEs to information on research strategies and proposal preparation activities, which are not usually available to smaller companies, and thus encouraged the SME participation in both the third call of FP6 and the first call of FP7. Along with the other European Commission supporting actions, AEROSME contributed to increase the percentage participation of SMEs in FP6.

Via the workshops and the mapping document, AEROSME stepped up the visibility of the aerospace sectors of the new Member States and Candidate Countries and encouraged their integration into the existing networks and international cooperation activities.