Skip to main content

Supporting sustainable participation of industry, in particular high-technology, research-intensive SMEs in EU-funded research in the Health Sector

Final Report Summary - FIT FOR HEALTH 2.0 (Supporting sustainable participation of industry, in particular high-technology, research-intensive SMEs in EU-funded research in the Health Sector)

Executive Summary:
Fit for Health 2.0 aimed to sustainably enhance the participation of European small or medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Calls for the Horizon 2020 Health Theme. Focusing on research-intensive, high technology SMEs the project offered targeted support measures, covering the entire innovation cycle of the Health sector. Key assets of Fit for Health 2.0 were highly qualified consultancy, hands-on trainings, effective SME-academia matchmaking and guidance to strategic use of Horizon 2020 by SMEs and clusters. SMEs and researchers have been supported during all phases of Horizon 2020-Health-projects, including consortium building, proposal writing, grant negotiation, project management and efficient valorisation of project results.
Cooperation between SMEs and academia was strongly encouraged by dedicated services and tools: A well-established, highly visible database and a sophisticated matchmaking-tool together with the complementary BiotechGate database supported the formation of competitive project consortia. The collection of expertise profiles from 4.377 SMEs and academia ensured an international and quality proven pool that perfectly served as platform for presenting the outstanding expertise to the scientific community and assisted in finding appropriate project partners for collaborative projects. Around 548 collaborations had thus been generated between SMEs and research organisations for participation in H2020 Calls. Our Fit for Health 2.0 platform had close to 15.000 registered users, and 1.053 members joined our LinkedIn group.
2 Partnering Days for supporting SMEs in researchers in finding suitable project partners for their Horizon 2020-Health-projects targeted 441 participants who exchanged their ideas in almost 1.300 bilateral meetings.
Special focus was given to a modular set of trainings: 12 target group-specific on-site and 12 virtual trainings for Horizon 2020 Newcomers, Applicants and participants of funded Horizon 2020 projects were a hallmark of the project. Moreover, 4 trainings focussed on the exploitation of project results together with 3 specific exploitation Partnering Events encouraged SMEs and researchers in bringing their obtained research results to the market. In total, almost 1.000 SMEs and academia attended those specific partnerings and requested for 4.274 bilateral meetings.
Strategy development for high-tech SMEs & clusters pursued a high leverage approach to sustainably enhance SME participation in Horizon 2020. A special mentoring and coaching approach targeted 30 companies on an individual basis and 4 strategy trainings supported SMEs and clusters for a strategic, sustainable approach towards Horizon 2020. Companies were informed via our 22 Financing Summaries with comprised information and statistics about latest financing activities in the life science field in Europe and Israel.

We promoted our own Fit for Health 2.0 services and activities offered to SMEs and researchers in Europe and we offered on-line customized services, platforms, new media and support items. We offered a Helpdesk-section on our website, with almost 700 questions answered and we published 3 tutorials, 3 fact sheets and 7 miniclips of our webinars. Via 4 videos we put successful SMEs and academia in the spotlight at the occasion of different events.
In total, more than 3.300 SMEs and researchers were trained in 20 on-site trainings and webinars and 1.430 SMEs and academia supported via 5 Partnering Days with 5.570 bilateral meetings. At the occasion of 266 Life Sciences events we informed 25.500 researchers and SMEs.
The consortium comprised highly experienced NCPs and Enterprise Europe Network-members together with renowned senior trainers on innovation, technology transfer, financing and IPR. This ensures perfect coverage of the entire innovation cycle. To maximize synergies, this efficiently managed network was strategically connected to other key support networks for SMEs.
Project Context and Objectives:
The overall objective of Fit for Health 2.0 aimed to sustainably enhance the participation of European industry, in particular research intensive, high-technology small or medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the health-related theme of Horizon 2020.

General objectives of Fit for Health2.0 focused on:
• Support of industry, in particular SMEs, in taking a strategic approach to their sustainable participation in projects related to funding opportunities offered in the Health sector
• Highly qualified advice, mentoring and coaching to SMEs and academia through all phases of the innovation cycle of a project’s life time, from project idea to successful exploitation of generated results
• Stimulating cooperation between SMEs and academia in joint research projects and for commercialization of results
• Innovative, target-group specific modular trainings addressing all project phases
• Putting SMEs in the spotlight – increasing their visibility to the scientific community and corporate partners
• Leveraging SMEs’ potential for maximizing their funding options


Strategic approach for participation in Horizon 2020 & Mentoring and coaching SMEs
This objective addressed a crucial challenge to “full” SME participation in Horizon 2020, namely the problem that many European SMEs lack a mid- and long-term strategy steering their R&D activities. This is of immediate relevance for any approach to enhance the participation of SMEs in Horizon 2020, as Horizon 2020 itself is a strategic programme with mid- and long-term objectives.
Within Fit for Health 2.0 a concept for helping SMEs in getting orientation in H2020 was offered, ranging from “starting trainings” on the whole picture of European funding opportunities, to more tailor-made services for high-tech, research intensive SMEs with the mentoring & coaching support and finally to dedicated “strategy trainings”. The various services were developed for SMEs and clusters. The concept helped SMEs to develop mid-term planning for improved acquisition of funding from various sources and to get best advice to identify suitable regional, national and international options. Moreover, it supported them in their long-term planning for building a network structure and strategic investments that enables them for sustainable participation.

Stimulation of cooperation between SMEs and academia
One of the key criteria for the success of collaborative projects is the composition of the consortium. Competitive consortia combine the expertise offered by excellent universities and research centres with innovative SMEs. The importance of SMEs in project consortia was underpinned in FP7, giving a higher emphasis to SMEs in respective calls and topics, e.g. by allocating more budget to activities to be undertaken by SMEs. This policy will be continued in H2020, and SMEs and academia will consequently be supported by Fit for Health 2.0.
Fit for Health 2.0 offered three independent and complementing services that are key for consortium building and that facilitated this process.
An important feature of Fit for Health 2.0 is a well-established, user-friendly and quality-checked database, containing around 2,511 new expertise profiles and partner searches. Fit for Health 2.0 took also profit from a sophisticated on-line matchmaking facility for project consortia in the Health Theme. In addition, useful collaborative workspaces for special interest groups of SMEs and academia in communicating and setting up project proposals have been offered.
In addition, SMEs and researchers got information and data from BiotechGate which is currently the most extensive commercial database of health-related SMEs in Europe including biotech (including agro, food, drug development and industrial biotech), medtech, pharma, academia and suppliers. The database contains detailed profiles over 26.000 organizations worldwide and more than 14.000 in Europe.
As third measure, H2020-Partnering events are important to meet and provide project ideas to a large community together with the possibility of bilateral on-site meetings. Those events (concerted with the launch of respective calls in the health-related area in H2020) provided high quality platforms for face-to-face meetings between coordinators of H2020 health-related proposals and potential project partners.

Innovative, target-group specific modular trainings
The strongly increasing demand for high quality, hands-on trainings on all aspects of Horizon 2020 was tackled by the establishment of a modular set of trainings, offering a target-group-specific, highly visible Fit for Health 2.0 training scheme. It covered all aspects of Horizon 2020 projects, starting with the project idea, proceeding to proposal writing, grant negotiation and management, and also specifically addressing the exploitation of project results.
Fit for Health 2.0 targeted Horizon 2020 starters, Health-proposers and Health-project participants with carefully designed trainings including practical exercises. Two specific types of trainings covered the exploitation of project results and strategy development for SMEs and clusters. To maximizing the number of participants reached and to increase the impact of onsite-trainings, virtual trainings on key issues of interest complemented on-site trainings.
Generating Value: Making the most of Health project results
Converting new knowledge into new products and services is an acknowledged bottleneck in the European economy. Specific exploitation trainings highlighted different exploitation routes and best practices. Experts for valuation, business development, financing, from the Enterprise Europe Network and the IPR-Helpdesk provided hands-on and tailor-made information.
Exploitation partnering events, carried out together with e.g. the Enterprise Europe Network, joined participants of Health-related projects seeking to exploit their results with the clientele of the Enterprise Europe Network interested in commercializing these results.

Promotion of Success and knowledge dissemination
Fit for Health 2.0 services were promoted by an attractive and user-friendly website, offering on-line customized services like a FAQ section, platforms, new media like a LinkedIn Group and an App used for 5 training events. We offered a download section, covering tutorials & fact sheets, webinars, videos, mini-clips and reference documents.
Short videos featured successful SMEs with outstanding performances. Moreover, videos reflected the support offered at the occasion of different events, like our partnering days, strategy trainings and via mentoring and coaching, offering test pitching to SMEs, training their performances before meeting investors. Our videos were published on YouTube and displayed on the Fit for Health 2.0 website, offering those selected SMEs an excellent promotion platform for their research and marketable results.
Project Results:
Fit for Health 2.0 was initiated to sustainably support SMEs and researchers during the entire innovation cycle and all phases of research projects following the logical and chronologic progression of a RTD project, from the first idea till the market entry and thereby covering each step with dedicated instruments. Key assets of Fit for Health 2.0 were highly qualified consultancy, hands-on trainings, effective SME-academia matchmaking and guidance to strategic use of Horizon 2020 by SMEs and clusters. SMEs and researchers were supported during all phases of Horizon 2020-projects, including consortium building, proposal writing, grant negotiation, project management and efficient valorisation of project results.

Orientation and Strategy Development for SMEs

We offered tailor-made support for industry, in particular high-tech SMEs, in developing their strategic approach towards H2020, allowing to take maximum advantage of funding opportunities. Our approach provided a basis for their sustainable participation in Framework Programmes.
SMEs and researchers were supported through 2 starting and 4 strategy trainings, reaching up to 315 participants. This was accompanied by a continuous mentoring and coaching scheme which was offered to 30 SMEs from 12 countries. We have supported 6 of them at the occasion of presenting short business plans.
22 life science financing summaries comprising information and statistics about the latest financing activities in the life science field in Europe and Israel were published.


Task 1.1 – Starting Trainings for H2020
Task leader: Partner no. 3, JUELICH
The first international starting training for Horizon 2020 took place in Budapest, Hungary, on 18 February 2014. It explicitly addressed newcomers to the framework programme and specifically SMEs were encouraged to attend this training. The programme was therefore designed to cover the structure of Horizon 2020 with a special focus on SC1, participation rules and funding instruments, chances for SMEs as well as an overview about the proposal preparation and evaluation. More than 150 representatives from academia and industry registered for this training and 89 of them actually attended. The majority of the participants came from Hungary and neighbouring countries, predominantly EU-13.
The second international newcomers training took place in Bucharest, Romania on 20 May 2015. Fit for Health 2.0 trainers designed the program according to the structure and the funding opportunities in Horizon 2020 and put a strong focus on Societal Challenge 1 aspects. For this event, 88 representatives from academia and industry registered before the event and 91 actually attended, again, the majority of the participants came from predominantly EU-13 countries. In total, we trained 180 researchers and SMEs.


Task 1.2 – Mentoring and coaching SMEs and clusters
Task leader: Partner no. 5, SEZ
Mentoring and coaching was a new support service offered by Fit for Health 2.0 for the very first time. It addressed the lack of mid- and long-term strategy for R&D activities and provided personalized support through all phases of the innovation cycle and included bilateral contact through the respective Fit for Health 2.0 partners. It was restricted to high technology, research-intensive SMEs offering tailor-made support.

As this support scheme had to be implemented for the very first time, a series of guidance material for all Fit for Health 2.0 partners involved had been prepared, addressing SMEs in a unified and harmonised way. For promoting the support measure a dedicated section had been prepared on our website (http://www.fitforhealth.eu/page/mentoring-coaching-smes) , explaining the scheme and showing who are the mentors and coaches, focusing on their particular field of expertise. In addition, promotion flyers had been prepared to inform SMEs e.g. at the occasion of bilateral meetings and to explain which kind of benefit they could get out of this support. For the Fit for Health 2.0 partners a guide had been prepared, explaining in detail the activities covered by the mentoring and coaching support. It explained how to identify, attract and select SMEs, including some mandatory criteria like research intensity, projects in pipeline and IPR-regime and how to monitor and evaluate it. To help mentors for a unified selection procedure a template assessing dedicated needs of the SME in terms of research intensity, projects in pipeline, IPR regime, regulatory aspects, valuation & financing, business planning and long term visions had been prepared. Based on this, the identification of 1-2 coaches for the company could be made, again using a template.
As support material for companies, a business plan executive summary and 10 key points for writing and presenting a business plan including a checklist as well as a template for a short business plan presentation had been established.
In addition to the support established during reporting period 1 and to strategy trainings organised by Fit for Health 2.0 in Copenhagen and Vienna, respectively, registered SMEs were contacted prior to the training. We offered them to presenting short business plans to the trainer team, getting feedback on their ideas and strategies. SMEs were provided a template prepared by our trainers, presenting their ideas for 10 minutes, followed by some first questions of the trainer team for 5 minutes. Trainers provided then feedback for another 15 minutes, focussing on their key expertise like IP, business development and financing sources. Feedback was summarized in minutes and provided to the companies. In total, 6 companies used this kind of support, coming from Austria (3), Germany (2) and Turkey (1).
In total, 30 SMEs have been supported.
The 30 companies are located in 12 European countries (Austria (6), Belgium (1), Denmark (1), France (1), Germany (7), Italy (2), Spain (2), Sweden (5), The Netherlands (2), Turkey (1) and UK (2).


Task 1.3 – Strategy trainings
Task leader: Partner no. 4, Eurice
The first international strategy training took place in Barcelona, Spain, on 29-30 April 2014. It was focused on executives of SMEs to provide them with strategy development training. The training comprised key lectures and presentations of Fit for Health 2.0 partners and external experts, touching various strategic aspects like business development, financing, legal aspects etc. Next to the presentations, 3 discussion groups were built and experts from the Fit for Health 2.0 team together with external experts joined those groups for discussions, encouraging SMEs to discuss their individual problems etc., getting feedback from the experts but also sharing their experiences with the others. Participants for the training finally included 45 senior representatives from SMEs (in total 50 registrations). The majority of the participants came from Spain, but a smaller number from all over Europe.
The second international strategy training took place in Copenhagen, Denmark, on 8-9 October 2015. Trainers of Fit for Health 2.0 together with an external speaker from the IPR-helpdesk and a keynote speaker from the pharmaceutical industry gave insights into business development aspects, IP-related issues in this context and what to consider for valuations and negotiations. 25 participants registered for the training, the majority came from Denmark, with a smaller number from all over Europe (Austria, Finland, Germany, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and Turkey).
The third international strategy training took place in Vienna, Austria, on 12-13 October 2016. For the training we prepared a case study in which we valued a drug in development and discussed how to negotiate a fair licensing deal. In addition, we discussed which pitfalls can be circumvented and what needs to be considered for business planning around IP including "Freedom to Operate". Moreover, better understanding about writing and communicating business plans were presented. The training was organised in collaboration with LISAvienna, the Viennese Life Sciences Cluster and followed by a so-called “International Business Treff”, taking place the day before. This event focused on experiences made so far for SMEs in Horizon 2020, showing opportunities next to the challenges companies are faced with. A total number of 147 participants registered for Business Treff (105 participated). For the strategy training we received 42 registrations, the actual number of participants was 38, coming mainly from Austria as well as from Germany, Hungary, UK and the Ukraine.
The fourth international strategy training Training was organised on October 12, 2017 in Berlin, Germany. The training content was the very same like for the previous training in Vienna. A total number of 66 participants registered, the actual number was 27 mainly from SMEs as well a few with academic background and spin-off/business activities.
In total, we trained 135 persons, mainly SMEs.


Task 1.4 – Tracking of investments into European SMEs
Task leader: Partner no. 11, VV
The life science financing summary comprises information and statistics about the latest financing activities in the life science field in Europe and Israel.
Based on the information collected in the Biotechgate database, the report comprises various sections like an introduction to the financing activity of the previous 2 months, with a focus on private financing for Biotech companies in the field of Therapeutics and Diagnostics. The „financing highlights” section presents a digest of the news release pertaining to the largest private financings raised by Biotech companies in the field of Therapeutics and Diagnostics in the reporting period. A list of private investors that have invested in Biotech companies in the field of Therapeutics and Diagnostics in the reporting period is shown. An analysis of the private investments (Biotech, Therapeutics and Diagnostics companies) by quarter provides an overview of the distribution of investments by e.g. phase of development, size of investment and round of investment in the previous quarters. The report closes with a table that summarizes both public and private financing of life science companies, i.e. whose main activity is in Therapeutics and Diagnostics, Medical Technology and Research and Development services.
The first summary was published in February 2014 and continued bimonthly since then and all 22 summaries could be found online via http://www.fitforhealth.eu/downloads/life-sciences-financing-summary-europe.


Support for Applicants

We stimulated the cooperation between SMEs and academia in joint research projects and successful proposal submissions to health-related calls of H2020 (either as coordinators or project partners).
SMEs and researchers were supported through 4 on-site applicant trainings, reaching 273 participants. This was accompanied by 4 webinars, reaching 830 participants.
14.990 users were registered on the Fit for Health 2.0 website, visiting our website 110.891 times since its launch. We have published 4.377 expertise profiles (631 for SMEs) and partner searches on our Fit for Health 2.0 database. Around 548 collaborations were generated for participation in H2020 calls.
In 2 Horizon 2020 Partnering events, 441 SMEs and researchers attended, with 1.295 bilateral meetings taking place.


Task 2.1 – On-site Trainings on Proposal Writing for Applicants
Task leader: Partner no. 1, FFG
The first international training for Horizon 2020 applicants in Health, Demographic Change and Wellbeing took place in The Hague, Netherlands, on 26 June 2014. It explicitly addressed applicants who successfully passed stage 1 of the current 2-stage H2020-PHC-Call and have been invited by the EC for preparing a full proposal. Accordingly, the training focused on the 3 main sections to be prepared, taking the template for proposal preparation as basis for explanations and recommendations. 60 participants, mainly coordinators, attended this training, based on invitations provided by the SC1-NCP-community. The majority of participants came from the Netherlands, in total applicants from 11 countries attended the training.
The second international training for Horizon 2020 applicants took place in Madrid, Spain on 23 June 2015. It addressed applicants who were planning to prepare an application for the upcoming Call planned to be launched by the end of September 2015. Like for the previous training we focussed on the 3 main sections to be prepared for an application. A total number of 147 participants registered for the training whereas the actual number of participants from academia and industry was 87. The majority of participants came from Spain, in total applicants from 8 countries attended the training.
The third international training for Horizon 2020 applicants took place in London, UK on 25 November 2015. It addressed applicants who were planning to prepare an application for the one-stage H2020-PM-2016 Call on Health, demographic change and wellbeing, Personalised Medicine, launched on 14 October 2015. Like for the previous training, we kept the programme in focussing on the 3 main sections to be prepared for an application. A total number of 60 participants registered for the training whereas the actual number of participants from academia and industry was 35. We received cancellations after the attacks in Paris (Nov 13, 2015) and the related situation in Belgium, resulting in either difficulties or even impossibilities to travel. The majority of participants came from UK, in total applicants from 14 countries (UK, France, Spain, Italy, Germany, Ireland, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Latvia, Netherlands, Luxemburg, Bulgaria and Czech Republic) attended the training.
The fourth international training for Horizon 2020 applicants was organised in Rome, Italy, on 7 June 2016. In addition to the programme of previous trainings we included a section about the integration of information of clinical trials into the different sections of the proposal, as we do receive many questions around this issue during our daily work. A total number of 171 participants from 18 countries registered for the training whereas the actual number of participants from academia and industry was 91. The majority of participants came from Italy, in total applicants from 12 countries (Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Finland, Germany, Italy, Norway, Poland, Romania, Spain and Turkey) attended the training.
In total, we trained 273 researchers and SMES.


Task 2.2 – Virtual trainings for applicants (webinars)
Task leader: Partner no. 3, JUELICH
A first webinar “The new SME Instrument of Horizon 2020” was held on 14 March 2014. The presentation given by Ines Haberl (FFG) was focused on how the SME Instrument is designed and how it will be implemented under Horizon 2020. Moreover, details of the SME Instrument for preparing an application were explained and specific information was also provided on the PHC 12 Topic (Clinical research for the validation of biomarkers and/or diagnostic medical devices). A total number of 285 participants applied for the virtual session. The real number of participants varied of 140-145 during the session.
The second webinar was held on 29 January 2015 with the title “Fast Track to Innovation in Horizon 2020”. The presentation was focused on how the instrument „Fast Track to Innovation” is designed and how it will be implemented under Horizon 2020. Ines Haberl (FFG) explained specific details of this new instrument, focused on how to prepare applications and specific aspects were provided on evaluation procedure, ranking and timelines. A total number of 310 participants applied for the virtual session. The real number of participants during the session was 167.
The third webinar was held on 13 October 2015, entitled “How to maximise your impacts-section in Horizon 2020 projects”. This webinar was jointly organised with the IPR Helpdesk.
Experiences from the first rounds of calls for proposals clearly demonstrated that quite often proposers do not fully grasp the innovation dimension of Horizon 2020 projects and hence don’t meet expectations of the European Commission and expert evaluators. The webinar helped to understand how far a proposer should go in presenting exploitation strategies of expected project results, taking into account both academic/research exploitation and commercial exploitation. In a condensed manner, Eugene Sweeney (CEO Iambic Innovation LTD) exlained the main challenges in addressing questions related to innovation and impact in H2020 proposals. A total number of 512 participants applied for the virtual session. The real number of participants during the session was 260.
The fourth webinar in this work package was held on 3 February 2016 with the title “Webinar on third parties in Horizon 2020”. In Horizon 2020 the terms and conditions for the involvement of third parties often lead to ambiguities during project application and implementation. We therefore invited applicants, project partners and coordinators of Horizon 2020 projects. Martin Baumgartner (FFG, NCP for legal and financial issues in Austria) presented the rules and regulations for the involvement of third parties in Horizon 2020 projects. Application-oriented examples supported the understanding of the framework conditions for third party contributions. A total number of 459 participants applied for the virtual session. The real number of participants during the session was 258.

For all webinars questions could already be raised through the chat and were answered by the speaker after the presentation, a collection was compiled and provided to participants together with the slides and the recording of the session on the Fit for Health 2.0 website.
In total, we trained 830 researchers and SMEs.

For 3 webinars miniclips were recorded and published online (Webinar on the SME-instrument, Webinar on Fast Track to Innovation, How to maximize your impacts-section in Horizon 2020 projects).


Task 2.3 – International Database, matchmaking facility and free collaborative web-spaces
Task leader: Partner no. 5, EuroTop
Online management tool for profiles and partner searches of SMEs and academic institutes
The Fit for Health 2.0 partner search and matchmaking tool called euMatch (http://mm.fitforhealth.eu/) was developed for helping organisations in the various health-related, biotechnology or healthcare sectors to find partners to cooperate in EU funded projects. It was based on a database which had internal (restricted) and external (public) interface; the first one was accessible for project partners only and has several management options in order to enable validation and quality-check procedure; the second one was accessible for public (though for registered users only).
EuMatch had been completely redeveloped by EuroTop when starting Fit for Health 2.0 as a result of an evolutionary development of partner search tools since the previous Fit for Health project. It offered new and powerful features compared to the previous one in terms of user interface and administration of profiles with more powerful features.
Briefly, projects were created around topics, Calls and their specific aspects. Once a topic was closed for submission of proposals, profiles and project initiatives related to this closed topic were unpublished and excluded for further matchmaking.
The tool offered a profiles’ management dashboard. An individual was allowed to publish up to 3 expertise profiles and project initiatives. The profiles could be edited, unpublished and deleted. Users could start the matchmaking once the profile was validated.
A search function was available that allowed users to search for profiles or projects by a set of criteria (keyword, project status, project types, topics, country).
It was also available for mobile devices (tablets, smartphones).
The tool offered a message wall and a chat function through which potential partners can enter in discussions.
Automatic email notifications and reminders were available. The results of the partner searches could be exported to a word file. Project coordinators could create a project in the euMatch tool indicating the project details and the call topics. Potential partners wanting to cooperate in EU funded projects could create a profile indicating their expertise and commitment.
The tool automatically matched the projects with the available profiles based on keywords and text. The outcome was a list of possible matches. The identity of the profiles was kept confidential. The tool allowed the user to contact the potential partners.

Registered users, visits on website, expertise profiles and partner searches and collaborations
There are currently 14.990 registered users on the Fit for Health 2.0 website.
From these registered users, we registered 110.891 visits since our website was launched.
From the previous database inheritaded from the former Fit for Health project, 571 profiles have been updated/revised by users and 2.027 outdated or not attended were removed (78 % of the old database).
We have published 4.377 expertise profiles (631 for SMEs) and partner searches on our Fit for Health 2.0 database.
Around 548 collaborations were generated for participation in H2020 calls.

The matchmaking platform is very secure, offers data protection and has a high user experience satisfaction but needs to be continuously checked for quality and relevance.
The checking for completeness and accuracy of the partner search or expertise profiles is carried out within maximum 3 working days, based on a list of defined Fit for Health 2.0 quality criteria. Partner searches lacking in key quality criteria are not published, guaranteeing the reliability of the Fit for Health 2.0 database and matchmaking tool as a high quality platform. The same procedure applies to expertise profiles.

The Innovative Medicine Initiative (IMI) and the EU Joint Programme for Neurodegenerative Disease Research (JPND) have asked to use the Fit for Health 2.0 matchmaking platform for their own Call for proposals.
Importantly, based on the fact that collaboration is highly important and relevant in almost all EU funded projects the tool could easily be expanded to other research networks such as SC1-NCPs.

Free collaborative workspaces – project management tool for building H2020-Health consortia
15 free collaborative workspaces for special interest groups and H2020-Health consortia had been created in the collaborative platform called Succeed-IT, allowing SMEs and researchers to create an online platform to interact and possibly develop a joint proposal.
A user manual („Succeed-IT”) for the use of the collaborative platform together with a demonstration video had been prepared, explaining the structure and use of the facility.
10 projects used the Succeed-IT platform.


To evaluate the impact and thus the relevance of a potential continuation of euMATCH until the end of Horizon 2020 we carried out surveys tailored to three different target groups, i.e. expertise profiles, partner searches and SC1-NCPs. The outcome was sent to EC to underline the importance of this service for the clients. Although the continuation of euMATCH database until the end of Horizon 2020 has been considered as essential (33.3%) or important (57.5%), the database had to be closed on 31st October 2017 (=end of the project). A quality checking partnering database for Health clients is therefore no longer available.


Task 2.4 – Partnering Events for health-related projects in H2020
Task leader: Partner no. 9, FMMC

The first Health Partnering Event, one of the three planned during the Fit for Health 2.0 project duration, took place in Brussels, on the 17 September 2015, in close connection to the Open Info Day held in Brussels on the 18 September 2015. It was organised by Fit for Health 2.0 Health NCP Net 2.0 and Idealist. Initially, we planned our first partnering event already for autumn 2014, which had to be postponed as no Open Info Day to connect the event to has been organised by the EC (for details, please see our first periodic report).
The scope of the event was to bring together potential project coordinators with project partners. The focus was on matchmaking between researchers and high-technology research intensive SMEs in order to support the formation of competitive project consortia.
The Health Partnering Event was a full-day event. Before bilateral meetings took place we discussed together with experts and representatives from academia and industry (SME) what needs to be considered for a good consortium composition. In addition, we offered the floor to applicants who presented their ideas as short presentations to an audience interested in their specific area (Health and ICT, respectively). This was highly appreciated by companies, putting them in the spotlight and giving them visibility needed to attract interest for their ideas.
The interest for this event was very high and the number of registered participants was more than 300. After validating profiles, the final number of participants was 227, from 36 countries. 219 participants took part in 655 bilateral meetings. There were 632 international meetings (96.49% of the total number of meetings). Countries with the highest number of participants were Spain (37), Turkey (27), Belgium (23), Italy (15), United Kingdom (15), France (13), Latvia (12) and Poland (10).

The second Health Partnering Event took place in Brussels, on the 7 July 2016, in close connection to the Open Info Day held in Brussels at the European Commission on 8 July 2016. Again, it was organised by Fit for Health 2.0 together with Health NCP Net 2.0 and Idealist. For the morning session of this full day event we put our focus on various support measures under Horizon 2020 & IMI participation opportunities, offering an overview about the different projects and initiatives. Like for the first partnering day and before starting with bilateral meetings, we gave the floor to applicants who presented their ideas as short presentations to an audience interested in their specific area (Health personalised medicine topics and Health-related topics (ICT, SSH, Food Security), respectively).
Again, the interest for this event was very high, the number of registered participants has been approximately 430 (almost double the maximum number of participants – 200-250). The final number of validated participants has been 214, from 31 countries, including the organizers. There were 600 international meetings (93.75% of the total number of meetings), the total number of meetings was 640.
The countries with the highest number of participants were Spain (42), Italy (37), Belgium (33), Turkey (19), Germany (15) and the Netherlands (13).

It has to be stated here that the third (and last) Partnering event has been cancelled by European Commission without substitution. As the project ends before the upcoming Work Programme (2018-2020) will be published, no Partnering Event is allowed to take place before. Therefore, this Deliverable could not be fulfilled in agreement with the EC.
In total, 441 researchers and SMEs participated in our 2 H2020 partnering events, having 1.295 bilateral meetings.


Implementation of projects

We trained SMEs and academia for the successful and smooth implementation of projects, starting with the invitation to enter into contract negotiations.
SMEs and researchers were supported through 3 on-site trainings for project implementation in H2020 health-related projects and 1 training on clinical trials (instead of a fourth project implementation training – suggestion of EC), reaching 227 participants. This was accompanied by 8 webinars, reaching 1.323 participants.
359 participants attended the 7th EDCTP Forum, with Fit for Health 2.0 being presented over there. 2 EDCTP-workshops with 131 participants were organised.


Task 3.1 – On-site trainings for project implementation in H2020 health-related projects and EDCTP projects and workshops on clinical trials
Task leader: Partner no. 4, EURICE

The first International Training on Grant Agreement Preparation and Management took place in Brussels, Belgium on 22 January 2015. The event addressed single stage and two-stage coordinators whose proposals were positively evaluated in the Societal Challenge 1 call of 2014. The event was combined with the “Coordinators Day” organized by the EC and complemented the information offered on the Coordinators Day, providing additional presentations and tailor-made exercises on grant negotiation, project and clinical trials management with discussions of practical cases. Participants were formally invited by the EC and a total number of 98 participants registered for the training. The actual number of participants from academia and industry was 76. The training consisted of six modules on the topics The Consortium Agreement, Critical issues in negotiating Grant and especially Consortium Agreements, Scientific and financial management and reporting, Project management: tips and tools for monitoring your project, Clinical trials management and Audits.
The second international training on Grant Agreement Preparation and Management was organised on September 13, 2016 in Brussels, Belgium. The event addressed new coordinators whose proposals were positively evaluated in the Societal Challenge 1 call of 2016. Again, the training was combined with the EC’s “Coordinators Day” that took place the day before and complemented the information provided by the EC. Presentations and tailor-made exercises on grant preparation, project and clinical trials management with discussions of practical cases were prepared. A total number of 46 participants from academia and industry registered for the training, the actual number being 49. As compared to the last training, lower number of registrants participants could be a result of a separated registration procedure for both events (Coordinators Day and International Training), which was previously entirely organised by the EC.
The third full-day International Training on Grant Agreement Preparation and Management was organised on September 13, 2017 in Brussels, Belgium. This event addressed new coordinators whose proposals were positively evaluated in the Societal Challenge 1 call of 2017. Like previous trainings, this one was combined with the EC’s “Coordinators Day” that took place the day before. Like in 2016, presentations and tailor-made exercises on grant preparation, project and clinical trials management with discussions of practical cases were prepared. Participants were formally invited and registered via the EC. A total number of 63 participants from academia and industry registered for the training, the actual number was 57.
Instead of a 4th full-day International Training on Grant Agreement Preparation and Management we organized a half-day International Training on Clinical Trials in Horizon 2020: Challenges & Best Practices. This was based on feedback from the community and in accordance with the EC. The training was organised in the frame of a Clinical Trials Day on March 15, 2017 in Brussels, Belgium. The event addressed coordinators and researchers who are involved in a H2020 clinical trial proposal or project. The training was complemented by a second event, a Clinical Trials Expert Panel Meeting in the afternoon that focused on unit costs and financial issues of H2020 Clinical trials. The hands-on, interactive Clinical Trials training focused on basics for H2020 Clinical Trials, challenges, planning multinational H2020 Clinical Trials, ethical aspects and approval procedures and on Data Management in H2020 Clinical Trials. Special attention was paid to depict challenges in H2020 clinical trials and to provide best practices to handle those challenges. The training was highly demanded and not all registrants could be accepted to attend as the number of seats was limited to 50. A total number of 56 participants from academia and industry registered, the actual number was 45.
In total, we trained 227 researchers and SMEs in 4 trainings.

The Seventh EDCTP Forum took place in Berlin, Germany from 30 June to 2 July 2014 under the theme: The Partnership journey: New horizon for better health. The Forum hosted 359 participants from more than 43 countries, mainly from Africa and Europe, including attendees from scientific and health care communities, policymakers, regulators, product development partners, research and health funding organisations and foundations, private sector alliances, government representatives and non-governmental organisations.
The conference programme consisted of 120 oral presentations on the three main poverty-related diseases HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria, and their interaction with other neglected infectious diseases, cross-cutting topics on health capacity development and networking, policy, ethics and regulatory affairs.
Fit for Health 2.0 was presented at the Forum in the form of an oral panel presentation and at a designated booth.

The Eighth EDCTP Forum took place in Lusaka, Zambia from 6 to 9 November 2016. The Forum was entitled ‘Defeating poverty-related and neglected infectious diseases in Africa: harnessing research for evidence-informed policies’ and aimed at providing a platform to discuss latest research findings, and share new ideas and best practices. The core issue addressed was the question of how to better use research results for policies that aim to defeat poverty-related infectious diseases in Africa. The programme featured lectures by leading scientists as well as specialized sessions and poster presentations. In addition to this, there were several workshops focusing on practical aspects of EDCTP funded research, including the two training sessions provided by Fit for Health 2.0. The programme was complemented by scientific symposia and a number of satellite meetings.
The two workshops organized by Fit for Health 2.0 took place on Monday, 7 November 2016 and Tuesday, 8 November 2016 and covered the following topics: “Applying for an EDCTP2 grant” (workshop 1) and “Grant agreement preparation with EDCTP2” (workshop 2). Main contents of the workshops were presented by Claudia Schacht and Julia Büch on behalf of the Fit for Health 2.0 project. The training sessions were attended by more than 100 people from different institutions and backgrounds (such as universities, research institutes, foundations, CROs), 54 participants on the first training day and 77 on the second.


Task 3.2 – Virtual trainings for project implementation of running FP7 Health- and IMI-projects and for key issues in H2020 health-related projects
Task leader: Partner no. 3, JUELICH

The “Webinar on the new Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI)” was held on 11 June 2014. The presentation was focused on what applicants can expect from the IMI scheme under Horizon 2020 and counted with the valuable collaboration of the IMI office. Hugh Laverty (IMI office) presented details on the transition from IMI to IMI2 and focused on the novelties for IMI2 applicants. Magali Poinot (IMI office) continued with the explanation of the participation rules, funding scheme and specific information on intellectual property rights. A total number of 108 participants registered for the virtual session. The real number of participants varied of 60-67 during the session.

The webinar “Clinical Trials for Horizon 2020 Projects” was held on 09 September 2014. The presentation was focused on framework conditions that apply when conducting Clinical Trials in Projects funded under the Societal Challenge 1 of Horizon 2020 as well as practical tips for the preparation of a SC1-Horizon 2020 proposal including Clinical Trials. Doris Bell (Health-NCP and NCP for SMEs Germany) explained the framework conditions, describing the most important rules and regulations. Claudia Schacht (EURICE) proceeded with a presentation on proposal preparation, giving an overview on practical details for proposal preparation and on implementation of clinical trials under Horizon 2020. A total number of 534 participants applied for the virtual session. The real number of participants during the session was 330.

The webinar “Clinical Trials for Horizon 2020 Projects” was held on 18 March 2015. Due to the enormous interest on our previous webinar on this subject this webinar was an updated version of the former webinar. Christiane Kummer (Juelich) presented framework conditions, describing the most important rules and regulations. Claudia Schacht (EURICE) explained how to prepare a proposal, giving an overview on practical details on implementation of clinical trials under Horizon 2020. A total number of 333 participants applied for the virtual session. The real number of participants during the session varied between 138 and 152.

The fourth webinar was held on 23 July 2015, with the title “European and Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership2 (EDCTP2)”. Claudia Schacht and Julia Büch (both EURICE) presented an overview about the background, the different types of grants, currently open calls, the proposal process, and explained differences to Horizon 2020. A total number of 152 participants applied for the virtual session. The real number of participants during the session was 64.

The fifth webinar was held on 05 August 2016, with the title “From the positive Evaluation Outcome to Contract Signature: Webinar on Grant Agreement Preparation in EDCTP2 projects”. Claudia Schacht and Julia Büch (both EURICE) presented an overview about the EDCTP2 and EDCTP2 funding, the Grant Agreement and the Consortium Agreement, and gave a detailed explanation of the Grant Agreement Preparation process in the EDCTP2. A total number of 97 participants applied for the virtual session. The real number of participants during the session was 24.

The sixth webinar was held on 2nd February 2017 with the title “Webinar on Legal and Financial Issues in Horizon 2020”. Bastian Raue (NCP for legal and financial aspects in Germany) led through legal and financial issues which are relevant for Horizon 2020 proposal submission, project management and reporting, focusing on important financial aspects. A total number of 456 participants applied for the virtual session. The real number of participants during the session was 257.

The seventh webinar was held on 2nd March 2017 with the title “Webinar on Data Management in Horizon 2020”. Björn Usadel (RWTH Aachen & Forschungszentrum Jülich, Germany) provided comprehensive information on issues related to data management, data management plan, availability of data and the open research data pilot. A total number of 404 participants applied for the virtual session. The real number of participants during the session was 217.

The eighth webinar was held on 4th April 2017 entitled “Webinar on clinical trials for Horizon 2020 projects”. Birte Kretschmer (EURICE) gave an overview on the aspects to be considered during proposal planning including clinical trials (e.g. consortium composition, budget issues, time planning) and writing (e.g. where to describe the study, introduction to ethical aspects) as well as project implementation. A total number of 475 participants applied for the virtual session. The real number of participants during the session was 212.

In total, we trained 1.323 researchers and SMEs via these webinars.
For 4 webinars with speakers from the Fit for Health 2.0 consortium (Webinar on Clinical Trials for Horizon 2020 Projects with 2 Mini-Clips; The European & Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP2); EDCTPII: From the positive Evaluation Outcome to Contract Signature: Webinar on Grant Agreement Preparation in EDCTP2 projects) , miniclips were recorded and put online.


Helping to exploit project results
We offered hands-on exploitation trainings and exploitation partnering events to SMEs and researchers to close the gap between new scientific knowledge and technology generated within European projects and actually creating a viable business opportunity in order to allow a successful translation of the project results into novel products and services.

SMEs and researchers were supported through 4 exploitation trainings, reaching 225 participants.
In 3 Exploitation Partnering events, 989 SMEs and researchers attended, participating in 4.274 bilateral meetings.


Task 4.1 – Exploitation trainings on knowledge transfer and innovation financing and management
Task leader: Partner no. 5, SEZ
The first Fit for Health 2.0 International Exploitation Training took place on 15-16 October 2014 in Stuttgart, Germany. The training had a strong focus on IPR-issues, with contributions on IP-management in EU funded collaborative research projects, offering hands-on examples, and one of the external experts focused on best practices for maximising the value of IP. Moreover, we provided input for business development issues, examples for licencing strategies and executions and showed a hands-on example, discussing this in the frame of a group work with the participants. We also provided some input on financing sources, showing financing trends, offering input for private financing and hands-on advice in Dos and Don’ts in raising money. In addition, a presentation dealt with the valuation of products, and a case study was done with all participants. For the training finally 46 registrations were recorded, and 39 participants including the speakers attended the training. The majority of the participants came from Germany and the neighbouring countries Austria, France and Switzerland.

The second international exploitation training took place on 07-08 May 2015 in Palermo, Italy. The training was jointly organised with the European IPR Helpdesk and the European Patent Office. Next to aspects covering business development opportunities in Health/Life Sciences presented by Morris Berrie (TTS) a strong focus in this training was given to explain how valuations of enterprises and products in the Life Sciences field are done (presented by Patrik Frei and Aitana Peire; both Venture Valuation). This was in addition demonstrated with a case study all participants could work on. The training also addressed the overall topic of how to create value through professional management and exploitation of IP – with a special focus on IP in the field of biotechnology (presented by Joerg Scherer; Eurice). In addition, a presentation about patents in the field of biotechnology given by Maria Giuseppina Covone-van Hees (European Patent Office) gave very detailed insight into this complex subject. The workshop attracted more than 100 registrations and 56 attendees participated at the training including the speakers. The majority of the participants originated from Italy.

The third international exploitation training took place on 11-12 May 2016 in Dublin, Ireland. The training was again organised together with the European IPR Helpdesk. Furthermore, we collaborated with Enterprise Ireland. The programme was slightly modified in comparison to the second training, as we managed to get Eugene Sweeney (Iambic Innovation Ltd) as expert for maximising impact in EU-funded projects. Mr. Sweeney therefore focused on how research exploitation in EU-funded projects could be managed, how patent information can be used for strategic intelligence, strategies and business models. Like for the second training Morris Berrie (TTS) presented aspects around business development opportunities in Health/Life Sciences and Aitana Peire (Venture Valuation) explained how valuations of enterprises and products in the Life Sciences field are done. Tom Carver (J A Kemp) finally presented an overview about the China IPR Helpdesk. The workshop attracted more than 100 registrations, in total, 76 participants attended the workshop. Most participants originated from Ireland.

The fourth training entitled „International Training for the Exploitation of EU Project Results with a Focus on IP Valuation in the Field of Health and Biotechnology” had successfully taken place at the 10th and 11th May 2017 in Prague, Czech Republic. The workshop had incorporated both elements in the exploitation process of results to be generated in EU projects as well as post project outcomes with a further focus on business development and valuation techniques. The workshop had been carried out in tight collaboration with the European IPR Helpdesk and in cooperation with the Enterprise Europe Network, IPR Helpdesk Ambassador scheme hosted this time by the Czech Academy of Sciences. The workshop attracted more than 70 registrations out of 18 countries. However, due to the space limitation, only 50 delegates have been approved, 54 persons attended.
In total, we trained 225 researchers and SMEs in these trainings.


Task 4.2 – Exploitation partnering events
Task leader: Partner no. 8, EKT/NHRF
The first Fit for Health 2.0 Exploitation Partnering event was organised on Tuesday 17 November 2015 & Wednesday 18 November 2015 at the MEDICA fair (Düsseldorf, Germany) in collaboration with ZENIT GmbH, together with the Healthcare Sector Group of the Enterprise Europe Network. The event aimed to assist enterprises, universities and research institutions in finding partners in Europe for product development, manufacturing and licensing agreements, joint ventures or other types of partnership. The event was open to research & innovation stakeholders (researchers, SMEs, start-ups, companies) willing to bring closer to the market the results of their private and/or publicly funded research. Experts from the Fit for Health 2.0 consortium (Ines Haberl as National Contact Point for SMEs; Hicham Abghay as innovation management expert; Joerg Scherer as expert on IPR issues) were available for face-to-face meetings with the organisations registering for the event. We attracted 305 participants from 32 countries with more than 1100 meetings taking place. SME Instrument beneficiaries (for the PHC-12 topic on diagnostic biomarker and devices) were identified as one of the target groups in close-to-the-market-type projects. Thus, a strategic collaboration was established with EASME in order to favor participation of these beneficiaries in the exploitation partnering event. Strategic collaborations were also established with DG Research & Innovation-HEALTH.
The first feedback of EASME has been extremely positive. The link of the SME instrument with the healthcare brokerage event at MEDICA has been considered a best practice and should be offered as one of the networking activities of phase 3 of the SME instrument.
Synergies with related projects and initiatives to maximize participations comprised the EEN ICT Sector Group, the EU IPR Helpdesk, the SC1 NCP Net 2.0 project, Idealist and the ENTENTE project (http://entente-health.eu) that is the EU Network of Knowledge Transfer in Health.

The second Fit for Health 2.0 Exploitation Partnering event was organised on 15 November 2016 at the MEDICA fair (Düsseldorf, Germany) in collaboration with ZENIT GmbH, together with the Healthcare Sector Group of the Enterprise Europe Network. Because of excellent experiences for the first event we kept our programme, developed in 2015.
We attracted 327 participants with meetings from 41 countries with about 1.124 meetings taking place. 9 SME Instrument beneficiaries participated and were involved in 44 meetings.
The third exploitation partnering event took place from 11-12 October 2017 in Turin, Italy. Cooperation with MEDICA like for the first 2 events was not possible, as MEDICA 2017 was held out of our project’s duration. Due to the target group we decided for “Meet in Italy for Life Sciences (MIT4LS2017)”, which is the main matchmaking event on topical issues, trends and innovations in life sciences, taking place in Italy. The event stretched over 3 intensive (net)-working days, during which business meetings, networking activities, pitching sessions, thematic workshops and, at the end, a convention on the life sciences key trends and innovation strategies took place.
MIT4LS2017 offered high visibility and opportunities for businesses and networking, creating dedicated fora for dialogue between national and international, public and private stakeholders, by networking research-driven innovation. Sectors involved were Biotechnologies, Medical devices, pharmaceuticals and nutraceuticals and ICT for Health.
The event covered a brokerage event, bilateral networking meetings and the Italian Healthcare Venture forum, thematic workshops and an International Conference. A Bootcamp session was held for innovative start-ups that undertook a mentorship course and participated in pitching sessions with investors. We had 357 participants (companies, researchers, investors) from 32 countries and 2.050 meetings organised. More than 200 persons registered to attend the 12 workshops during the two days of bilateral meetings. 87% of participants were involved in transnational meetings.


Promoting Success, knowledge dissemination and networking
We promoted our own Fit for Health 2.0 services and activities offered to SMEs and researchers in Europe and we offered on-line customized services, platforms, new media and support items. We also put successful SMEs and academia in the spotlight which are active in the Health sector and which are supported by the project, presenting them as “motivating examples”, and we ensured an optimal network with related EU projects and with key support networks for SMEs and multipliers.


Task 5.1 – Fit for Health 2.0 web presence and new media
Task leader: Partner no. 6, EuroTop

The website, online helpdesk, FAQ-section, document library
An appealing and user-friendly website was designed at the beginning of the project and is updated on a regular basis. It contained information on Horizon 2020, with particular focus on SME-related issues.
The website is available at www.fitforhealth.eu.
Online Helpdesk section (FAQ –section)
Considering the Helpdesk section, 691 questions asked by Fit for Health 2.0 website visitors have been treated and answered by the Fit for Health 2.0 partners Main categories of questions for which a detailed answer was published comprise Clinical Trials, General rules and conditions, Work Programmes, Calls and Topics, the SME-Instrument, Partner search strategy, IPR Issues, Definitions, Ethical Issues, Fast Track To Innovation, Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI), FP7 and other issues.

Orientation banner
As 3 projects financed by the Health directorate of the European Commission (Health2 Market, ENTENTE and Fit for Health 2.0) support SMEs’ needs, we offered visitors the access to the most appropriate support network.

LinkedIn-Profile
A LinkedIn profile has been created and is used to relay and initiate discussion with LinkedIn members who share interest in Fit for Health 2.0 services to access H2020 research funding and establish collaboration to exploit research results. The Fit for Health 2.0 group has currently 1.053 members.

Fit for Health 2.0 web App for mobile phones and tablets has been developed for networking activities during and after workshops and conferences. The mobile app is available on Apple store, Androïd playstore and Microsoft platform. The App allowed registrants to get all information of events in one click, and to get presented for networking at the event with a live conversation module. News and information could be pushed on terminal for supporting participants and provide all conference information material (presentations, Q&A, feedback forms, etc.). The mobile App has been used at 5 events (Exploitation trainings in Dublin in Prague, Strategy Trainings in Vienna and Berlin, Business Treff in Vienna).


Task 5.2 – Promotion of Fit for Health 2.0
Task leader: Partner no. 8, EKT/NHRF
Leaflets, posters and roll-ups
For all PR material, we developed a corporate image including graphic & visual parameters for the project. A high-quality ready-to-print Fit for Health 2.0 promotional leaflet that provided concise information on the services and activities offered by the project to SMEs and researchers had been developed. Promotional posters ensured high visibility of the Fit for Health 2.0 project & its activities and a roll-up to guaranteed optimum promotion of the project at all kinds of health-related events including those organised by the Fit for Health 2.0 consortium. A Fit for Health 2.0 presentation template was used in all kinds of presentations produced by the project.

International Press releases
International press releases - to be published at least twice per year - were prepared by Fit for Health 2.0 partners and their aim is to promote the project, its activities and events. 25 international press releases have been published through CORDIS by EKT/NHRF as well as through the IPR Helpdesk website, the Biotechgate database & newsletter, the forum of the Sector Group Healthcare of the Enterprise Europe Network and related EC-funded projects such as Health NCP Net 2.0 Health2Market & ENTENTE.


Task 5.3 – Fit for Health 2.0 support items
Task leader: Partner no. 4, EURICE
3 web-based tutorials have been prepared to support researchers and SMEs during the entire innovation cycle of a project, addressing newcomers to Horizon 2020 with first basic information to start with, applicants during their process of proposal preparation and coordinators and project managers for a smooth implementation of projects. They offer information at a glance, focusing on most important aspects to be considered in the particular stage of a project.

Fact sheets were providing much more details and hands-on information, including first experiences and lessons learned (e.g. for the SME-instrument) and therefore serve as perfect support material that can be used at the occasion of trainings and other events as well as for bilateral meetings with researchers and SMEs. Fact sheets on Marie Skłodowska Curie actions, the new SME instrument and on Clinical trials have been prepared.

Mini-Clips (short videos) were recorded as kind of teasers for some of our webinars, showing some first insights into a particular topic and serve as first information packages.
In total, 7 Mini-Clips have been generated for the following webinars:
Clinical Trials for Horizon 2020 Projects (with 2 Mini-Clips)
SME-instrument
Fast Track to Innovation
EDCTPII: The European & Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP2)
EDCTPII: From the positive Evaluation Outcome to Contract Signature: Webinar on Grant Agreement Preparation in EDCTP2 projects
How to maximize your impacts-section in Horizon 2020 projects

Cooperation and networking activities
The project was promoted by the consortium at 266 life sciences relevant events, reaching more than 25.500 SMEs, researchers and representatives from the scientific community.
Fit for Health 2.0 was promoted by the consortium partners at the occasion of conferences, trainings, information days, workshops and stakeholder meetings. SMEs, researchers and representatives from the scientific community could be informed about the services offered and the support given by this project via dedicated presentations and via distributing project flyers and support material to participants.


Task 5.4 – Promotion of SME success
Task leader: Partner no. 9, FMMC

Video no. 1 – Fit for Health 2.0 presentation and short success stories – 17.09.2015 Brussels (Belgium)
Link to the video: http://www.fitforhealth.eu/downloads/fit-health-20-presentation
Targeted SMEs included in the video: SMEs with experience in FP7 projects and/or Horizon 2020 projects
Theme: Experience of successful SMEs and description of Horizon 2020 Programme and of the Fit for Health 2.0 services

The video has been filmed on the occasion of the Fit for Health 2.0 Partnering Event on 17 September 2015, in Brussels (Belgium). CEOs/representatives of selected companies, in particular SMEs who presented themselves in the individual flash presentation sessions served as perfect source to select candidates for such a video.


Video no. 2 – The SME experience – benefits of participating in health-related projects – 07.07.2016 Brussels (Belgium)
Link to the video: https://www.fitforhealth.eu/downloads/strategic-approaches-successful-h2020-project-participation
This video emphasized on recommendations of successful SMEs for other that are aiming to participate in Horizon 2020. The purpose is to promote successful SMEs and their advice for other SMEs.
Targeted SMEs: SMEs with experience in FP7 projects and/or Horizon 2020 projects
Theme: Experiences in FP7 projects and how did SMEs benefit from the project (in terms of growth generation, networking, implication in other projects) + advices
The methodology for choosing the SMEs has been the following: analysing the list of participants to the Partnering event, choosing SMEs with results in FP7 and Horizon 2020, with good cooperation profiles in the b2match platform.
The video has been filmed on the occasion of the 2nd Fit for Health 2.0 Partnering event on the 7 July 2016, in Brussels (Belgium).

Video no. 3 – The strategic development of SMEs in Horizon 2020 – 12-13.10.2016 Vienna (Austria)
Link to the video: https://www.fitforhealth.eu/downloads/strategy-development-training-life-sciences-executives
The emphasis for this video has been on the strategic aspects of participating in a H2020 project.
Targeted SMEs: SMEs with experience in FP7 projects and/or Horizon 2020 projects, supported by the mentoring and coaching programme or potential candidates for the mentoring and coaching programme
Theme: Strategic development of the companies
Methodology for choosing the SMEs: 3 SMEs have been chosen from the list of companies that were participating in the Strategy training, the criteria being the implication in Horizon 2020 and/or FP7 projects, their visibility on the market (website) and collaboration with the Fit for Health 2.0 project.

Video no. 4 – The SME's successful support in Horizon 2020 – 10.-11.05.2017 Prague (Czech Republic)
Link to the video: https://www.fitforhealth.eu/downloads/smes-successful-support-horizon-2020
Targeted SMEs included in the video: SMEs from EU13 countries
Theme: Experience in participation of EU13 SMEs and the support that Fit for Health 2.0 has offered through the Strategy trainings and the Coaching and mentoring scheme

The video has been filmed on the occasion of the Fit for Health 2.0 Strategy training organized in Prague (The Czech Republic) on the 10th and 11th of May 2017. The scope of the video has been to present the “pulse” of the SMEs’ participation in EU13 and to present the Fit for Health 2.0 mentors and coaches’ opinion on involvement of SMEs in Horizon 2020 projects and their advice for future involvement. In this respect, 4 mentors and coaches have given their opinion on the implication of the SMEs in Horizon 2020, as a result of the mentoring and coaching scheme applied in Fit for Health 2.0 for 30 SMEs, taking into consideration: IP management, strategic approaches of SMEs (international markets for SMEs), venture valuation, market needs and a good business plan.


Task 5.5 – Cooperation and Networking with related initiatives
Task leader: Partner no. 1, FFG
Cooperation with Health-NCP-Net 2.0
Major cooperation activities with the Health-NCP-Net 2.0 focused on the joint organization of Horizon 2020 Partnering Days, which were connected to Open Information Days organised by the European Commission. In addition, Fit for Health 2.0 and the Health-NCP-Net 2.0 closely cooperated for promoting trainings, webinars and other support measures offered to researchers and SMEs, with special notes on their websites and regular information sent by the coordinators to their consortia. We jointly organized Clinical trials information day on March 15th 2017 in Brussels. In addition, both networks discussed about common future options for supporting the scientific community, after the end of Fit for Health 2.0 and how complementary expertise can be considered for this.

Cooperation with IDEAList / IDEAList 2.0
Major cooperation activities with this project were concentrated on Horizon 2020 Partnering Days, organised in 2015 and 2016. In 2016, IDEAList 2.0 was presented during the morning session (together with other support measures), thus giving a very good overview about which kind of support is offered by IDEAList 2.0 and demonstrating the overall cooperation of various networks. In addition, further information to participants was offered at a booth, including support material and the possibility for networking and discussing with experts.
Like for other NCP-projects, Fit for Health 2.0 and IDEAList 2.0 closely cooperated for promoting trainings, webinars and other support measures offered to researchers and SMEs, with special notes on their websites and regular information sent by the coordinators to their consortia.

Cooperation with IMI / IMI2.0
The new Fit for Health 2.0 matchmaking platform called “euMatch” has been presented to IMI representatives and advantages of these tools has been discussed. Like other support measures, IMI 2.0 was presented at the Horizon 2020 Partnering Day 2016 with a dedicated presentation in the morning session. In addition, regular updates about the development in IMI 2.0 in particular in terms of supporting SMEs were discussed with Gunnar Sandberg, member of the Fit for Health 2.0 Advisory Board. Moreover, topics of current IMI 2.0 Calls are published on the Fit for Health 2.0 website and included in the euMatch Database.

Meeting with EU about partner search tools’ features and definition of “best practices”
An analysis of the Partner search database needs with the view to see what possible services or support the Participant Portal could offer was carried out by DG R&I. A mapping exercise of existing services was carried out - IDEAList (maintained by the ICT NCPs), CORDIS, the IMI Partner Search tool and the Fit for Health 2.0 euMatch platform. A meeting was organized with representatives of these initiatives and Jacques Viseur (EuroTop) presented the features of the Fit for Health 2.0 platform. The objective was to evaluate possibilities for a more synergized partner search portal which in turn may help the Commission to evaluate the current best practices for partner search and matchmaking in H2020.

Cooperation with the European IPR Helpdesk
Partner no. 4, Eurice, is one of the partners of the European IPR Helpdesk, and ensured optimal cooperation with this network. Exploitation trainings were jointly organized in Palermo, Dublin and Prague. Strategy trainings, taking place in Vienna and Berlin were also jointly organised by both networks. A special webinar series “IP challenges in Life Sciences” was organized by the European IPR Helpdesk in 2016, with a focus on Patent drafting in the field of Life Science, Handling and Management of IP portfolios with a focus on Life Science and Successful contractual IP Management of Life Science Projects and Commercialisation. These Webinars were promoted on the Fit for Health 2.0 website.

Cooperation with the Enterprise Europe Network
Close cooperation activities with the Enterprise Europe Network took place at the occasion of joint Brokerage events, organised at MEDICA 2015 and MEDICA 2016 in Duesseldorf, Germany and at a joint Brokerage event, organised at “Meet in Italy for Life Sciences”, in Turin, Italy, in 2017 with a focus on exploitation of project results.
In addition, the “International Training for the Exploitation of EU Project Results with a Focus on IP Valuation in the Field of Health and Biotechnology” was jointly organized on 10th and 11th May 2017 in Prague, Czech Republic.

Net4Society
Cooperation with the network of National Contact Points for the Societal Challenge 6 ("Europe in a changing world: inclusive, innovative and reflective societies") in Horizon 2020 had been established, ensuring to cover socio-economic aspects that could be of relevance for our main target group of researchers and SMEs. Activities were focusing on mutual promotion activities on websites, and like other support measures the project has been presented at the Horizon 2020 Partnering Day in Brussels 2016.

EDCTP-II
For our webinars on EDCTP-II we were in close contact with the EDCTP-colleagues and appreciated exchange of knowledge, discussing on details about those trainings. Moreover, the Eighth Forum of the European & Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP) took place in Lusaka, Zambia in 2016, with 2 training sessions provided by Fit for Health 2.0.

New Coordination and Support Actions & EU-funded projects

Cooperation with Health-2-Market and ENTENTE
A joint dissemination strategy and guidelines between the 2 related projects and Fit for Health 2.0 had been prepared, aiming to maximize synergies between the projects, resulting in a stronger and more coherent approach on dissemination activities. Based on those guidelines, promotion potential for the 3 individual projects should be increased.
Fit for Health 2.0 contributed to the training seminar «Marketing of innovative products in Health/ Life Sciences», taking place in Berlin, Germany, in 2014, and the final conference organised by Health-2-Market on 1 July 2015 in Brussels, entitled “Tools to valorize research: 1 day to follow the road from research to market!”. Fit for Health 2.0 was also represented at the TTS Global Initiative Summit in Barcelona, Spain, on 29-30 April 2015. The summit was combined with the final conference of ENTENTE showing best practises in healthcare technology transfer and innovation.

UTILE
The project has its focus on establishing an EU-Health innovation marketplace, building a valorization platform for FP7 Health and H2020 SC1 projects. One of the Fit for Health 2.0 consortium members (TTS) is also part of the UTILE consortium and served as link between the 2 projects. The opportunity for a joint brokerage event on exploitation of project results had been discussed. As UTILE just started in January 2017 and Fit for Health 2.0 had to organize such an event in October 2017 at the very latest it was unlikely that assessments to be conducted by UTILE were available in due time to be used for such a joint event. We therefore decided to not go for such a common event but to focus on mutual promotion activities on websites.

ACCESS4SMEs
This project represents the network for National Contact Points for Innovation, and the coordinator of Fit for Health 2.0 as SME-NCP serves as link between the two networks. Cooperation with this network has been established, ensuring to reach our target group of high-tech, research intensive SMEs in the Life Sciences sector, offering optimal access to our support measures, in particular those that specifically target this group. Activities are focusing on mutual promotion activities on websites, like for the “International Training for the Exploitation of EU Project Results with a Focus on IP Valuation in the Field of Health and Biotechnology” organized on 10th and 11th May 2017 in Prague, Czech Republic, the international strategy training, taking place on 12th October 2017 in Berlin, Germany and the “Meet in Italy for Life Sciences” Partnering event, taking place on 11-13 October 2017 in Turin, Italy, with a focus on exploitation of project results.

PERMIDES
PERMIDES represents an EU-funded project entitled “Personalised Medicine Innovation through Digital Enterprise Solution”. It has been funded under the Work Programme “Innovation in SMEs” for the topic INNOSUP-1-2015 for cluster facilitated projects.
It is the aim of PERMIDES to strengthen the competitiveness and foster the innovation potential of Personalized Medicine as an Emerging Industry in Europe by providing key solutions for the reconfiguration of the biopharmaceutical value chain by establishing connections between biopharmaceutical SMEs and the ICT/software sector as an enabler of innovation in many industries.
Collaboration activities are focusing on mutual promotion activities on websites and on dedicated invitation of our target group to events organized by PERMIDES.


Conclusions and final remarks
Is Fit for Health 2.0 a success story?
Considering the minimum performance objectives defined in the description of work the obtained results from the various activities can be assessed as very successful!
Almost all objectives could be reached and many of them surpassed!
The minimum performance objectives were defined as follows:

The following numbers impressively show that the project substantially contributed to the support of SMEs and researchers operating in the Health-related sector in Horizon 2020:
• We trained more than 3.300 researchers and SMEs in on-site trainings and webinars
• We organized partnering events for 1.430 participants with 5.570 bilateral meetings
• Our trainers supported 30 high-tech, research intensive SMEs via our mentoring & coaching support programme
• Our Fit for Health 2.0 platform had close to 15.000 registered users
• 4.377 expertise profiles (631 for SMEs) and partner searches were published on our Fit for Health 2.0 database
• Around 548 collaborations were generated through our platform between SMEs and research organisations for participation in H2020 Calls
• We published 25 press releases
• We provided 22 Financing summaries
• We recorded 4 videos
• We published 7 mini-clips of our webinars
• 1.053 members joined our LinkedIn Group
• At the occasion of 266 Life Sciences events we informed 25.500 researchers and SMEs
Potential Impact:
I) Potential Impact
Supporting the increase of participation of industry, especially high-tech SMEs in EU-funded health research
The central aim of EU R&D Framework Programmes has always been to enhance the global competitiveness of European industry and particularly SMEs as main drivers of European economy. The idea is that substantial EU co-funding for collaborative R&D projects provides SMEs and industry with access to fresh knowledge generated within academia, resulting in a competitive advantage of these enterprises. However, participation of SMEs and industry in EU projects has a track record of being hampered by EU funding procedures, as they are experienced or perceived as too cumbersome by many time-conscious companies. Horizon 2020 is the first Framework Programme, covering both, basic research and close-to-market innovation. With a total budget of about € 77 billion, 20% are awarded under Horizon 2020 Societal Challenges (SCs) and Leadership in Enabling and Industrial Technologies (LEITs) to SMEs. By all accounts, Horizon 2020 is not a self-explanatory programme in spite of important simplification measures. To identify the right funding opportunities and networks in time and to develop an effective “funding strategy”, SMEs and industry as well as researchers require easy access to “navigation support” for H2020. Fit for Health 2.0 precisely addressed these needs.

Enhancing Innovation Union and Lisbon objectives for contributing to technological evolution, innovation, competitiveness of European industry, economic growth and employment
The Europe 2020 strategy is the EU's agenda for growth and jobs for the current decade. It emphasises smart, sustainable and inclusive growth as a way to overcome the structural weaknesses in Europe's economy, improve its competitiveness and productivity and underpin a sustainable social market economy. One of the main goals of the Innovation Union flagship is to decisively speed up the process of “bringing ideas to market” in Europe by overcoming long-standing “barriers for entrepreneurs”, such as insufficient access to risk financing and the deadlock in negotiations over a Community Patent. By these and other measures, the Innovation Union should in particular enhance the number of fast-growing, research intensive SMEs. Their importance is also underlined by the Innovation Scoreboard report 2011, which states that EU companies are largely present in the “medium-high R&D intensity sectors”, whereas US companies dominate the “high R&D intensity sector”. This gap between the US and Europe has become more pronounced in the last decade. Recently, the Innovation Scoreboard report 2017 emphasized that though the EU is catching up with the United States, it is losing ground vis-à-vis South Korea and Japan.
Overall, the Commission aims at a “strategic, inclusive and business-oriented research and innovation policy”. As the key instrument of the Innovation Union, the H2020 architecture mirrors this holistic approach towards innovation. Accordingly, Fit for Health 2.0 provided much needed overview on European research and innovation opportunities, and actively promoted a more strategic use of EU funding and support instruments in particular by high tech, research intensive SMEs. Crucially, the Fit for Health 2.0 consortium bundles the comprehensive expertise and practical experience necessary to really add value in particular for SMEs, including a thorough understanding of the biotech/healthcare market, business and strategy evaluation, and of what Venture Capitalists and corporate investors look for in practice. As an example, this was reflected by regular information to SMEs on all financing rounds and updated lists of the top 20 investors in the health-related sector in Europe.

Steps needed to bring about the impact
A main prerequisite for achieving optimal impact of the services offered by Fit for Health 2.0 was the high visibility and demand for the latter by the target groups like researchers and high-tech research intensive SMEs.
Moreover, as opposed to services offered by many consultancy agencies to guide SMEs through the funding “jungle”, the whole set of measures provided by Fit for Health 2.0 was free of charge, thereby avoiding any financial barriers limiting the demand for assistance by Fit for Health 2.0.
Importantly, Fit for Health 2.0 services did not only cover all the phases of a project life cycle - ranging from support to newcomers to targeted services for applicants and project participants. The project also addressed the entire innovation cycle with a holistic and sustainable approach of SMEs towards participation in EU projects, e.g. by providing SMEs with tools and practical knowledge in developing and improving short-, mid- and long term business and funding strategies.
As a key step for generating innovation out of EU project results, the exploitation trainings have been designed to give hands-on advice on knowledge transfer, innovation financing sources, technology transfer mechanisms and tools, IPR-management and business model creation. Exploitation partnering days organized together with the Enterprise Europe Network brought together inventors and investors. This enabled our target group to figure out the best way to manage collaborations and to ensure efficient translation of project results, contributing to the Innovation Union objectives.

The need for a European approach
The European Research Area (ERA) has to engage with a global agenda on health research and practice, addressing critical issues in global health and facilitating collaboration between European and Non-European researchers and industry. Health is central in people's lives and needs to be supported by effective policies and actions in Member States, at EC level and at global level. Member States have the main responsibility for health policy and provision of healthcare to European citizens. The EC's role is not to mirror or duplicate their work. However, there are areas where Member States cannot act alone effectively and where cooperative action at Community level is indispensable. To carry out this role, cross-sectoral work is required, as well as EU funding schemes supporting transnational cooperation in Health. In this context, Fit for Health 2.0 clearly contributed to the aims of the “Innovation Union”, namely the implementation of a comprehensive European innovation strategy on EU, national and regional level. Through the direct involvement in and cooperation with different regional and national networks and technology clusters, Fit for Health 2.0 supported regional authorities in tapping the innovation potential of regional SMEs by acting on a transnational level.

Synergies with other European initiatives
Fit for Health 2.0 used optimal synergies with other European Initiatives by a number of means, closely collaborating with a Stakeholder Group of related EU projects, key innovation networks, biotech-clusters and -associations, and other organizations acting in the health-related sector. The consortium combined national, regional and European funding system expertise and support networks and provided direct access to stakeholders from private capital and VC/corporate venture.

Synergies had been identified for:

NCP-Networks

Health-NCP-Net 2.0
Major cooperation activities with the Health-NCP-Net 2.0 focused on the joint organization of Horizon 2020 Partnering Days. We jointly organized a Clinical trials information day. In addition, Fit for Health 2.0 and the Health-NCP-Net 2.0 closely cooperated for promoting trainings, webinars and other support measures offered to researchers and SMEs, with special notes on their websites and regular information sent by the coordinators to their consortia.

Cooperation with IDEAList / IDEAList 2.0
Major cooperation activities were concentrated on Horizon 2020 Partnering Days, organised in 2015 and 2016. Like for other NCP-projects, Fit for Health 2.0 and IDEAList 2.0 closely cooperated for promoting trainings, webinars and other support measures offered to researchers and SMEs, with special notes on their websites and regular information sent by the coordinators to their consortia.

Net4Society
Cooperation with the network of NCPS for SC6 ("Europe in a changing world: inclusive, innovative and reflective societies") in Horizon 2020 had been established, ensuring to cover socio-economic aspects that could be of relevance for our main target group of researchers and SMEs. Activities were focusing on mutual promotion activities on websites, and like other support measures the project has been presented at the Horizon 2020 Partnering Day in Brussels 2016.

ACCESS4SMEs
This project represents the network for NCPs for Innovation, and the coordinator of Fit for Health 2.0 as SME-NCP serves as link between the two networks. Cooperation with this network had been established, ensuring to reach our target group of high-tech, research intensive SMEs in the Life Sciences sector, offering optimal access to our support measures, in particular those that specifically target this group. Activities are focusing on mutual promotion activities on websites for various training activities.


Related initiatives

Cooperation with the European IPR Helpdesk
Partner no. 4, Eurice, is one of the partners of the European IPR Helpdesk, and ensured optimal cooperation with this network. Exploitation trainings were jointly organized in Palermo, Dublin and Prague. Strategy trainings, taking place in Vienna and Berlin were also jointly organised by both networks. A special webinar series “IP challenges in Life Sciences” was organized by the European IPR Helpdesk in November 2016, with a focus on Patent drafting in the field of Life Science, Handling and Management of IP portfolios with a focus on Life Science and Successful contractual IP Management of Life Science Projects and Commercialisation. These Webinars were promoted on the Fit for Health 2.0 website.

Cooperation with the Enterprise Europe Network
Close cooperation activities with the Enterprise Europe Network took place at the occasion of joint Brokerage events, organised at MEDICA 2015 and MEDICA 2016 in Duesseldorf, Germany and at a joint Brokerage event, organised at “Meet in Italy for Life Sciences”, in Turin, Italy, in 2017 with a focus on exploitation of project results. An Exploitation training has been jointly organized in Prague, Czech Republic.

Cooperation with IMI / IMI2.0
The new Fit for Health 2.0 matchmaking platform called “euMatch” has been presented to IMI representatives and advantages of these tools has been discussed. Like other support measures, IMI 2.0 was presented at the Horizon 2020 Partnering Day 2016 with a dedicated presentation in the morning session. In addition, regular updates about the development in IMI 2.0 in particular in terms of supporting SMEs were discussed with Gunnar Sandberg, member of the Fit for Health 2.0 Advisory Board. Moreover, topics of current IMI 2.0 Calls were published on the Fit for Health 2.0 website and included in the euMatch Database.

EDCTP-II
For our webinars on EDCTP-II we were in close contact with the EDCTP-colleagues and appreciated exchange of knowledge, discussing on details about those trainings. Moreover, the Eighth Forum of the European & Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP) took place in Lusaka, Zambia in 2016, with two training sessions provided by Fit for Health 2.0.

Related EU-funded Support Actions

Health-2-Market and ENTENTE
A joint dissemination strategy and guidelines between the two related projects and Fit for Health 2.0 had been prepared, aiming to maximize synergies between the projects, resulting in a stronger and more coherent approach on dissemination activities.
Fit for Health 2.0 contributed to the training seminar and to the final conference organised by Health-2-Market. Fit for Health 2.0 was also represented at the TTS Global Initiative Summit in Barcelona, combined with the final conference of ENTENTE showing best practises in healthcare technology transfer and innovation.

UTILE
The project has its focus on establishing an EU-Health innovation marketplace, building a valorisation platform for FP7 Health and H2020 SC1 projects. One of the Fit for Health 2.0 consortium members (TTS) is also part of the UTILE consortium and served as link between the 2 projects. The collaboration focus was on mutual promotion activities on websites.

PERMIDES
PERMIDES represents an EU-funded project entitled “Personalised Medicine Innovation through Digital Enterprise Solution”, funded under the Work Programme “Innovation in SMEs” for the topic INNOSUP-1-2015 for cluster facilitated projects.
PERMIDES aims to strengthen the competitiveness and foster the innovation potential of Personalized Medicine as an Emerging Industry in Europe by providing key solutions for the reconfiguration of the biopharmaceutical value chain by establishing connections between biopharmaceutical SMEs and the ICT/software sector as an enabler of innovation in many industries. Collaboration activities are focusing on mutual promotion activities on websites and on dedicated invitation of our target group to events organized by PERMIDES.

European bioclusters and SME associations:
• BioCAT and Barcelona Activa: collaboration for strategy training in Barcelona
• Medicon Valley Alliance and ScanBalt Bioregion: collaboration for strategy training in Copenhagen
• LISAvienna: collaboration for strategy training in Vienna
• Berlin Partner: collaboration for strategy training in Berlin
• Enterprise Ireland: collaboration for exploitation training in Dublin
• Technology Centre CAS: collaboration for exploitation training in Prague

Other related institutions:
• European Patent Office: collaboration for exploitation training in Palermo

Based on our objectives, Fit for Health 2.0 has defined 5 “Key performance indicators”, reflecting the impact of this support measure.
1) In 24 different on-site trainings up to 1.700 participants will be trained
Fit for Health 2.0 organised 20 on-site trainings: based on the feedback of the EC we combined 4 workshops on clinical trials management with our trainings for project implementation, making sure to providing our support to all new Coordinators and to reaching our target group in the most efficient way. We thus reached our target of 24 on-site trainings. The trans-national trainings were organised in 13 different European countries, trying a geographical coverage of many European regions.
Results:
For 8 trainings we exceeded the number of participants to be attracted (all applicant trainings – except one organised in London); In the workshops for EDCTP projects, exploitation trainings (except training in Stuttgart, Germany) and for 12 trainings less participants than calculated attended the events.
For our 2 Horizon 2020 Starting trainings, we almost reached our goal of 200 participants in total, with 180 attendees and 238 registrations.
In total, 135 SMEs attended our Strategy trainings (183 registered and 200 planned).
For 4 of our applicant trainings, aiming to reach 200 attendees in total, we exceeded the number of participants with 273 participants and 445 registrations. Just for one training we had many last minute cancellations (London, shortly after terror attacks in Paris, with severe limitations to coming to London).
Our trainings for contract negotiations and project management were initially planned for up to 150 persons for each training, which is depending on the number of new coordinators in H2020-related Health Calls. Because of much lesser amount of topics (and consequently lesser amount of coordinators) the number of participants was much lower than initially planned (227, with 263 registrations). Workshops on Clinical trials, initially planned in addition to the ones for contract negotiations and project management were combined with those (based on feedback of the Commission), thus reducing again our initial goals. We reached 131 participants for our Workshops for EDCTP projects (100 planned). 225 participants (316 registrations) were counted for our 4 exploitation trainings, exceeding our goal of 200 for 4 trainings.

Conclusions:
Though we reached with 1.171 participants only 68,9% of our our initial target (1.700) we need to emphasize that the number of registered persons was higher with 1.445.
Moreover, we need to consider differences for the individual training modules, and explanations are provided above.

2) In 12 different virtual trainings (webinars) up to 960 participants will be trained
Results:
2.153 participants attended our 12 different webinars! We exceeded our initial aim of 960 by far, and looking at the number of registered persons the total amount of researchers and SMEs planned to attend was even higher with 4.125.
Conclusions:
Webinars were offered as accompanying and complementary trainings to the on-site trainings and had many attractive advantages. They allowed addressing specific issues that couldn’t be covered in on-site trainings, offered the chance of support also for those who were not able to participate on-site, had almost no limit in number of participants. Participants could raise questions that were published on our FAQ-section. Importantly, our webinars were recorded, and some of them in addition condensed to 10-12min short mini-clips afterwards and published on our website.

3) The 6 partnering events will involve at least 1.200 participants
Results:
We have organised only 5 partnering events in total (see explanation below), but we exceeded our goal of 1.200 with 1.430 participants, and 5.569 bilateral meetings took place!

Conclusions:
Based on our Technical Annex, we have planned 3 Horizon 2020-partnering events and 3 exploitation partnering events each, with a different focus. H2020-Partnering events provided high quality platforms for face-to-face meetings between coordinators of H2020 health-related proposals and potential project partners. In comparison to the H2020-partnerings, where consortia are built for upcoming calls exploitation partnering events offered SMEs and researchers a platform to present and negotiate exploitation for their Health project results.
It has to be emphasized that the third (and last) H2020 Partnering event has been cancelled by European Commission without substitution. We planned to organise this event again in cooperation with the Health-NCP-Net 2.0 like for the first two times, focussing on the Work Programmes 2018-2020. Because of the expected publication of the Call not before October 2017 and in particular because of a planned Open Info Day in December 2017 (so far, those days were used to get connected to), taking place after the project end of Fit for Health 2.0 Fit for Health 2.0 did not have the possibility to organise the event as it would have taken place after the contract had ended. This is in agreement with the EC.


4) 30 SMEs will participate in the mentoring & coaching scheme
Results:
We have supported 30 European SMEs via this support scheme, thus reaching our aim.
Conclusions:
Mentoring and coaching was a new support service offered by Fit for Health 2.0 for the very first time, it provided personalized support through all phases of the innovation cycle. It was restricted to high technology, research-intensive SMEs offering tailor-made support. Supported companies were located in 12 European countries, thus ensuring a broad geografical coverage and represented different sectors like like biotech, medtech, pharma, diagnostics and e-health.

5) 1000 new SMEs will register in the Fit for Health 2.0 database
Results:
Since the relaunch of our Fit for Health 2.0 database in November 2013, 4.375 SMEs registered on the Fit for Health 2.0 portal, and the current number of SMEs with registered expertise profiles is 613. As an important feature, the database was kept up-to-date and outdated expertise profiles were removed regularly. Briefly, we were in continuous contact with companies who published expertise profiles, and in case that these profiles were not revised (e.g. after the launch of a new work programme) or outdated we unpublished them. Though this in turn resulted in lower numbers of SMEs than initially expeted, this procedure allowed us to guarantee highest quality of profiles, one of the key feature of our database!
Conclusions:
Fit for Health 2.0 addressed newcomers and Framework-programme experienced SMEs and academia across the entire health-related sector with a balanced set of awareness raising, trainings, mentoring and coaching measures.
High-tech, research intensive SMEs were an important target group of the project, and this group was particularly assisted in developing a strategic approach towards funding, R&D cooperation and results exploitation that bolsters their business strategy.
A central pillar was the support of Fit for Health 2.0 for collaboration and enhanced “cross-cultural understanding” between SMEs and academia.
Altogether, Fit for Health 2.0 involved 1.171 SMEs, cluster and academia representatives in on-site trainings, ensuring adequate geographical coverage across Europe, and 2.153 participants via virtual trainings (webinars). On-site partnering events brought together 1.430 participants.
Information and training materials were widely disseminated via the Fit for Health 2.0 portal, the LinkedIn profile and a web application, as well as the Fit for Health 2.0 Stakeholder Group of complementary support structures and initiatives, ensuring a strong multiplier effect.

II) Socio-Economic impact and wider societal implications
Industry participation in the framework programmes has increased during the past years, mostly because of SME-specific measures. Still, SMEs need support for getting involved in collaborative projects that bring their research to commercially exploitable innovative products and services, thus contributing to sustainable socio-economic value for the European citizens. Despite simplification measures in Horizon 2020, the funding landscape remains diverse and complex, SMEs need targeted support and a strategic orientation to make optimal use of the funding opportunities available to them. In an increasingly competitive environment in European healthcare innovation, the shift from an ad-hoc participation to a long-lasting and sustainable involvement in collaborative projects is pivotal for the growth of innovative SMEs. Fit for Health 2.0 therefore actively promoted and supported the successful participation of industry, esp. European research performing SMEs, in EU-funded research and stimulate business and research cooperation between industry and academia in the health field.
Enhanced participation of SMEs in EU funded health research is essential, but by no means sufficient for a success of Horizon 2020. Only if the results of this research are rapidly transformed into innovative, attractive products and services that meet market and societal demands, the European health sector can gain a competitive advantage and support an efficient healthcare system. Improving the process and framework conditions for results exploitation is thus a key element of the EU 2020 Strategy and its “Innovation Union” flagship. Fit for Health 2.0 actively supported SMEs in this process by targeted training and coaching measures.

III) Dissemination activities and exploitation of results
Fit for Health 2.0 provided a well-sorted spectrum of support services aimed at enhancing the participation of European SMEs in EU-funded health research. We ensured high awareness of our services amongst the European research community, with a multitude of routes and measures for wide dissemination and exploitation of project results.
The Fit for Health 2.0 web presence and use of new media
Our user-friendly website contained updated information on H2020, with particular focus on SME-related issues. It provided straightforward access to key Fit for Health 2.0 services, e.g. the events and the matchmaking facility. We presented a detailed download section, supporting SMEs and researchers in getting acquainted with H2020, including links to related projects, initiatives and other support networks like e.g. the IPR Helpdesk. Moreover, users could send questions to the Fit for Health 2.0 consortium electronically via a contact form to the Fit for Health 2.0 helpdesk that were summarized in our FAQ-section. About 691 questions asked by Fit for Health 2.0 website visitors have been treated and answered by our consortium partners.
We counted 110.891 visits in overall on our website. 21.017 visits were returning visits.
We developed a mobile web app for smartphones and tablets that were used at the occasion of different trainings and partnering events, allowing dynamic interaction with the healthcare research community, and providing access to experts of the project and training materials through the Fit for Health 2.0 online platform. Fit for Health 2.0 promoted its services by a LinkedIn profile. Via this profile news, announcements and links to documents were rapidly disseminated to a wide audience of users. Since its creation in November 2013, the Fit for Health 2.0 group has collected 1.053 members.
PR material and international press releases and support items
Our Fit for Health 2.0 project leaflet gave an overview about our services offered to SMEs and academia. A roll-up served to promote the project during all on-site events like trainings and partnering events as well as at the occasion of events and conferences relevant to SMEs in the health-related sector, like MEDICA or TTS Europe, to ensure high visibility of the project.
25 international press releases were published frequently via CORDIS News, CORDIS Wire and/or comparable other relevant distribution channels.
In addition, the project partners being involved in related networks (e.g. the EEN or NCP-Networks) or related EC-funded projects (e.g. the IPR Helpdesk, Health2Market, ENTENTE etc.) promoted the project and services offered regularly at the occasion of fairs and conferences in Europe and the US. Fit for Health 2.0 was promoted 266 times by the consortium partners at the occasion of conferences, trainings, information days, workshops and stakeholder meetings. Thus, more than 25.500 SMEs, researchers and representatives from the scientific community could be informed about the services offered and the support given by this project via dedicated presentations and via distributing project flyers and support material to participants.

3 Fact sheets for Marie Marie Skłodowska Curie actions, the SME Instrument and Clinical Trials addressed various elements of H2020, offering comprehensive information on the specific topics. They were distributed at the occasion of Fit for Health 2.0 events and conferences relevant to the Health sector.
As a specific information item for SMEs, we published 22 times a summary of all financing rounds in Europe every two months through BiotechGate and the Fit for Health 2.0 website, providing a top 20 list of investors investing in European health-related SMEs (twice per year), based on the continuous tracking of investments into European SMEs performed by the project.
Further to that we offered 3 web-based tutorials for Project Idea & Initial Preparations, Proposal Preparation, Submission & Evaluation and for Grant Preparation & Project Management, giving a quick tool for clients interested in getting a comprehensive overview about the opportunities in H2020.
7 Webinars were recorded and condensed into short video clips of 10-12min, which are available for download at the project website.
Promotion of SME success: Success story videos
Short videos of successful SMEs have been very well received, providing an excellent means to communicate the benefit of EU funded research from “SME to SME”. Fit for Health 2.0 put a particular emphasis on the experience of SME-academia cooperation from both perspectives, i.e. SME and researchers, thus motivating SMEs and academia, stemming from different “research cultures”, to work together in H2020.
Recorded videos reflected the support offered at the occasion of different events, like our partnering days, strategy trainings and mentoring and coaching support, offering test pitching to SMEs, training their performances before meeting investors.
The videos were published on YouTube and displayed on the Fit for Health 2.0 website, offering the selected SMEs excellent promotion for their research and marketable results.
List of Websites:
https://www.fitforhealth.eu/