The I3 Instrument is a new Cohesion Policy tool focusing on existing interregional partnerships that emerged around concrete smart specialisation strategies.
Stronger strategic interregional cooperation and sustainable connections between regional ecosystems are vital to accelerate market uptake of research results and stimulate innovation. By combining the bottom up approach of smart specialisation strategies with investment support in key European priorities – concretely green and digital transition and smart manufacturing – the Instrument targets investments to accelerate market uptake and scale-up in high technology readiness levels (TRL 6 at least).
The European Innovation Council and SMEs Executive Agency (EISMEA) will organise an informative online webinar, on 9 December, to learn more about the Interregional Innovation Investment (I3) Instrument calls opened for the 2021-2022 period.
The calls are organised under two strands:
Strand 1 - Financial and advisory support for investments in interregional innovation projects
Strand 1 targets mature partnerships to help them accelerate market uptake and scale-up of innovative solutions in shared smart specialisation priority areas, as well as to develop a portfolio of investment projects. Partnerships should be able to build on existing assets such as cluster initiatives supported by the Commission, participation in Horizon 2020 and, where applicable, Knowledge and Innovation Communities.
Strand 2a - Financial and advisory support to the development of value chains in less developed regions
Strand 2a focuses on increasing the capacity of regional innovation ecosystems in less developed regions to participate in global value chains, as well as the capacity to participate in partnerships with other regions. This strand has a strong cohesion dimension and focuses on creating linkages between less developed regions with those regions where such regional innovation capacity is more advanced. It supports both foreign direct investment-driven value chains and other emerging sectors.
The calls are open for submissions and the application deadlines are:
- 2021 cut-off date: 1 February 2022, Strand 1 budget: EUR 39 795 300 , Strand 2a budget: EUR 36 005 271
- 2022 cut-off date: 18 October 2022, Strand 1 budget: EUR 36 763 277, Strand 2a budget: EUR 32 897 448