UK NanoKTN supports EC's €1.8bn investment in ICT research

9 January 2009

The Nanotechnology Knowledge Transfer Network (NanoKTN), one of the UK’s primary knowledge-based networks for Micro and Nanotechnologies, has announced its support for the €1.8bn that has been made available by the European Commission, through their Information Communications Technology (ICT) fund.

There are scheduled to be two large funding calls (4th and 5th calls for proposals) over two years that have been put in place to support the nanotechnology and microtechnology markets and encourage the development of research and production in this area. UK organisations are expected to directly claim over €100m for micro and nanotechnology enabled research and development.

The European Commission has launched this funding to improve the competitiveness of European Industry and to ensure Europe continues to be a key player in shaping future developments in ICT. The objective of the ICT initiative is to help drive and stimulate product service and process innovation through ICT use and value creation in Europe. By doing this, the European Commission aims to ensure that ICT progress is rapidly transformed into benefits for Europe’s citizens, businesses, industry and governments.

“The European Commission is pleased to be supporting research projects with participants from different countries and we are looking forward to seeing how we can develop new knowledge, technology and products,” explains the European Commission Framework 7’s UK National Contact Point for ICT, Peter Walters.

“New breakthroughs in ICT will continue to develop over the next decade and bring ever-more wide ranging applications that will continue to drive growth and innovation and ensure sustainability in our economies and societies. We need to ensure Europe is a central point for this development and hope the funding will encourage this.”

The ICT Theme is divided into a number of different challenges covering varying areas of interest. Challenge 3 covers Components, Systems and Engineering with an estimated allocation of €180m for 2009 and €195m for 2010.

Challenge 5 focuses on sustainable and personalised healthcare and has been allocated €95m for 2009, and Future and Emerging Technologies that has been provided with €171m for 2009 and 2010.

It is expected that the UK will capture at least 15% of this sizeable amount of funding. Challenges 3 and 5 are open now for proposals and close on April 1st 2009. The 2010 calls will be opening in July 2009.

The NanoKTN is dedicated to helping its members understand how to write a successful proposal and identify suitable partnerships for collaborative work. Through updates, e-bulletins, seminars and public presentations, the NanoKTN aims to assist its members and create connections between research, academics and manufacturers.

“By encouraging businesses to work with academic and research institutions on new research and development, we hope to be able to develop successful new products and services,” says Dr Alec Reader, Director of the NanoKTN. “This funding made available by the European Commission will help the UK play a key part in ICT research and innovation in Europe. We look forward to seeing what new ideas and products are proposed and developed.”

ICT Call Number Four has a budget of €810m and opened on November 19th and closes on April 1st 2009.

Further information

European Commission ICT project proposal call 4 (closes 1 April 2009)

EC Seventh Research Framework Programme (FP7) page on the CORDIS website for Call 4 project submission details  (URL too long to display).

Information is also available at:

Research areas covered are:

  • Challenge 1 : Pervasive and trustworthy network and service infrastructures
  • Challenge 2 : Cognitive systems, interaction, robotics
  • Challenge 3 : Components, systems, engineering
  • Challenge 5 : Towards sustainable and personalised healthcare
  • Challenge 6 : ICT for mobility, environmental stability and energy efficiency
  • Challenge 7 : ICT for independent living , inclusion and governance

The call also promotes research in three new areas of Future and Emerging Technologies:

  • Concurrent tera-device computing
  • Quantum information foundations and technologies
  • Biochemistry-based information technology

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