EIT launches EUR 12 million call to boost innovation and reskilling in European higher education

8 November 2022 – Budapest, Hungary – The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) and coordinator EIT RawMaterials are launching a new call under the EIT HEI Initiative aimed at boosting innovation in higher education. The newly announced call will mobilise up to EUR 12 million of EIT funding for higher education institutions (HEIs) and their partners. A new feature of this year’s call will be a special focus on training tech talents in higher education, aligned with the EIT’s new flagship programme Deep Tech Talent Initiative, which is set to skill one million European talents by 2023.

Mariya Gabriel, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, said:

With the help of the EIT HEI Initiative, higher education institutions are transforming into leading examples of institutional change and becoming deeply embedded in our pan-European innovation ecosystem. Initiatives like this directly support the New European Innovation Agenda, which is working to transform Europe into a global, deep-tech innovation powerhouse.’

 Nektarios Tavernarakis, Chair of the EIT Governing Board, added:

As an educator and scientist myself, I have witnessed first-hand the important role of universities in driving innovation, reskilling, and upskilling to meet the demands of the future of knowledge transfer. With rapid advancements in technology, universities need to react swiftly in delivering skillsets to students that will allow us to see more innovators emerge from their programmes. The EIT HEI Initiative is here to help higher education institutions keep at pace, unlock their innovation and entrepreneurial potential, and connect to Europe’s largest innovation ecosystem.

Up to 16 consortia consisting of academic and non-academic organisations will be selected in the newly launched call. HEIs and their partners from across Europe (including Horizon Europe-associated countries) are encouraged to apply and join the EIT HEI Initiative network. This call for proposals builds on the success of the initiative’s two previous calls, which together awarded nearly 50 projects involving over 290 HEIs and 300 non-academic organisations (companies, research centres, public authorities and associations). HEIs from Ukraine are especially welcomed to apply to the call.

Organisations are encouraged to start preparing their application by reading the full call text on this page. The application system will open on 17 November 2022, and consortia will have until 28 February 2023, 17:00 CET, to submit their applications. The selected projects will be announced in May 2023.

A series of webinars will be held to present the EIT HEI Initiative’s new call in more detail and answer applicants’ questions. The specific contents, registration links and dates for the info sessions are listed on this page. Make sure to sign up before the deadline!

The EIT HEI Initiative is led by EIT RawMaterialsThe past year alone, projects have trained over 9 900 students, academic and non-academic staff and have supported over 310 start-ups and scale-ups in a vibrant ecosystem in which HEIs act as hubs that create systematic impact, re-imagine entrepreneurship education, and drive innovation around Europe.

EIT – Making innovation happen!

About the European Institute of Innovation and Technology

The EIT strengthens Europe’s ability to innovate by powering solutions to pressing global challenges and by nurturing entrepreneurial talent to create sustainable growth and skilled jobs in Europe. The EIT is an EU body and an integral part of Horizon Europe, the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation.  The Institute supports dynamic pan-European partnerships, EIT Knowledge and Innovation Communities, among leading companies, research labs and universities. Together with their leading partners, the EIT Community offers a wide range of innovation and entrepreneurship activities across Europe: entrepreneurial education courses, business creation and acceleration services and innovation driven research projects.

The EIT is Europe’s largest innovation ecosystem bringing together over to 3 400 partners from top business, research and education organisations across Europe in 200+ innovation hubs across Europe. The EIT has powered more than 3 200 start-ups and scale-ups, created more than 1 600 new products and services that have gone to raise more than EUR 6 billion in external capital. More than 4 600 students have graduated from EIT labelled master and doctoral programmes and over 100 000 have participated in EIT Community entrepreneurial trainings.

The EIT HEI Initiative: Innovation Capacity Building for Higher Education

The implementation of the EIT HEI Initiative: Innovation Capacity Building for Higher Education is led by EIT RawMaterials − one of the EIT’s Knowledge and Innovation Communities. The EIT Community initiative is an integral part of the EIT’s seven-year strategy and aims to reach 550 higher education institutions by 2027 to boost European innovation in higher education, and support the twin transition towards a more sustainable, digital and competitive Europe.