“The greatest elements of innovation were born
in Europe – leading universities and
entrepreneurship that drives growth. Europe
has an enormous diversity potential which
needs to be capitalised upon. We need a
supportive environment, market stability, and
flexible regulations, but most of all we need the
autonomy and a change of mindset of the
individual,” Olesen said.
In order to meet such challenges of
entrepreneurial education and stronger
innovation, the EIT is expanding its activities
through the EIT Regional Innovation Scheme, a
structured outreach scheme to increase the
innovation capacity in regions in Europe not
directly benefitting from the EIT and its KICs.
Furthermore, the EIT will also establish two new
KICs in 2016 in the fields of food security and
INNOVEIT 2015 brought together several
traditionally separate EIT events, including the
‘EIT Stakeholder Forum’. Organised by the EU
body, the forum brought together more than
600 entrepreneurs, researchers, policy makers,
business leaders and students to explore the
wide range of topics surrounding creating a
more effective and dynamic environment for
innovation in Europe.
Following this year’s conference, the forum
concluded that Europe needs to establish
stronger cross-border ecosystems to support
innovation if it is to flourish and bring about
change. Furthermore, entrepreneurs and
innovators need support, coaching andmentoring,
though the KICs are helping in shaping the path.
Through the current five KICs, the organisation
provides leadership and funding for its ‘EIT
Label’ courses that cherish the spirit of
entrepreneurship and aim to change the
mindset when it comes to innovation in Europe.
Such programmes have entrepreneurship
skills embedded into the curricula and are
tailored towards the needs of the European
innovation system, job market and society.
ducation is a crucial part of the European Institute of Innovation
and Technology (EIT). The organisation’s mission is based on
realising the knowledge triangle of higher education, research and
business through Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KIC).
According to the EIT, an entrepreneurial skillset now needs to be built
into Europe’s education system.
The need for a new approach to education was one of the conclusions
of the INNOVEIT 2015 conference, which took place in Budapest,
Hungary, and was attended by Portal. The conference concluded that
Europe’s traditional model of education needs a fresh approach if it is to
be competitive and meet the demands of an innovative society.
Commenting, Tibor Navracsics, European Commissioner for Education,
Culture, Youth and Sport, and responsible for overseeing the EIT, said:
“Innovative education plays a crucial role in restoring economic growth.
Investment in education is really an investment in tomorrow.
“The EIT offers a unique education model that is focused on the
development of entrepreneurship and innovation skills, helping to boost
innovation in Europe and create new, high quality jobs. This is how the
EIT can contribute to achieving this European Commission’s top political
priority of restoring growth and getting people back into work.”
With Europe lagging behind the United States, Japan and South Korea
in innovation, investment in entrepreneurial education will help to ensure
that the continent helps to regain important competitive advantages. Yet
as Peter Olesen, chair of the EIT Governing Board, commented, changing
the outlook of the individual is also important.
I S S U E S E V E N
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S P E C I A L F E AT U R E : I N N O V E I T 2 0 1 5
A new approach to education
Investigating the importance of education to entrepreneurship and innovation,
carries the thoughts of
and explores the EIT’s degree programmes
The EIT has a “unique
says Tibor Navracsics