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INNOVATION IMPACT links to users and their needs. Living lab environments may be inter- There is an obvious, urgent need for more innovative low-carbon esting to develop further in this respect. In addition to technology, technologies, in particular for radical innovations that lead to push mechanisms that are typical for research and a stronger link step improvements in energy effi ciency, reduced greenhouse gas to market pull instruments may be necessary to speed the commer- emissions, and production costs. This requires technological, but cialisation path. Technology procurement would be an interesting increasingly also scientifi c innovation. Emphasis should be on the approach to shorten the time from research to market. entire innovation chain and on turning basic scientifi c results into technological concepts, products, and systems. More effi cient in- Better coordination between national efforts and joint European novation programmes / systems, in particular at universities, should efforts with all EU countries included is badly needed. Coupling be encouraged to achieve this. Mobility of scientists and students between innovation and industrial implementation has to take place among research institutions and industry should be achieved at all levels. Industrial partners operating on the European scale through new types of more fl exible grants. The SET-Plan provides a should team up with strong consortia of centres of excellence. SMEs potentially solid platform for a dialogue between industry and R&D can benefi t from European efforts through strong coupling to local organisations and universities, which indirectly will speed up the centres of excellence, thus gaining access to networks of pertinent innovation processes. High-quality, curiosity-driven, free research expertise. Public administration should encourage new entrepre- attracts the best young minds and guarantees that truly new ideas neurial approaches at universities and foster connections between continue to be generated. research centres and universities with problem-solving approaches. The transition toward sustainable energy will also require profound Hence, a much stronger interplay between university research and changes in the everyday life of European citizens and in the organi- education and development in industry should be encouraged. sation of cities. Collaboration of social sciences and humanities Issues of IPR (Intellectual Property Rights) and success payment with the “hard sciences” must be recognised as necessary and should be addressed on a European scale. More innovation organised and funded accordingly. Social sciences can follow and diffusion of research results can be achieved through better and analyse public reactions and provide guidance and a vision networking and stronger links between demand and supply. The of possible scenarios toward energy transition. History, economy, composition of research consortia should give higher priority to the and policy studies should be considered in European-wide deploy- quality of partners and less to political priorities, and also be more ment of new technologies. There is an urgent need for innovation, open to new partners. Innovations are necessary along the whole including economic, political, and legal aspects to enhance the value chain, from fundamental science and new technologies to transformation of our presentday society to a society based on low- new services and policy tools. The fi rst two require a substantial re- carbon energy. The full potential of renewable energy technologies search budget, while the latter two require completely new thinking cannot be achieved if the markets do not express the real cost of and new approaches to energy innovations. Assuring high scientifi c fossil energies. Whether by application of environmental taxes or qualifi cations of the coordinator and the PIs of all partners, is also by other means, this “renormalisation” of price tags is a necessity. important in this context. An important task for economists is to establish a socially accept- able and morally just way of including environmental concerns in The fi nal point to emphasise is that Horizon 2020 should be the price of coal, oil, gas, and nuclear energy. This is certainly a designed to match the challenges of globalisation. The goals and cross-disciplinary task for social sciences and natural sciences to expected achievements of each programme should be reviewed tackle together. in a global context, combined with regular and comprehensive overviews of the actual state of the art and needed progress. This To reach the ambitious targets of the EU energy policy, we need to should be done in an open process to enable stakeholders to see intensify and accelerate technological progress, reducing innova- efforts and plans from a global perspective and help avoid wasting tion bottlenecks. In order to achieve this goal, the whole chain of scarce resources on parallel and less effective efforts. This could be innovation must be considered when revising old programmes or combined with new mechanisms to monitor and stimulate the intro- setting up new endeavours. Viewing the commercialisation or inno- duction of European low-carbon technologies to the global market. vation chain as a whole and its elements more concurrently (i.e. not linearly) will speed up the pace from research to use. Users need to be more involved in the innovation processes. Innovation and technology development should not be pursued in isolation, without 48


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