EU innovation policy
The EU has become an increasingly important source of funding for research and innovation activities that will contribute to growth and solutions to the major societal challenges. Central to the policy is the Framework program for research and innovation, Horizon Europe, which account for about one tenth of the EU budget. The program finances both basic science and more market-oriented innovation projects. Universities and institutes are the major participants but the program is just as relevant for public actors and private companies to participate in projects to develop their businesses as well as new services and products. The program is managed directly by the EU that handle the applications that are submitted in competition with the whole of Europe.
The research policy is strongly linked to regional policy and other funds, specifically through the planning process of smart specialization. This is done by involving the entire regional innovation system in the strategy work and in the projects.
North Sweden European Office work on Innovation Policy
North Sweden monitors and influence the EU's innovation policy so that the regions can be utilized by the funds for their development and for research. This means working for that funds are allocated to the research areas where the regional actors are strong and are invested in the industries that are important for the growth of northern Sweden. North Sweden gives advice to the region on current funds and works strategically to assure they have great influence on the Brussels arena and opportunities to influence the content of the Innovation policy. The research funds are attractive and subject to great competition, so it is becoming increasingly important to participate in networks and partnerships in order to be able to take part of the funds and show their skills, where North Sweden supports the regional actors.
The mission also includes the monitoring of EU policy on Smart specialization for efficient use of EU funds and programs.
Innovation policy in northern Sweden
Northern Sweden is one of Europe's most innovative regions and has had great success in the competition for research and development funds from the EU, and as a large influence in the development of the region.
Within mining, minerals and natural resources, for example, they contribute to the transition towards sustainable mining and competitive production. In the field of information and communication technology, the health service help to deliver services to rural areas and energy-efficient data centers provide Europe with IT-infrastructure. The universities Mid Sweden University, Umeå University and Luleå University of Technology are strong research actors and compete for the funds, but also the smaller companies have proven strong in the competition for the funds that are utilized and create great value for the whole of Europe. In total, the regional actors has received 104 million euros from the framework program since the start of the program period in 2014.