It is now official. The European Commission has formally proposed a continuation of the AAL Joint Programme for the period 2014 – 2020.
“The aim of the AAL JP – says a news post published on the website of the EC – is to support industry, in particular SME to bring digital innovative products and services for ageing well to the European market”. Another significant added value, continues the article, is the “Alignment with the European Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing (EIP AHA) could further boost deployment at European scale”.
Are there measurable results from the first phase?
The current phase of the programme (2008 – 2013), involves 19 EU countries, plus Israel, Norway and Switzerland.
In each of the more than 120 projects at least 3 Member States are taking part with their organizations: one SME, a knowledge institute and a user organisation. A strength of the AAL JP is the high participation and financing of SME (over 350, around 50% – as opposed to 25% on average in FP7). Other than that, the national financial contributions for the first 4 calls on average were 36% above the required minimum of 50%, in spite of austerity. Many projects have shown real potential for market deployment e.g. by securing financing beyond project duration.
Why this proposal?
The European Commission considered the “large SMEs participation, the proven exploitation potential and the percentage of companies that secured financing beyond the project duration (about 50%) were reasons .. to propose to continue the programme from 2014 till 2020 under the new Horizon 2020 research framework programme”.
In line with Horizon 2020
The new AAL JP is fully in line with the European Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing as it covers the ICT based innovation sphere. Furthermore, the renewal of the programme will make possible again the joint work of the European Commission together with the participating countries, so that economic effort is optimized and that development is harmonized.
For more info about this read: http://ec.europa.eu/information_society/newsroom/cf/dae/itemdetail.cfm?item_id=11393