The European Innovation Council (EIC) has unveiled its 2024 Work Programme, allocating over €1.2 billion for strategic technologies and scaling up companies that can have a major impact on EU objectives. This funding is primarily aimed at SMEs and start-ups, especially in the realm of “deep tech” innovations. Here’s an overview of the key challenge areas:
1. Human Centric Generative AI made in Europe (€50 million)
- Objective: The focus here is on developing AI models that embody EU values, addressing transparency and trust issues. This challenge encourages European AI start-ups to create generative AI models that align with a human-centric approach.
2. Enabling Virtual Worlds and Augmented Interaction (€50 million)
- Objective: This challenge aims to integrate high-fidelity virtual worlds into high-impact markets and applications, underpinning Industry 5.0's principles of sustainability, human-centricity, and resilience. It supports innovations in platforms, middleware, tools, and devices.
3. Enabling the Smart Edge and Quantum Technology Components (€50 million)
- Objective: The goal is to foster the development of novel semiconductor components and integrated smart systems for next-generation edge devices. Proposals should focus on developing smart integrated devices, leveraging system approaches or key components.
4. Food from Precision Fermentation and Algae (€50 million)
- Objective: In line with EU environmental strategies, this challenge supports the production of sustainable and nutritious food from precision fermentation and algae. The focus is on novel production processes that are energy-efficient, low emission, and contribute to a healthy diet.
5. Monoclonal Antibody-Based Therapeutics for Emerging Viruses (€50 million)
- Objective: This initiative aims to enhance the EU's response to future pandemics by developing broad-spectrum monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against new virus variants. It seeks to complement rapid detection and analysis efforts and develop treatments targeting variants of high concern.
6. Renewable Energy Sources and Their Whole Value Chain (€50 million)
- Objective: The challenge aims to scale up various renewable energy sources (RES) and their supply chains, reducing the EU’s dependency on imports, including critical raw materials. It contributes to the EU’s strategic autonomy in the energy sector.
The EIC Accelerator Challenges for 2024 are a great opportunity for innovative SMEs and start-ups in the UK and EU. Our grant writers are experts in assisting businesses to apply for Horizon Europe funding opportunities, if you want to discuss your eligibility and find out more about the application process, book a free consultation with us here: Book a meeting with Inventya.