The EIT and its Governing Bodies

The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) aims to be the flagship of European innovation. It was founded in 2008 and its headquarters are located in Budapest, Hungary.

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Aim of the EIT

The aim of the EIT is to increase the innovation capacity of Member States and thus contribute to sustainable economic growth in Europe.

Whereas excellent minds in both education and research were often isolated from the business world until now, actors from all areas of the "knowledge triangle" (education, research and innovation) are now brought together at the highest level in "Knowledge and Innovation Communities" (KICs). These KICs make it possible for results from science and research to be transferred directly into commercial innovation ideas. In turn, this transfer can close large gaps in the cooperation between science and industry, thereby considerably shortening the path from an idea to a marketable product..

Governing Bodies of the EIT

Since 2019, the EIT is managed by director Martin Kern, who was previously acting director from 2014 onwards. The director is elected for a four-year term and is appointed by the Governing Board. As the EIT’s legal representative, the director is responsible for implementing the Governing Board’s decisions. The Governing Board coordinates the EIT’s activities and ensures its strategic management. The Governing Board is supported by the Executive Committee.

Governing Board

The Governing Board is composed of high-level representatives with long-standing experience in higher education, research, innovation and business. The Governing Board is composed with the aim of gender and geographic balance in mind and has excellence as its guiding principle. The Governing Board is responsible for steering the EIT’s activities as well as for the selection, designation and evaluation of the KICs and for all other strategic decisions. Governing Board members typically hold four-year terms. The Chair of the Governing Board for the period 2020 to 2022 is Gioia Ghezzi.

Executive Committee

The Executive Committee is composed of selected individuals representing all three dimensions of the Knowledge Triangle as well as the Chair of the Board of Directors. The Executive Committee assists the Governing Board to perform its duties and prepares Governing Board meetings in cooperation with the Executive Board.

EIT Funding

Over the entire duration of Horizon Europe (2021 to 2027), 2.936 billion euro will be available for the EIT and the KICs. Of this amount, 2.854 billion euro (96% of the total EIT budget) is earmarked to fund existing and new KICs. In addition to the eight KICs that already exist, two new KICs are to be established in the next few years, one in the area of cultural and creative industries and one in the field of water, marine and maritime sectors and ecosystems. The EIT funds awarded to KICs should account for an average of only 25% of a KIC's funding, meaning that KIC partners are required to additionally make contributions. These contributions can be made through funds from European, national and regional funding, through foundation contributions or through cash or in-kind contributions.