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EC Opens Proof of Concept Funding Call

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The European Commission opened a call for proposals to fund early-stage scientific research ideas with commercialization potential. Applications for the €10 million ($US 13.4 million) fund are due 24 April 2013.

The Proof of Concept grants, as the program is called, are open to holders of current European Research Council science project funding. The scheme aims to encourage scientists to take research ideas with commercial potential to the point of proving their technical and business feasibility, for presentation to venture capital financiers or social entrepreneurs.

The grants, with a maximum payout of €150,000 for 12 months, would support studies to establish the technical viability of their ideas, and outline subsequent intellectual property strategy for those ideas. The funding is also expected to help recipients establish a business plan and budget, cover initial start-up expenses for a company, and begin to find financial backing for the enterprise.

Proposals should provide a detailed description of the project outlining its objectives, planning, execution, and required resources. The submissions should include a summary of the research idea taken to the point of proof-of-concept, indicating the commercial idea’s relationship to the previously funded European Research Council study.

Submissions should also outline the innovation strategy, identifying markets and customers, technical testing process, social benefits, and intellectual property steps. Proposals should likewise present a plan for establishing the feasibility of the idea, and a budget for the project. The reviewers ask that proposals be kept to seven pages.

Proposals will be evaluated by their innovative approach and potential, as well as anticipated economic or social benefits.

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Hat tip: Innovation Daily

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