April 2009

EURON Annual Meeting 2009

During the EURON Annual Meeting in Leuven on 07 April 2009, Rainer Bischoff, Chair of the EUROP Executive Board, and Bjoern Juretzki, European Commission, were invited to report on the situation of robotics in Europe.

Closer Industry-Academia Collaboration needed

Rainer Bischoff spoke about challenges & needs of the European robotics industry and came to the conclusion that a closer industry-academia collaboration would enhance the situation of robotics in Europe.  

The EUROP Executive Board Chair commented that European high-level research exists in all areas related to robotics. However, from an industrial point of view, there exists a big gap between today’s industrial needs and academic offerings. Research topics are (sometimes) too far directed towards future needs. Of course industry would prefer actual problem-related research than "blue sky research”. In some cases, industry does not know about the newest developments and solutions academia can offer.

Through closer collaboration between academia and industry the efficiency in robotics research and development can be improved. The development of the EUROP SRA is one example of enhanced collaboration. The common vision for European robotics has been elaborated and will be published on 07 July, 2009 in Brussels. The process will not be finished With this publication. All robotics stakeholders - robotics industry, robotics researchers, and private and public investors in research - should focus along the vision; the transfer of knowledge between the stakeholders has to be maximised. In general, the profile of European robotics should be raised: European robotics is well positioned and has much to be proud about.

Substantial support for European Robotics from the European Commission 

Bjoern Juretzki, Project Officer at the European Commision, DG Information Society and Media, INFSO E5 - Cognitive Systems, Interaction & Robotics, reported on EC research funding; in particular current activities and perspectives.

23 projects to the FP7-Call 3 (97 M€  budget) passed the evaluation and are retained. 17 projects have already started in early 2009.

The FP7-Call 4 (73 M€ budget) on Cognitive Systems and Robotics closed on 01 April 2009 and is currently under evaluation. The next Call for Proposals on Cognitive Systems and Robotics will be FP7- Call 6 (80 M€ budget) that will be publised at the end of 2009. 

Please find Rainer Bischoff's and Bjoern Juretzki's presentations attached below. More information about the EURON annual meeting can be found on http://www.euron.org/

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