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ILL, 2015
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ATTRACT: €17 million fund to power European detection and imaging innovation pipeline

A pioneering initiative to couple world-class research laboratories and business-management experts aims to create a European innovation ecosystem that will accelerate the development of disruptive technologies and their progress to market. ATTRACT, as the initiative is known, will commit €17 million to funding 170 breakthrough detection and imaging ideas with market potential to help enable the creation of  products, services, companies and jobs based on these technologies.

“The process of developing new science into technologies that enable breakthrough innovation often happens by chance. ATTRACT aims to create and deploy mechanisms and a permanent pipeline for systematically achieving such transformation,” says Prof. Henry Chesbrough, who coined the term ‘Open Innovation’ and is a special advisor to ATTRACT. “In contrast to incremental innovation, which generates reactive or adaptive responses to a problem, breakthrough innovation is driven by a desire to anticipate emerging or future needs.”

The ATTRACT seed fund is open to researchers and entrepreneurs from organisations all over Europe. The call for proposals is already open and will collect breakthrough ideas until the 31st of October 2018. A high-level, independent Research, Development and Innovation Committee will evaluate proposals and select those to be funded based on a combination of their scientific merit, innovation readiness and potential societal impact. The successful proposals will be announced in early 2019.

[more on the ATTRACT website]

The French Research Minister, Mrs Frédérique Vidal, visits the EPN campus

On Wednesday 13 June, Frédérique Vidal, France’s Minister for Higher Education, Research and Innovation, visited the EPN campus as part of a two-day programme in Grenoble. She was accompanied by representatives from important local and regional institutions.


Mrs Vidal was welcomed to the ESRF by Francesco Sette, Director General, Helmut Schober, the ILL Director, Stephen Cusack, Head of the EMBL outstation in Grenoble, and the Director of IBS, Winfried Weissenhorn.

Mr Sette and Mr Schober launched the visit with a presentation of the collaboration being developed on the EPN Campus to guarantee research excellence in Europe. Francesco Sette presented the EBS project and the research carried out at the ESRF; Helmut Schober explained the prominent role being played by the ILL in determining the evolution of a rapidly evolving neutron science landscape.
The visit continued with a tour of the ESRF’s ID01 instrument and the Cryo-EM platform, an excellent example of collaboration between the EPN institutions. The tour ended for the visitors in front of the large red ESRF spectrometer on ID32.

Mrs Vidal was accompanied by a delegation of local authorities, including Lionel Beffre, Préfet of Isère, Fabienne Blaise, Rector of the Grenoble Academy, Jean-Charles Colas-Roy, Member of Parliament, Yannick Neuder, Vice-President of the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region, Christophe Ferrari, President of La Métro, Claus Habfast, representing the Mayor of Grenoble, Lise Dumasy, President of the Communauté Université Grenoble-Alpes, Patrick Levy, President of the Université Grenoble Alpes, and Pierre Benech, General administrator of the Institut polytechnique de Grenoble.

The delegation visited ID01 with explanations from Tobias Schulli and Marie Ingrid Richard. ©ESRF/Pierre Jayet
©ESRF/Pierre Jayet

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