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Minister Schavan drives EUREKA's innovation agenda at the Hannover Messe


26 Apr 2010


Innovation & Enterprise

Hanover, Germany, 19 April 2010— Even with Europe’s planes grounded, EUREKA’s participation at the annual Hannover Messe got off to a flying start today, with a visit by Federal Research Minister Annette Schavan to the EUREKA stand and a well-attended press conference led by European Parliamentarian Godlieve Quisthoudt-Rowohl, Walter Mönig, who heads Germany’s Chairmanship of EUREKA and Luuk Borg, Head of the EUREKA Secretariat.

Despite difficult travelling conditions, speakers from EUREKA’s high-tech, industry-led Clusters were still able to participate in sessions organised by Deutsche Messe AG. Matchmaking activities involving a number of technical experts and organised by EUREKA also went ahead as planned and enabled visitors to understand the real benefits of starting or getting involved in a trans-frontier collaborative project.

The EUREKA stand showcased examples of the many successful innovative technologies developed through the international collaborative endeavours of EUREKA project participants. The E! 4564 BUDDY (electric car) and E! 4030 SPC (for pipeline inspection) projects both had prototypes on the stand, which drew much interest from visitors. Federal Research Minister Annette Schavan saw the results of a successful EUREKA collaboration at first hand when she sat behind the wheel of the BUDDY electric car.

‘We really needed to raise the visibility of EUREKA and the amazing achievements of the businesses and other organisations that have been participating in our R&D projects across Europe for 25 years,’ said Luuk Borg, Head of EUREKA’s Brussels-based Secretariat, who attended the event on Monday and also spoke at the press conference. ‘The Hannover Messe represents a really good mix for us—focussing on high technologies, the right visitor profile and of course its reputation as the biggest fair of its kind in the world.’ 

The decision to be so present at the Hannover Messe in 2010 was motivated by EUREKA’s annual Chairmanship currently being held by Germany. Chairman Walter Mönig of the BMBF (Federal Research Ministry) spoke of the achievements of R&D projects carried out under the auspices of EUREKA over the network’s 25 year history and invited journalists to visit the stand at the fair to learn more about the work of EUREKA. Mönig was also at hand to guide Minister Schavan around the EUREKA stand, where she posed for a number of photos and spoke to project participants present.

Israel will host the EUREKA Chairmanship from July 2010 and will also be present later in the week at the Messe, with a speaker.

Only one of the three projects shortlisted for the 2010 EUREKA Innovation Award was able to be present at the EUREKA stand; the winner of the award will be announced prior to the EUREKA Ministerial conference in Berlin, in June 2010.