by Beatriz Domenech

R+D Projects

25th March 2021

The European Light Industries Innovation and Technology Project (ELIIT) was created with the aim of supporting the introduction of the latest technological advances from research centres, universities and technology companies in SMEs in traditional manufacturing sectors, to increase their competitiveness and support European assets in strategic value chains.

This is the context to the European Union launching ELIIT, coordinated by AITEX. ELIIT is a European cascade funding programme open to SMEs and will select 25 projects through two calls for proposals. The selected projects will receive the following benefits:

  • Financial support of €70,000
  • Participation in European congresses, conferences and trade fairs and the organisation of networking activities.
  • Training programme and personalised monitoring of each project by experts in different areas (market, entrepreneurship, technical advice, circular economy, finance, etc.).
  • Conferences with investors and business Angels


The second call for applications opened on 25 January 2021, and closes at 17:00 on 14 April 2021. Submission of projects must follow the steps below:

  1. Register on the EMS platform, throught the website (ec.europa.eu/eliit). The platform is also a database where more than 450 European SMEs and technology providers have already registered.
  2. The technical proposal is submitted through this platform. To do so, the collaborative proposal template must be filled in with the details of the research centre, university or technology company together with an SME from the industry.

If you do not have a partner to submit your proposal with, you can search the platform or ask the ELIIT team for help by email: info@eliitproject.eu.

  • Pass the selection process, which will be carried out in two phases. In the first phase, eligible proposals will be evaluated according to the evaluation criteria, resulting in a short list of selected projects. In the second phase, the projects will be taken to final evaluation where international professionals on the Expert Committee will evaluate them and announce the finalists.
ELIIT will select projects that
  • Demonstrate technology transfer from a technology partner (technology centre, university or company owning the technology) to an SME in the TCLF sectors. The technology transfer can be vertical (from a partner with a novel technology to an SME seeking further development/application in the same sector) or horizontal (from a partner with a technology currently applied/demonstrated in one sector – e.g. automotive – to an SME in the textile sector).
  • The technology to be transferred must be in a TRL7, i.e. there must be a validated prototype for industrial scalability.
  • The technology must be novel, even if it is already being used in other applications.
  • ELIIT seeks cooperation, so it is important that the proposal conveys this collaboration between an SME and technology provider.
  • Project duration will be 12 or 18 months.
  • The objective of the project can focus on both process and product improvement.

More information on these projects can be found at https://ec.europa.eu/eliit

ELIIT is funded by the European Union’s COSME programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises.

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