The European Commission has updated plans for public-private research partnerships under Horizon Europe, including drafts for new projects proposed by the member states. These public-private research projects include areas like water transport, smart cities or antimicrobial resistance. The Commission is now publishing more detailed plans for 26 of these partnerships and the total number could grow to around 50. Most of the partnerships aim to start by next January as part of Horizon Europe. They are expected to spend about €20 billion in the coming seven years.
The public-private partnerships were first proposed in 2018 and the plans published now provide further details on the progress, scope and goals of the partnerships. In transport, plans for six partnerships have been released, covering rail, air traffic management, aviation, automated driving, zero-emission road transport and water transport. These proposals however only describe expected synergies and how the partnerships will work together to perform transport is not clear yet. Further clues may be provided at a later stage when more aspects of the partnerships are harmonised.
A new partnership called Driving Urban Transitions will address challenges cities face as they transition to greener, circular, carbon neutral economies. This will contribute to the Horizon Europe mission on climate neutral and smart cities with the goal of creating 100 carbon neutral cities by 2030.
In addition, a new industry partnership will work on zero emissions water transport. It aims to develop new green approaches to fuelling vessels and new regulations for waterborne transport. This partnership builds on the Waterborne Technology platform, an association made up of industry and academic partners.
Another partnership on antimicrobial resistance will launch in 2023 with the goal of overcoming fragmentation in the antimicrobial resistance research landscape, but details on its functioning have not yet been published.
One proposal involves the formation of a cultural and creative industries knowledge and innovation community (KIC) in the European Institute of Innovation and Technology, aiming to bring together SMEs and universities in support of the sector, which had been severely hit by COVID-19 lockdowns.
When all 49 plans are updated and selection criteria for European partnerships have been checked by the Commission, industry and member state partners will be able to sign up and participate. Due to prolonged budget negotiations, this stage has been postponed, but publishing of the full details of the partnerships can be expected after this summer.