The new Regional Innovation Plan for 2021-2027 was enthusiastically presented in the Brussels Parliament by the Innoviris management team, Stefaan Sonck Thibaut and Marie-Carmen Bex, and by Barbara Trachte, State Secretary for Scientific Research and Economic Transition.

The Regional Innovation Plan, approved in June, is the result of a unique participatory process involving all research and innovation actors around Innoviris.

The aim of this multi-annual plan is to define the priorities for public funding of research and innovation, with the new RIS3 (Regional Innovation Strategy for Smart Specialisation) at its core.

It is not a simple 'update' of the previous plan, it is also about ensuring a stimulating framework that facilitates all innovators to transform their innovative ideas into concrete solutions that contribute to improving the well-being of the people of Brussels and their environment.

At the intersection of the societal challenges of Brussels, the potential of the Brussels RDI ecosystem and the realisation of the economic transition of the Brussels Capital Region, six Strategic Innovation Domains (SID) were defined in this new plan for innovation. These SIDs are the priority domains on which public support for R&I will be concentrated.

Five thematic SIDs reflect the need of the Brussels-Capital Region to develop solutions that increase knowledge and resilience:

  • Climate: sustainable buildings and infrastructure;
  • Optimal use of resources;
  • Efficient and sustainable urban space and flows;
  • Health and personalised and integrated care;
  • Social and public innovation, and social inclusion.

The 6th strategic innovation domain, the transversal SID, includes 'Advanced digital technologies and services', which has long been a strong asset of the region.

Barbara Trachte, State Secretary for Economic Transition and Scientific Research, said:

"We started with an extensive stakeholder consultation, because we wanted this new PRI to be anchored in their reality and that of the Region, and to take into account innovations in all their forms, from industrial innovation to technological innovation, through social and democratic innovation. These consultations led to the definition of strategic areas that were approved by the government in June. I am very pleased, because they are in line with our desire to make Brussels a pioneering region in terms of transition. Innovation is one of the fundamental keys to achieving this."

Stefaan Sonck Thibaut, Director General Innoviris, stated:

"Innovation and research are the beating heart of our society. Everyone knows the challenges of an urban region like Brussels, on issues such as mobility, health, housing, climate and social cohesion. The new Regional Innovation Plan is our compass with which we want to facilitate creative solutions for these challenges, through expertise and funding. We are very fortunate to be able to support the dynamic ecosystem for innovation with companies, research centres and non-profit organisations. As Regional Innovation Leader in Europe, we will continue to build on the future of our region and the welfare and prosperity of every person in Brussels.

The presentation was an additional opportunity to exchange views on these themes, with special thanks to external speakers Jean-Eric Paquet, Director General of Research at the European Commission, Ilham Kadri (Solvay), Luna Aslan (Noosa), Chloé Angé (VIA), Clémentine Ebert (Casa Legal) and Molengeek

The full version of the Regional Innovation Plan is available in French and Dutch. If you require more details, please feel free to contact us. 

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