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Europe 2020 Flagship Initiative - Innovation Union

15 Mar 2011
Adopted References: CESE 524/2011 - INT/545 Referral - COM(2010) 546 final Rapporteur: Mr Wolf (Various interests - GR III / Germany) Co-rapporteur: Mr Svensson (Employers - GR I / Sweden) Plenary Session: 470 - 15 Mar 2011 - 16 Mar 2011 OJ C 132, 3.5.2011, p. 39

Opinion of the European Economic and Social Committee on the Communication from the Commission to the Council, the European Parliament, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: Europe 2020 Flagship Initiative - Innovation Union

Key points:

Innovations need a European approach and a European single market, in which the European Research Area, with a powerful R&D Framework Programme, plays a key role.

The Committee welcomes the Commission's Communication and welcomes the fact that innovations are understood and defined in terms of their broader ramifications – in other words, that they span not only research, technology and products, but also all human interactions and kinds of organisations, including social services, business practices and models, design, branding and services, as well as the diverse interplay between them.

The essential political task is to create reliable, innovation-friendly, Europe-wide boundary conditions and frameworks with sufficient leeway, thus relieving potential inventors and innovation processes of the burden of the present fragmentation and overloading of regulatory frameworks and bureaucracies diversified across 27 Member States plus the Commission.

The Committee therefore recommends concentrating much more effort on removing any obstacles opposing or hindering the swift introduction of innovations and the creation of an Innovation Union.