Funding programmes, competitions and awards
Most Innovative European Biotech SME Awards 2018
EuropaBio, the European Association for Bioindustries, invites biotech start-ups and small and medium sized biotech companies (SMEs) across Europe to apply for the ninth edition of the Most Innovative European Biotech SME Award – a unique annual initiative recognising biotech innovation and its contribution to society. Depending on their field of activity, SMEs can apply in three categories: healthcare, agricultural or industrial biotech. Biotech start-ups will compete across all sectors in one special category recognising early stage entrepreneurship. Applications must be submitted online at biotechSMEawards.eu by COB Sunday 30 September 2018. Two companies will be shortlisted in each category by a Jury of biotech and SME experts, with the winners celebrated during a landmark event held later in the year. Each winner will also receive prize money and two years free EuropaBio membership (runners-up also receive the latter).
According to the European Commission, “small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are the backbone of Europe's economy. They represent 90% of all businesses in the EU. In the past five years, they have created around 85% of new jobs and provided two-thirds of the total private sector employment in the EU.” In other words, SMEs matter and the leaders in innovation should be recognised and rewarded.
Biotech exemplifies the way in which science and scientific breakthroughs can be applied to respond to current problems. From new therapies that can address unmet medical needs and fight epidemics and rare diseases, to industrial processes that use renewable feedstocks instead of crude oil, to drought-resistant crops that allow farmers around the world to feed more people under unpredictable climatic conditions, biotechnology pays economic, social and environmental dividends.
These awards have become one of the highlights in the European biotech calendar, with over 200 SMEs competing over the years. Their success stories can be read online at biotechSMEawards.eu.
Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) announces Call 15 and 16
IMI2 – Call 15 is a standard two-stage Call for proposals with the following topics:
- Integrated research platforms enabling patient-centric drug development
- Blockchain enabled healthcareMicroenvironment imposed signatures in tissue and liquid biopsies in immune-mediated diseases
- Emerging translational safety technologies and tools for interrogating human immuno-biology
- Development and validation of translational platforms in support of synaptopathy drug discovery
- Digital endpoints in neurodegenerative and immune-mediated diseases
Topics under the IMI2 Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) Accelerator programme:
- AMR Accelerator Pillar A: Capability Building Network to accelerate and validate scientific discoveries
- AMR Accelerator Pillar B: Tuberculosis drug development network to accelerate and validate scientific discoveries and advance the R&D pipeline of new and innovative agents to address the global tuberculosis epidemic
Deadline for short proposals: 24 October 2018
Call web page: bit.ly/IMI2Call15
IMI2 – Call 16 is a single-stage Call for proposals dedicated to Pillar C of the AMR Accelerator programme ‘Portfolio Building Networks to advance the R&D pipeline of new and innovative agents to address AMR’
Deadline for proposals: 24 October 2018
Call web page: bit.ly/IMI2Call16
Future Insight Prize
Merck will award the new “Future Insight Prize” of up to € 1 million annually for the next 35 years. The prize will be presented to researchers who will make outstanding contributions to enable innovations important for the future of humanity in the categories of health, nutrition and energy.
The new award will be issued for the first time at next year’s “Curious2019” conference. It will relate to the health category and a ‘Pandemic Protector’ – a News Release Page 2 of 3 visionary dream product enabling an accelerated protection against newly emerging pathogens. The ‘Pandemic Protector’ should make it possible to swiftly analyze emerging pathogens, to generate an agent for disease treatment or prevention, and in doing so protect humanity against the outbreak of a new, global plague. A scouting team will monitor scientific activity worldwide with a view to selecting potential candidates for the award. Experts in the relevant fields are likewise free to propose candidates of their own. The chosen scientists will be approached and asked to submit their entry to a jury of distinguished scientists and managers, drawn both from Merck and beyond. The winner of the respective award should use the prize for further research on the specific topic.
The Future Insight Prize for the years thereafter will be awarded for the following three topics:
- 2020: Multi-Drug Resistance Breaker - solving the problem of antibacterial resistance to multiple antibacterials (category health)
- 2021: Food Generator – Technology to help feed the world’s growing population (category nutrition)
- 2022: CO2-to-Fuel Converter – Generating fuel by photocatalytic conversion of atmospheric CO2 (category energy)
All future research projects receiving this award should contribute to laying the scientific and technological basis for the later realization of so-called “dream products”, in the first year the ‘Pandemic Protector’. The products envisaged are visionary products which the prize will catalyze to become reality. The same principle applies to the dream products Multi-Drug Resistance Breaker, Food Generator and CO2-to-Fuel Converter. None of the awarded projects is meant to be in connection to or to directly contribute to any of the three business sectors of Merck. More information and illustrations are available at www.merckgroup.com/de/news/future-insight-prize-17-07-2018.html
Funding announcements of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)
Regulations governing the funding of grants for scientific and technological cooperation (STC) with Chile – published in the Federal Gazette on 29 June 2018.
Call for proposals under the Federal Government’s Strategy for the Internationalisation of Education, Science and Research: regulations governing the funding of research and development projects between Germany and Brazil within the EUREKA framework – published in the Federal Gazette on 6 July 2018.
Call for proposals under the Federal Government’s Strategy for the Internationalisation of Education, Science and Research: regulations governing the funding of joint innovative projects in the field of applied research through the German-Egyptian Research Fund (GERF), under the fifth joint announcement of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Science and Technology Development Fund (STDF) of the Arab Republic of Egypt – published in the Federal Gazette on 11 July 2018.
Call for proposals under the Federal Government’s Strategy for the Internationalisation of Education, Science and Research: regulations governing the Southeast Asia-Europe Joint Funding Scheme for Research and Innovation in the thematic areas of bioeconomy and infection research – published in the Federal Gazette on 16 July 2018.
Call for proposals under the Federal Government’s Strategy for the Internationalisation of Education, Science and Research: regulations governing the funding of research projects with Tunisia that involve both the research and business sectors – published in the Federal Gazette on 24 July 2018.