BRUSSELS --- The European Defence Agency (EDA) and the European Commission (DG GROW) today jointly held a successful Information & Brokerage Day to inform potential applicants on the Preparatory Action on Defence Research (PADR) and the details of the 2019 calls for proposals published on 19 March.
Almost 300 participants representing a wide variety of companies (including SMEs), research centres, universities, Ministries of Defence, European institutions, regional/local authorities and defence related organisations joined in Brussels to attend the event.
In his keynote speech, EDA Chief Executive Jorge Domecq said it was “of utmost importance that EU funded defence research leads to real products that can enhance European capabilities.” He added: “The Pilot Project which EDA managed was successfully concluded and follow-up activities to exploit the results from it are already under discussion. It is therefore very encouraging to see downstream activities from the Pilot Project that should encourage further uptake of the results from the Preparatory Action on Defence Research.”
In her opening remarks, Sylvia Kainz-Huber, Head of Unit Defence 2 in the European Commission (DG GROW), thanked EDA for the fruitful collaboration. She added that “the European Union should not substitute Member States’ efforts in defence, but it can encourage their collaboration, for instance in developing and acquiring the technologies and equipment needed to address common security and defence challenges".
The PADR 2019 work programme includes the following calls/topics:
-- Electromagnetic Spectrum Dominance: Combined radar, communications, and electronic warfare functions based on European Active Electronically Scanned Arrays for military applications (PADR-EMS-03-2019).
-- Future Disruptive Defence Technologies
-- Emerging Game-changers (PADR-FDDT-EMERGING-03-2019)
-- Challenging the future (PADR-FDDT-OPEN-03-2019).
-- Unmanned systems: Interoperability standards for military unmanned systems (PADR-US-03-2019).
During the Information & Brokerage Day, participants received detailed presentations and played an active role in interactive information sessions on the three PADR calls for proposals. The Brokerage event which took place in the afternoon provided participants with plenty of opportunities for networking with partners interested in forming consortia. More than 250 bilateral meetings have been held.
Published on 19 March 2019 in the Funding & Tender Opportunities Portal on the European Commission website, the calls will be implemented through grants with a deadline for submission set to 28 August 2019.
The Preparatory Action on Defence Research is the first substantial EU funded Action through which the European Commission, supported by EDA, is making an important contribution to European defence, as set out in the 2016 EU Global Strategy and its Implementation Plan.
The PADR follows a Pilot Project managed by EDA and successfully concluded in November last year. With a total budget of €90M over three years (€25M in 2019), the PADR is implemented through three work programmes with different calls and topics. EDA published the first PADR calls for proposals on 7 June 2017 and the second on 15 March 2018. A total of 24 proposals were received involving some 190 different entities from 25 countries in 2017 (24 Member States plus Norway), and 8 proposals were received in 2018 involving 85 different entities from 20 countries.
The 2019 PADR calls for proposals are the third and final call published. Five projects (OCEAN 2020, Pythia, ACAMS II, GOSSRA and VESTLIFE), selected and funded following the 2017 Calls for Proposals, are already ongoing. The three projects of the 2018 Calls will be signed in the near future. EDA, as the entrusted implementing Agency is strongly committed to the PADR objective of testing the added-value of the EU budget supporting defence research, in view of a potential EU programme in the next EU Multi-annual Financial Framework.