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The Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) has refreshed its online platform to intelligently connect you to relevant events, funding, thought pieces and specialist staff to help your business innovate and grow.

You can discover content using your area of interest, from sustainability to transport; from space to health – all major UK economic sectors are covered. Once you have selected your interests, using our intelligent tagging system, we will then display rich and relevant content related to your area, often from surprising sources.

An example might be new satellite technology from the space sector that is applicable in the agri-food sector. KTN-UK.co.uk will help you form these unusual and valuable connections.

All content on the platform has been carefully curated by our team of innovation specialists – not by an automated algorithm – so you can be confident that KTN is connecting you to the most relevant cutting-edge information.


The move also marks a closer alignment with our main funder, Innovate UK , with the website branding making a clear visual link. Knowledge Transfer Network is Innovate UK's innovation network partner, and also works with other funders to provide innovation networking services and fulfil our mission to drive UK growth.

We link new ideas and opportunities with expertise, markets and finance through our network of businesses, universities, funders and investors. From agri-food to autonomous systems and from energy to design, KTN combines expertise in all sectors with the ability to cross boundaries. Connecting with KTN can lead to potential partners, horizon-expanding events and innovation insights relevant to your needs.

Visit our people pages to connect directly with expertise in your sector.

Visit the KTN refreshed online platfom here


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Horizon 2020 relevant to Transport Sector

The forthcoming European Union Research and Innovation programme, Horizon 2020, will be worth €70bn (at constant 2011 prices) over the next 7 years.  You can find out more about Horizon 2020 with the EU's FAQs on Horizon 2020, available by clicking here, or an introduction to Horizon 2020, available by clicking here.

€70bn-worth of opportunity

This is a big opportunity for UK organisations, not only those already engaged in EU-funded activity, but also those with expertise in other sectors adaptable to transport activity, and those who are looking for solutions that may be provided by technologies not currently applied in the transport sector.

What IS the transport industry?

Transport systems are the lifeblood of our economy.  The tendrils of transport systems reach far and wide and encompass many different aspects of industry. Transport-related industry therefore covers not only the obvious supply chain in manufacture and supply of road, rail and marine/maritime vehicles/vessels (aviation too of course!), but a much wider net, encompassing ICT, sensors, earth observation, design, human factors, mobile technologies, smart materials, clean energy, construction, urban design, visualization, gamification, and so on.    There is evidently a lot in “transport” that other less obvious industries could play a significant part in.  In addition to research organisations and academia, there is clearly a place in the transport eco-system for the large OEMs, but there is also vast opportunity for the smaller, more agile, SMEs, with their innovative solutions and fast responses to challenges.

SMEs get special attention – and funding – under Horizon 2020

It is good then, that Horizon 2020 will also introduce a new - simplified - funding mechanism specifically aimed at SMEs, called SBIR.  It aims to fill gaps in funding for early-stage, high-risk research and innovation by SMEs as well as stimulating breakthrough innovations. This will mean that individual companies will be able to apply for funding under their own auspices, as well as participating in major collaborative research and development.  Find out more about the opportunities for SMEs under Horizon 2020, by clicking here, and by watching the live webcast from Brussels on 25th November 2013.

Usual process

With previous EU funding mechanisms such as the Framework Programmes (FP7 was the most recent), the calls for proposals go through a back and forth process of industry input and EU ratification, which includes roadmaps, non-papers and draft Work Programmes before being published in the final work programme.  Unendorsed versions of the interim, draft papers are often available before the final official paper, via various channels (the Knowledge Transfer Networks and the National Contact Points are often in this bracket), so that industry and research organisations can get an indication of the potential final calls.  We indicate some of these below.

What's in it for you?

What follows is a brief synopsis of some of the challenge areas that are in some of the Horizon 2020 draft papers.  As of today, none of the draft papers available has been officially released, and they all come with a health warning.  The caveats are that they are draft, that they are not officially sanctioned, that they may change significantly, that the indicative funding (where given) is only that – indicative etc.  But if you make yourself familiar with them, you will have a good idea of what might be coming and will be in a sronger position to act when the final versions are available.

  1. Transport Challenge  (available at https://connect.innovateuk.org/documents/2800720/7771738/Horizon%202020%20for%20Transport%20DRAFT), as well as the usual suspects (road, rail, aviation, waterborne) includes:
    1. Urban mobility
    2. Logistics
    3. Intelligent transport systems
    4. Infrastructure
    5. Socio-economic and behavioural research and forward-looking activities for policy-making
  2. LEIT (Leadership in Enabling and Industrial Technologies) NMP (Nanotechnologies, Advanced Materials, and Advanced Manufacturing and Processing) Work Programme  (see http://www.materialschemistry.org.uk/Documents/NMPB%20early%20draft%20in%20confidence.pdf  for the draft LEIT).  Some areas in this that might be applicable to members of the Transport KTN include:
    1. Nanotechnology and Advanced Materials for low carbon energy technologies and energy efficiency
      1. Innovative materials solutions for storage of energy produced by decentralized sources
      2. ERA-NET on Materials for Energy
      3. Materials innovations for the optimization of cooling in power plants
      4. Extended in-service life of advanced functional materials in energy technologies (capture conversion storage and/or transmission of energy)
  3. ICT.   Under the first Horizon 2020 work programme, ICT activities will focus on the integration of advanced networks, of cloud computing with huge data processing capabilities, and of sensing and communicating devices to build smart connected environments to enable new classes of applications with high impact.   Some areas in this that might be applicable to members of the Transport KTN include:
    1. FET (Future and Emerging Technologies)
      1. Emerging High Performance Computing (HPC) workloads
        1. "HPC for Extreme Data workloads" addressing Extreme Data workload characterizations and their impact in processor designs, run-­‐time, OS and programming languages and tools; new methods in data migration and storage; highly dynamic, uncertain and streaming of data of unprecedented sizes and the impact in algorithms and systems; data standards enabling cross-­‐disciplinary data processing and interoperability based on innovative data services (e.g. storage access, indexing, metadata, etc.)
        2. "HPC as an instrument" to achieve special goals that requires dedicated and specialized resources, e.g. catastrophe response, real time and interactive HPC data-­‐ driven use, etc.
        3. "Industrial Usage of HPC as a commodity" addressing the deployment and consumption of HPC solutions and results at a wider scale extending the HPC user base.
      2. Managing, preserving and computing with big research data
      3. e-Infrastructure for open Access
      4. e-Infrastructures for virtual research environments (VRE)
    2. ICT LEIT Programme
      1. Support the growth of ICT innovative creative industries SMEs
      2. Advanced digital gaming/gamification technologies – in non-leisure contexts
      3. Robotics
      4. Micro and nano-technologies, photonics
      5. Manufacturing including Factories of the Future (FoF)
      6. ICT-enabled modeling, simulation, analytics and forecasting technologies
      7. Internet of Things and Platforms for Connected Smart Objects
    3. Societal challenges addressable by ICT
      1. Connectivity for sustainable mobility
      2. Smart connected automation in road transport
      3. Smart connected urban mobility services
      4. Smart cities and communities
      5. ICT for smart logistics
      6. Mobile services for Intelligent Transport Systems
      7. Digital infrastructures for transport and mobility

Some Horizon 2020 Events of interest to Transport KTN community members

Sep 19th ICT H2020 webinar

24th Oct Battery Manufacturing 2013 in Warwick, includes H2020 info relevant to transport sectors

8th Nov H2020 for Rail in London and by concurrent webinar (save yourself the travel time and costs!) includes explanation of the SME funding mechanism (no academic spaces left, sorry). Max 2 people per organisation in person. Draft agenda available here.

4th Oct – 27th Nov: Space: 4 regional workshops

·      Belfast on 4 October (back to back with a stakeholder event on the Space Innovation and Growth Strategy)

·      Cardiff on 13 November

·       London on 20 November

·      Glasgow on 27 November


What next?

We will make any further releases of the H2020 Transport draft papers available when we know about them, so follow us on Twitter to find out as soon as we do.

If you have specific questions about Horizon 2020 Transport, please contact Cliff Funnell, who is the National Contact Point in the UK.



2 people have had something to say so far

[...] Horizon 2020 relevant to transport sector €619million for 'Innovation in SMEs' (under new Horizon 2020 funding mechanisms) [...] Read More
Posted on 20/09/13 17:03.
[...] By popular demand, we are pleased to provide the materials supporting the Horizon 2020 for Rail event held by concurrent webinar from Hallam Street, on 8th Nov 2013. I simply found this event... [...] Read More
Posted on 21/11/13 14:19.

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