SMEs are the real backbone of Europe’s economy but only 22% of them are really oriented towards innovation. In this perspective, HEIs can and must support them more. What is needed is a better and more structured interaction among HEIs and SMEs and a higher ability of European universities to train industrial researchers really prepared to deal with the unique cultural and research contexts of SMEs.

HEIs and SMEs involved in GIENAHS Alliance will look for funds to ensure the future implementation, after the lifetime of the project, of the first pilot Industrial PhD path for SMEs. A new GIENAHS Observatory among HEIs, SMEs and Industrial Associations will be created and tasked to build a strong European network for supporting the matching between SMEs and European young researchers, promoting a culture of industrial research career in SMEs really attractive and inspiring.


Grasping Innovation in Europe through a closer iNterAction between HEIs and SMEs

GIENAHS intends to take up the challenge of contributing to the growth of innovation culture in European SMEs by developing a modern and common European standard for interaction HEIs and SMEs; by fostering a stronger collaboration between HEIs and SMEs through a new methodological approach, where HEIs with SMEs will design industrial PhD paths. It will specifically focus on the key aspects that support innovation in SMEs, will concretely align researchers’ training in higher education based on SMEs’ specific needs and requirements. The new approach will be tested through the joint design of a first industrial PhD path for SMEs (will guarantee the related procedure for Pan-European recognition), along with a proposal of harmonization of Industrial PhD disciplines in Europe, to concretely promote the mobility of researchers.


Brighten up industrial research in European SMEs

Working with project colleagues from academia and companies from six different European countries to improve better interaction between HEIs and SMEs is a very inspiring experience which brings us together in our ambition to create better conditions for innovation processes….”

Angela Hillemyr