Round Table INVESTING IN SECURITY: STIMULATING INNOVATION A New Role for SMEs in NATO & EU – 12 July 2017
At the NATO Summit in Warsaw, Allies agreed on the need to contribute more to the efforts of the international community in projecting stability and strengthening security by increasing Allied defense spending with an emphasis on improving innovation, research and development and procurement processes.
Following the NATO-EU Joint Declaration, the EU has begun to offer grants for collaborative research in innovative defence technologies and products, fully and directly funded from the EU budget. The role of the EDA has initiated a two-strand approach for financing consisting of research and development and acquisition amounting to hundreds of millions of Euros. With an emphasis on electronics, metamaterials, encrypted software and robotics, these funds will create incentives for Member States to cooperate on joint development and acquisition of defence equipment.
Essential to the success of these new policies, is a strong engagement with Small and Medium Enterprise (SMEs), particularly in areas of knowledge sharing, technical assistance, early warning systems and cybersecurity. To be effective in strengthening engagement with SMEs, the potential added value of a formal SME Advisory Group will be discussed.