2nd May 2023
The 2023 edition of EIT Health’s DRIVE training programme for innovation ecosystem players is now open!
Health and life science start-ups need specific support in bringing ideas to market due to the unique features of the industry, such as the difficult and ever-changing regulatory environment, the necessity of clinical validation and a complex stakeholder network. Due to these specific needs, regional development agencies and innovation hubs that provide incubation and acceleration services also need special programmes to be able to provide comprehensive support for health & life science start-ups. EIT Health’s DRIVE programme aims to fulfil this need.
DRIVE aims to provide incubator organisations with a deep understanding of the untapped opportunities in their health innovation ecosystem. In the course of the programme, they learn how to design sustainable support programmes tailored to regional needs, how to launch, manage, assess and measure the impact of these programmes, and how to identify and engage the vital stakeholders in order to build a successful innovation ecosystem. The overall ambition is to boost quality start-up support activities in the healthcare field in Central, Eastern and Southern Europe.
„The past 15 weeks brought about an intensive and fruitful exchange of knowledge in ecosystem building in the healthcare innovation field. At the start of the programme, the participating development agencies presented their regional innovation capabilities. During the training sessions, they have done an in-depth analysis of their region. Meanwhile, we provided them with bull’s eye business knowledge. Now, we are confident that they have a better understanding of cooperating with stakeholders and formulating action plans to develop powerful ecosystems. We are confident that these ecosystems will provide meaningful support to regional start-ups and researchers bringing innovative healthcare products and services out of their labs to the market”, said Roel Kamerling, Senior Programme Developer at TU Delft.
In 2022 the following teams participated in the EIT Health DRIVE programme:
- Digital Innovation Zone, Romania
- The Trentino Innovation Hub Foundation (HIT), Italy
- Imaguru, Lithuania
- Tech-Park Kaunas, Lithuania
- North West Regional Development Agency, Romania
- Step Ri – Science and Technology Park of the University of Rijeka, Croatia
„The ultimate aim of EIT Health’s DRIVE programme is contributing to the development of regional innovation valleys, one of the focuses of the New European Innovation Agenda, across Central, Eastern and Southern Europe. It facilitates knowledge sharing and provides regional players with the opportunity to learn from best practices in more developed innovation ecosystems in order to accelerate the development of such programmes in countries that are more moderate innovators”, said Mónika Tóth, Regional Innovation Scheme (RIS) director at EIT Health InnoStars. She added that organisations that took part in the programme will be eligible to apply for implementation support, funding and mentoring in 2023 to realise the designed start-up support programmes.
The applications for EIT Health DRIVE 2023 are now open: apply here.