Enable State Administration to be an Active Contributors in process of risk absorption and risk reduction Through IPR and state aid

Project coordinator

Tomaž Lutman, Jozef Stefan Institute




What is the idea behind the ATTRACT Project?

Research question

How to simplify and optimize public investments into (i) research and technology infrastructures; (ii) background and foreground intellectual property rights; considering state aid regulations?

Project at a glance

  • Review of the critical points of joint research infrastructure usage between research organizations and the industry, and the creation and transfer of background or foreground intellectual property rights in connection with state aid rules.
  • Development of the procedures for more efficient and longer-term cooperation of companies with the research organizations, in particular for the ones receiving possible state aid.
  • Assessment of internationally established intellectual property valuation systems.

Public summary

The ATTRACT European Scientific Research Infrastructures (ERIs) have formed an ERI Innovation Ecosystem (ERI-IE) as an essential tool in boosting industry-academia collaboration. ERI-IE operates in the global competitive environment wherein technological development is one of the few competitive levers capable of added value creation.

The state administration tries to encourage industry-academia (co)operation with financial incentives. Still, it encounters rules and legislation to protect competition in the free market, imposed within state-aid rules. The regulations, however, do allow the granting of aid within substantive exceptions (e.g. particular importance for development), special conditions (advance notification of state aid to the EC and its consent), or in a simplified form up to a certain amount (de-minimis rule).

Due to limited recognition of state-aid rules, the allocation of funding and intellectual property rights (IPR) lacks management in view of state-aid restrictions. Ambiguities result in state investments into industry-academia collaboration or research/technology infrastructure (RI/TI infrastructure) usage being limited and complicated.

The provision of state aid and understanding or lack of knowledge thereof may thus support or slow down, respectively, such investments and the smooth transition of technology through TRL levels with the involvement of ERI-IE.

Improving the understanding of state aid rules in financing research, RI/TI’s use and IPR transfer procedures within ERIs collaborative projects with industry would improve incentives efficiency for research to the economy transition.

In ExSACT, we will explore the effect of the state administration on financing research, RI/TI infrastructures and IPR transfer procedures through state aid rules abiding (RI/TI and IPR) management. A seamlessly integrated ERI, supporting research and economy from knowledge creation through defining IP to commercialization with proper funding, in view of state aid limitations, would enhance investments, lower risk and enable involved actors (research, economy) to bring more science to everyday use.

A better understanding of RI/TI use and IPR contractual issues concerning state aid rules will not only be easier to implement by the state administrations of the ERI-IEs. It will also clarify the concept and rules of state aid to the beneficiaries of funded projects.