The Foundation of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) was established in 2010 as a philanthropic, not-for-profit organisation under Dutch law.The EIT Foundation is a group of like-minded organisations dedicated to promoting a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship in Europe. Our goal is to enlarge the impact of the EIT, inventing the future by bringing together some of Europe's brightest minds at events, in youth talent programmes and similar initiatives.
The EIT Foundation is managed by a Board of talented professionals from a range of different sectors. They all have extensive experience in their field of expertise and share a genuine interest in advancing innovation across Europe.
Board members are appointed for a period of four years. Their mandate can be renewed once. In order to ensure synergies and complementarities between the Foundation and the EIT, the Board counts with two members from the EIT Governing Board. All Board members work on a voluntary basis and do not receive salary or any other form of financial reward for their activities.
A Secretariat assists the Board in carrying out the operational aspects of the Foundation's work.
In addition, a Strategic Committee makes recommendations to Foundation Board regarding the development and implementation of the Work Programme. Besides the Board members themselves, this committee counts with the CEOs of the EIT Foundation companies, the Secretary General, the EIT Director and a representative of the European Commission.
The EIT Foundation Work Programme reflects the Foundation's determination to promote the development of people's innovation and entrepreneurial skills, and to disseminate innovative practices across Europe.
The Work Programme focuses on the following three priorities:
The actions set forth are implemented in cross-cutting areas of interest to the whole innovation community and are intended to benefit a wide group of players, independently of their sector of activity. They should bring about a positive impact on the European society and its citizens.
The EIT Foundation Work Programme is proposed, managed, financed and implemented directly by the EIT Foundation community. The Foundation follows a cash-in/ cash-out model supporting concrete projects. It does not act as a fundraiser or conceive its operations on financial endowment (capital invested to generate and annual return).
The Work Programme of the EIT Foundation is implemented via three Working Groups:
WG1 organises paid internships for higher education graduates and candidates for post-graduate Masters and PhDs. Internships are offered across the European branches of the EIT Foundation companies and within a wide range of different departments (e.g. R&D, IT, manufacturing, logistics, customer services, communication, external relations, HR). The programme aims to provide the interns with experience-based knowledge in their field of interest and to develop their innovation and entrepreneurial skills. The long-term objective is to contribute to address Europe's high youth unemployment rates, by facilitating the integration of graduates in the workplace.
The Foundation is now running the second edition of the internship programme.
The leader of Working Group 1 is Agfa Gevaert.
Innovation and entrepreneurship training programme
WG2 is responsible for the 'Young Leaders Group', an entrepreneurial and leadership training programme gathering around 30 young European academics, entrepreneurs and business representatives. Under the direction of an experienced team from business and academia, the young leaders ponder over a specific innovation challenge facing Europe. Drawing on the diversity in their academic, professional and sectorial backgrounds, they produce a set of recommendations on how this challenge can be overcome, and present these to innovation stakeholders at EU, national and regional level.
The first edition of the 'Young Leaders Group' focused on 'data-driven innovation'. It was launched in November 2012 and culminated when the young leaders presented their main recommendations at the EIT Foundation Innovation Forum in March 2013. You can consult the Young Leaders' recommendations here.
The second edition of the 'Young Leaders Group' was launched in March 2014. The topic of this year's edition is 'future learning environments: triggering innovation and growth'. The programme includes a 'kick-off meeting' at Alcatel-Lucent, virtual learning platforms, and an autumn academy' at Imperial College London. The programme culminates with the presentations at the Innovation Forum. For more information about the second edition of the Young Leaders Group click here.
The leader of Working Group 2 is EY (Ernst and Young)
WG3 organises the EIT Foundation Innovation Forum, a high-level event that fosters open discussions and exchange of ideas and good practices among Europe's key innovation players. The long-term objective is to develop a pan-European international network of stakeholders engaged in innovation, research, education and business development.
The first EIT Foundation Innovation Forum took place on March 26th 2013. Under the headline 'data- driven innovation: the new imperative for growth' more than 200 selected participants discussed how to leverage the economic, social and cultural potential of data to kick-start growth and jobs in Europe. You can read more about the forum and see the keynotes and presentations here.
The second Annual Forum is scheduled to take place in January 2015 and will address the potential of future learning environments.
A platform for long-term collaboration
The EIT Foundation alumni network gathers the participants from the 'Young Leaders Group' and the internship programme. The objective of the network is to facilitate long-term collaboration between the alumni, by providing them a platform from which they can continue information exchange, good practices sharing, peer-to-peer advice, and discussion on new business ideas. In addition, the members of the alumni network serve as ambassadors of the EIT Foundation, and contribute with advice and input on the organisation of future programmes.
The EIT Foundation currently gathers ten companies from different sectors and origine, all leading in their fields.
Should you wish to be part of the EIT Foundation's community, please contact us
The EIT and the EIT Foundation are two separate entities with different legal nature. The EIT is an EU body accountable to the European Parliament and the European Council. The EIT Foundation is a not-for- profit independent organisation formally established as a charity under Dutch law.
The EIT and the EIT Foundation have been designed to complement each other. Whilst the EIT is designed to convert knowledge into business in order to achieve a direct economic impact, the EIT Foundation has a social remit and a philanthropic responsibility towards society.
The EIT Foundation aims to enhance the EIT’s social outreach and addresses challenges related to innovation, education and entrepreneurship in areas beyond the KICs' excellence focus.
Through its Work Programme, the EIT Foundation supports the EIT’s mission concerning, particularly, the progress of talent, the development of people’s innovation and entrepreneurship skills, and the dissemination of good practices across Europe.
All actions contained in the Work Programme are situated in cross-cutting areas beyond the specific societal challenges addressed by the EIT and its KICs. The EIT Foundation actions benefit a wide group of actors independently of their fields of specialisation.
The EIT Foundation aims at generating social impact through Corporate Social Responsibility. Being part of the EIT Foundation provides a concrete opportunity to better position your organisation in its Corporate Social Responsibility strategy, by visibly contributing to overcoming European innovation challenges.
As a member of the EIT Foundation you will actively participate in the definition and implementation of the Work Programme. You will gain privileged access to the outcome of the Foundations activities as well as networking opportunities with key business players and decision-makers from all around Europe.
Being registered as a charity organisation in the Netherlands, the EIT Foundation also offers attractive financial advantages and a flexible working environment.
Your involvement in and contribution to the EIT Foundation Work Programme is adaptable to your organisation's capacities, meaning you can join the EIT Foundation community at any time without constraints.
If you are interested in joining the EIT Foundation or have any questions regarding membership, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Whilst the EIT benefits from financial contribution from the EU, the EIT Foundation is not financially supported by the EU or by national budgets. The EIT Foundation relies on contributions from the Foundation companies to implement its activities.
The companies can contribute to the EIT Foundation both financially and in-kind, through their expertise, knowledge and experience. They may also support the EIT Foundation mission by making staff available or by providing logistics assistance (e.g. meeting facilities) for the setting up of Working Groups and the development of activities.
For the time being, the EIT Foundation is exclusively composed of private organisations. It is, however, open to any stakeholder sharing the mission and objectives of the EIT Foundation.
For further details on how to become involved in the EIT Foundation's community, please contact us.
Belgian donors can make their donations on following account:Bank account : 000-0000004-04
Bulgarian donors can support the Fund on following account :BCAF – Bulgarian Charities Aid Foundation
Les donateurs français doivent libeller leurs chèques à :
Fondation de France/500477/ TGE-EIT Foundation -NL. Les chèques sont à adresser à Fondation de France, 40 av Hoche 75008 PARIS- à l'attention de Noura Kihel.Contact name: Noura Kihel
Pour les versements :Relevé d'Identité Bancaire
German donors can support the EITF on following account :account holder: Maecenata Stiftung.
Please take contact with Bata Boglarka before making the donation in HungaryBata Boglárka
Irish donors can support the Fund on following account:Account Name : The Community Foundation for Ireland Ltd
Italian donors can make their donations on following account:Associazione VITA Giving Europe Onlus
Due to the « circulaire du directeur des contributions L.I.R. – n° 112/2 from July 20 2009, donors living in Luxembourg can make their donations directly on the Dutch account of EITF and will benefit from income tax deductibility in Luxembourg if you send them the requested Form in Luxembourg
Donors can make their donations on the following account:IBAN NL79 RABO 0160 3148 01
Polish donors can support the Fund on following account :Beneficiary: Fundacja dla Polski (Foundation for Poland)
Please take contact with Rozalia Csaki before making the donation in Romania.Rozalia Csaki
Swiss donors can make their donation on one of the following accounts:Bank: UBS SA, PO Box, CH-1211 Geneva 2
Donors living in the UK should first contact the Charities Aid Foundation before making their donationsContact name :Keith Jefferies
Donors can make their donations on the following account:IBAN NL79 RABO 0160 3148 01
Christian Jourquin has spent his entire career in Solvay, including 10 years on the Executive Committee. He graduated in Commercial Engineering at the Solvay Business School of the Université Libre de Bruxelles (Brussels, Belgium). In addition he graduated from the International Senior Management Program of the Harvard Business School (USA). In 1971, he started his career as an Attaché to the Finance Department of Solvay at the Italian Headquarters in Milan. Between 1980 and 1990, he managed Solvay Duphar in the Netherlands, which represented a large part of the international pharmaceutical activities of Solvay. Between 1990 and 1996, he worked for Solvay at the Iberian peninsula (Spain and Portugal), Solvay Interox in 1996 and the Processing Sector of the group from 1997 to 2000. He was General Manager of the Chemicals Sector at Solvay SA until April 2006, and from May 2006 to May 2012 he acted as Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Executive Committee of Solvay SA. He is presently Honorary Chairman of the Executive Committee of Solvay SA.
Sir Colin began his academic career as a Lecturer at the University of Sheffield (1965-69) and the University of Manchester (1970-73). He returned to Oxford in 1973 as Fellow and Tutor in Modern History at Balliol College, before moving to the University of Chicago as Professor of History in 1990. At Chicago he served as Chairman of the Department of History and then Dean of the Division of the Social Sciences. In 1994 he became Master of Balliol College, Oxford, a position he held for six years.
He was the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford from 1997 to 2004. He has recently retired as Warden of Rhodes Trust, the charitable organisation responsible for bringing some of the world’s finest scholars to Oxford. During his seven years as Vice-Chancellor, Sir Colin led the modernisation of the University and saw it ranked fifth in the world, outranked only by the four leading US institutions. During his term of office Sir Colin also established and chaired a Working Party on Access, which reported in 1999. In 2001 he became the first non-US trustee of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. He is also Education Adviser to the State Governor of Guangdong Province, China. Sir Colin chairs the Board’s Investment Committee and he is a member of the Remuneration Committee of Warden of Rhodes Trust.
He is a specialist in the history of 18th-century France, principally the French revolution.
Prof. Frans van Vught is a Member of the Group of Societal Policy Advisors (GSPA) of the European Commission and Member of the Executive Board of the European University Association (EUA). From 1997 to 2005 he was Rector and President of the University of Twente. Before that he was the founding director of the Center for Higher Education Policy Studies (CHEPS), a higher education research center of the University of Twente.
In the Netherlands, Frans van Vught is Member of the National Innovation Platform (presided by the Prime Minister) and of the National Social Economic Council. In the past he was among others, Member of the National Council on Education, President of the Board of Governors of the International Institute of Aerospace Survey and Earth Sciences and Chairman of the Dutch National Foundation for the Advancement of Science and Technology.
Internationally, he is a Member of the University Grants Committee of Hong Kong and the German “Akkreditierungsrat”.
Van Vught is an expert in higher education policy and management. He has published widely (and in several languages) on these issues and has been consultant for many international organisations, governments and universities. He holds several academic awards and is honorary doctor of the University of Ghent, Belgium.
Born October 27, 1947. A Dutch national, appointed as Non-executive Director of Shell Company with effect from July 2009. Previously, he was Chief Executive since October 2004. He was appointed President of Royal Dutch Petroleum Company in 2000, having been a Managing Director since 1997. He was a Director of Shell Canada Limited from 2003 until 2005. He was named Chief Executive in 2004 and led Shell through major change, simplifying governance and organization, while clarifying accountabilities. In 2009-2010 Jeroen was Vice-Chairman of a group of experts who advised for a new Strategic Concept for NATO. He was World President of the Society of Chemical Industry from 2002 to 2004. From 2000-2004 he served as a supervisory board member of The Dutch Central Bank. He is Advisor to Oman since 2009. He chaired ‘Platform Beta Techniek’, a governmental institute promoting education in science and technology from 2009 – 2011. He was Vice-Chairman and Senior Independent Director of Unilever (which includes Unilever N.V. and Unilever plc) to May 2011. Nowadays (besides his above mentioned role for Shell Company) Jeroen is Chairman of the Supervisory Boards of Koninklijke Philips Electronics N.V. and of ING Group. He also has various roles in several foundations and charities.
Peter Olesen is Chair of the Board of the Danish Council for Strategic Research. He spent 25 years as Research Director, VP R&D and Executive VP/CSO in four major international food and food ingredients companies: Danisco A/S (DK) 1983-93; Sandoz Seeds Ltd. (France) 1994-95; CPKelco/Hercules Inc. (DK & US) 1996-2000; Chr.Hansen A/S (DK) 2000-2008. He has held 3 appointments as affiliated professor at the University of Copenhagen: Plant Sciences 1986-91 and 1993-98; Functional Foods 2008-13. In addition, he was employed as part-time MSO professor at the Department of Plant Biology and Biotechnology at LIFE, University of Copenhagen 2009-11. Today, he is manager of his own company, ActiFoods, that offers counselling and knowledge sharing to companies and research institutions within food and health