Wednesday, 12 June 2013

SusChem Materials Priorities: The Analysis Process

The process leading to the selection of SusChem’s priority topics in Materials for Horizon 2020 was the result of ongoing dialogue with stakeholders and value chain partners. Here the process is described more fully.

Advanced materials are defined as one of Europe’s Key Enabling Technologies (KETs) by the European Commission and have been a priority research theme for SusChem since its inception.

Recently, as part of its revised strategy, SusChem has grown its engagement with value chain partners to develop ‘through-the-value-chain’ initiatives that can make a significant impact at European level extending beyond single sectors or individual companies. This ‘innovation ecosystem’ approach has led to proposals for major Public-Private-Partnership initiatives (PPPs) such as SPIRE and BRIDGE.

In the materials area SusChem has adapted this way of working via its Materials Working Group to look at a value-chain approach to assess priorities for the field of advanced materials.

Priority analysis
The following three prioritised value chains were identified :
  • Automotive
  • Building Construction and Refurbishment
  • Energy Production and Storage
In addition the group identified the concept of circularity of material flows in the economy as an area of important cross-cutting organisational and technology development.

“The current, typical linear value chain approach of extraction – concentration – transformation – use – disposal is clearly unsustainable and developing a circular approach, where waste is used as a resource, is key to developing a more resource efficient and sustainable society,” comments Jacques Komornicki.

The whole analysis process searched for areas where chemistry-led projects can be pursued with a multi-stakeholder innovation approach. And where clear added value for a European-level – and EU-funded – effort can be demonstrated.

The analysis resulted in the identification of four provisional research, development and innovation topics that are considered to be key priorities for inclusion in early calls for Horizon 2020.

To obtain a copy of the full SusChem Materials Working Group report, please contact the SusChem secretariat. More information on how you can get be involved can be found in this article.

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