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Research and innovation

Identifying barriers to innovation

Innovation Deals help innovators who face regulatory obstacles by setting up agreements with stakeholders and public authorities. How they work, signed deals aims, news and contact details.

What Innovation Deals are

Innovation Deals are voluntary cooperation agreements between the EU, innovators, and national, regional and local authorities.

The objective of an Innovation Deal is to gain an in-depth understanding of how an EU rule or regulation works in practice. 

If the rule or regulation is found to be an obstacle to innovations, the deal will make it visible and feed into possible further action.


Background to Innovation Deals

The Commission Communication Closing the loop – An EU action plan for the Circular Economy introduced the concept of Innovation Deals.

They help to form a more modern and responsive administration in line with the Commission's Better Regulation Agenda.

They are inspired by the Green Deal Programme in the Netherlands, where a large number of Green Deals are successfully supporting the national Green Growth policy by providing regulatory clarity.

The Commission does not fund the preparation or implementation of Innovation Deals. 


Innovation Deals in practice

A call for the expressions of interest for Innovation Deals on Circular Economy was open beween May and September 2016.

Any innovators who wanted to introduce a circular economy-related product or service to the market but encountered a perceived regulatory obstacle was invited to apply.

The evaluation process finished in late 2016 and the implementation of the selected Innovation Deals began in early 2017. 

The Innovation Deals process will be evaluated in 2018.


Signed Innovation Deals



Don't hesitate to RTD-Innovation-Principleatec [dot] europa [dot] eu (ask us any questions) you might have.

  1. 26 May 2016

    Opening of the call for Expression of Interest

  2. 15 September 2016

    Closing of the call for Expression of Interest

  3. October – December 2016

    Selection of Innovation Deals

  4. beginning of 2017

    Signature of Innovation Deals

  5. mid 2018

    Evaluation of the pilot