4InnoPipe is a project of the Zagreb School of Economics and Management realized within the initiative of the European Institute for Innovation and Technology, which is an integral part of Horizon 2020, the EU framework program for higher education institutions (EIT HEI Initiative), and belongs to the second group from the EIT HEI pilot project. Namely, the intention of this initiative is to help higher educational institutions build or improve the necessary capacities to enable high-quality teaching of innovation and entrepreneurship.
The goal of the project itself is to support and further develop academic innovation portfolios – innovation pipelines (‘4InnoPipe’), which consist of 4 parts: idea, invention, incubation and internationalization. The project’s innovation portfolio is focused on technologies that promote healthy people and the environment: foodtech, eco-innovations and sustainable medicines. For the implementation of the project, it was necessary to connect with the business community, and cooperation was established with the AGRIVI company, the PISAK Business Incubator, Fil Rouge Capital, HealthHub and Wespa Spaces, which will use their joint forces to achieve the planned results and chart a path for a positive continuation of the project. Upon completion of the project, ZŠEM will continue teaching, promoting the value of the project and connecting not only its students, but also academic and non-academic staff, start-ups and scale-ups.
4InnoPipe is divided into two phases. The first is already underway and will last until the end of 2022. The successful execution of the set goals from the first phase is the key to entering the second and last phase, which lasts 18 months. The goal of ZŠEM is to do what it knows best – to educate, but at the same time to continuously work on raising the quality of the education process related to entrepreneurship and innovation and general awareness of the importance of entrepreneurship and innovation, starting from its own institution. This means that they will educate their academic and administrative staff in this direction, but also enable the same for Croatian start-ups and scale-ups. Additionally, efforts will be made to expand the partnership in the international context, both of ZŠEM and consortia with other institutions, whether privately or publicly owned, as well as start-ups and potential investors. The plan is to extend this kind of practice long beyond the framework of the project itself, because strong entrepreneurship and innovation are the key to successful competition of the European continent on the global market.
Considering the global geo-economic and geo-political situation at the Zagreb School of Economics and Management, they believe that the aforementioned project will not only have a direct impact on the improvement and promotion of small and medium-sized enterprises, and thus the economy of the Republic of Croatia, but also the economies of the member countries of the project and thereby influence the improvement of the overall European economy.
ZŠEM has been continuously participating in numerous EU projects for a long time, either in the role of project manager or as a partner. The total value of the 4InnoPipe project is 1.2 million euros, which was distributed among five extremely strong partners over two years. In addition to ZŠEM, the project partners are the University of Helsinki, which is also the project manager, Reutlingen University from Germany, Academic University in Kyiv and Vertical from Finland.
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