THA News

New Committee for External Grants takes off

On 2 July 2019, the kick off meeting of the new THA Committee was delivered via Zoom to present the scope of the committee, its members,operational procedures and envisaged goals.

External Grant Committee Members


Dr Adrian Solomon, South East European Research Centre – SEERC, Greece             *email address protected*

Committee Members:

Maria Josè Herrero Villa, University Carlos III de Madrid, Spain                   *email address protected*

Klaus Sailer, SCE, Germany                                                     *email address protected*

Angela Pulvirenti, FAST, Italy *email address protected*

Dimitris Corpakis, THA, Belgium *email address protected*

Panayiotis Ketikidis, SEERC, Greece *email address protected*

Manuelita Mancini, Fondazione Brodolini, Italy *email address protected*

Justin Alex-Berg, San Paulo University, Brazil *email address protected*

Emanuele Fiore, CNR, Italy *email address protected*


Maria Laura Fornaci, Triple Helix Association, Italy *email address protected*

Mária Baracsi, Triple Helix Association, Hungary *email address protected*

The External Grants Committee (EGC) can rely on nine active members from Europe and Latin America, supported by the THA Program Manager and Executive Director, who are committed to scout funding opportunities for supporting new joint research and projects related to emerging themes such us, art and humanities for regional development and urban regeneration, cultural and creative industries, responsible research and innovation, and other cross-disciplinary topics.

For more information on the action plan and to be involved in the Committee, please contact
Maria Baracsi*email address protected*.


Italian National Research Council (CNR) Partners with Laval University for Triple Helix Cross-Border Cooperation

The Director of the International Mixed Unit between CNR and University Laval for “Chemical and Biomolecular Research on Microbiome and its Impact on Metabolic Health and Nutrition” (UMI-MicroMeNu,, Vincenzo Di Marzo, of the ICB-CNR, and the delegate of the President of the CNR in the UMI Steering Committee, Emanuele Fiore, of the IPCB-CNR, met on 30 June 2019 in Ottawa with the Ambassador of Italy to Canada, H E Claudio Taffuri, and the President and CEO of the Canada Foundation for Innovation, Dr Roseanne O’Reilly Runte.

Both Ambassador Taffuri and Dr O’Reilly Runte praised the work carried out so far by the UMI-MicroMeNu and the model of interaction between research, institutions and industry that it exemplifies, and assured their support for its future initiatives, starting with the participation, in person or by their delegates, in the meeting scheduled for 29 August 2019 in Quebec City, during which the coordinators of the nine bilateral projects between University Laval and the CNR, co-funded by the UMI, will be officially presented.

The meeting will aim at exploring the possibility of participating in future European projects within the next Horizon Europe 2021-2027 research program.

Express your Views on the Future of R&I – Online Consultation on Horizon Europe

The European Commission has opened an online consultation for the future objectives of research and innovation, being a part of the preparation process for the next Multiannual Financial Framework.  The co-designing process will ensure that different stakeholders’ interests and ideas will be taken into consideration.  The input provided will be included in the preparation of a ‘Strategic Plan’ for Horizon Europe, which will then guide the work programmes and calls for proposals for Horizon Europe in the first four years (2021-2024).

The co-designing process has been enriched by the European Research and Innovation Days ( to be held in Brussels on 24-26 September 2019.

The consultation is public and available for everyone interested in research and innovation.  To take part in the consultation, fill in the survey at before 8 September 2019.

Regional Innovation Scoreboard 2019 now Available

The Regional Innovation Scoreboard 2019 has been published, and this edition is more detailed than previously –

It is a very helpful tool, developed by the European Commission Directorate-General for internal market, industry, entrepreneurship and SMEs (DG GROW), for analysing the geographical data of every European region.  It gives an extensive view of the European economic landscape in every field and topic.

First 17 European Universities projects have been announced

Seventeen European University projects involving 114 higher education institutions from the EU have been selected to facilitate cooperation of researchers, staff, and students, by creating inter-universities campuses.  The overall goal of the European Universities initiative ( is to develop a common long-term strategy based on excellence and sustainability, where students and researchers can benefit from mobility and exchange of knowledge.  The award criteria includes, among other societal dimension, universities and contribution to regional development, for example through the implementation of Smart Specialisation Strategies.  The alliances will start operating in September 2019, and the second Erasmus+ call will be announced in October 2019.

The first call aims at boosting higher education by pooling the expertise and resources from partner institutions.  While some alliances cover a wide range of disciplines, others are focusing on smart specialisation, the societal role of universities, or urban coastal sustainability.  Each of them is involving approximately seven higher education institutions from all around Europe, leading to new partnerships.  The seventeen alliances include a broad range of partners: universities of applied sciences, technical universities, universities of fine arts, but also research-intensive universities.  The Commission plans to scale up the initiative in the next Erasmus programme for 2021-2027. factsheet_2019_final.pdf



Urban Governance Toolbox for Climate Resilient Cities


Climate change represents a socio-economic challenge for cities. Technological and data driven solutions are necessary to upgrade backbone systems of cities such as energy, water grids, and transportation, health and sustainably building and infrastructures. In German cities these systems are frequently challenged by extreme weather events such as heavy rain and storms. In addition, heat islands in urban agglomeration increase the risk of fires, negatively affect the health of citizen and reduce the attractiveness of urban locations. Actions for climate protection (current) and climate change adoption (future) in cities are gaining importance. Initiatives are projected in sustainable building, mobility and sustainable use of land, forest and biodiversity, water management as well as renewable energy. Urban governance models need to master the interconnectivity of initiatives, integration of interdisciplinary experts, and stakeholder driven implementation. The project consortia will jointly create and test governance models in two real labs in the German cities Halle (Saale) and Mannheim. SMARTilience contributes to the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals.



SMARTilience addresses the connectivity of these issues and integrates best practice in a system-oriented, proactive and flexible way. In a triple helix setting and real city laboratory with a syntegration® design the project consortia simulates a multilevel and multi-stakeholder governance experiment that employs expert knowledge, foresight techniques and scenario-based decision making with Geographical Information Systems (GIS) data.

The objective is to develop an integrated socio technical governance tool with science, experts and city administration and to practice new routines in a learning research approach. The Urban Governance Toolbox will be a prototype for:

  • Standard operational procedures in city planning, integrative city management and climate governance
  • Expert and citizen participation in terms of knowledge, values and routines addressing feasibility and rapid implementation
  • Exploitation and integration of existent city data
  • Enabling of decision makers and administration to transform big data into smart data
  • Fact finding mission in regard to best practices and IT-support for decision making
  • Best in class knowledge in climate resilience



SMARTilience is funded by the German Ministry of Education and Research, BMBF in the Program Research for Sustainable Development (FONA). The Program funds the development of decision-making tools for future oriented action and delivers innovative solutions for a sustainable society. With this third framework program (FONA3), the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) aims to support sustainability research in Germany.








Interdisciplinary Agro Science for Soil Protection and Food Safety. A Participatory Governance Model in Regional Innovation



The German Ministry of Education and Research, BMBF will fund the projects of the initiative “Physics for Food” in the framework of the WIR!-Programme (Transformation of Regions) in the period from 2019 to 2022. In 2018 the consortia developed a joint and highly integrated project strategy. Members of the consortia are the research institute INP (Leibniz Institute for Plasma Science and Technology), University of Applied Sciences Hochschule Neubrandenburg, local firms, and experts in physical process technologies, agro science and food science. The consortia players work in a triple helix setting of science, industry, policy makers and citizen and farmers. Strategy development and implementation follows a systematic strategy process suitable for regional innovation systems.


The research consortia “Physics for Food” is situated in the agrarian region Mecklenburg-Vorpommern in the North of Germany. Together consortia members will address the interdisciplinary research field of Physics, Plant Biology, Agro Sciences and Engineering Science, enhanced by other experts, local farmers and seed producers. In a joint attempt „Physics for Food“ will develop and test innovative process technology to reduce chemical plant protection products that are harmful to bees, and to improve the durability of seeds in an environmentally safe manner without yield decrease. At the same time and in collaboration with local universities the consortia intends to support the emergence of start-up firms and to provide innovation input for the mature agro industry in the lagging region. Not only will the innovation cluster facilitate new firm formation in incubators, it also aims at the development of citizen and farmer driven business models and engages in social innovation such as corporative local food production. Therefore participatory governance models for the agro and food industry are integrated elements of the strategic initiative. These models offer a new professional perspective and provide incentives for students to stay in the region.


There is a high demand for profitable and effective farming on the premises of pesticide free production in order to meet SDG and new EU law as well as consumer preferences. The Bundesland Mecklenburg-Vorpommern tested approximately 120.000 ha farmable land applying the new pesticide-free technology in a small-scale pilot. The consortia needs to upscale the production in order to meet target costing objectives in a very competitive European and global market. Apart from soil protection cold plasma and other physical methods show first promising results in lab trials in that way that the treatment increases plant fertility and enhances plant resilience against viral, bacterial and fungal diseases.







Corresponding authors:
Professor Klaus-Dieter Weltmann
E-Mail: *email address protected*
Professor Gerd Teschke
E-Mail: *email address protected*



Published by the Triple Helix Association  –  ISSN 2281-4515


Print Friendly, PDF & Email