The innovation model under the EIP-AGRI goes beyond speeding up the transfer from laboratory to practice. The EIP-AGRI adheres to the “interactive innovation model” which brings together specific actors (e.g. farmers, advisors, researchers, businesses, etc) to work together in multi-actor projects to find a solution for a specific issue or developing a concrete opportunity.
In these so-called Operational Groups, new insights and ideas will generate and existing tacit knowledge will be built into focused solutions that are quicker put into practice. Such an approach will stimulate innovation from all sides and will also help to target the research agenda.
>Operational Groups are groups at local level with people from different backgrounds – such as farmers, researchers, advisers, businesses, NGOs – that are set up to find an innovative solution to a shared problem or to test an innovative idea in practice. The results and knowledge developed by an Operational Group must be shared via the EIP-AGRI network so it can benefit the entire sector.
The EU Rural Development Policy provides particular opportunities for the setting up and funding of Operational Groups during the period 2014-2020. This is done via the Rural Development Programmes which each Member State or region develops. These programmes can offer financial support to Operational Groups that want to develop, test and apply innovative approaches.
At present time, more than 300 Operational Groups are running in EU. PANACEA will contact and engage those Operational groups focusing on Non-food Crops in the Network value chain events at national and EU level.