Fintech and blockchain: new directions in European integration

During last decade, the blockchain industry (as well as that of crypto) has experiences a rapid growth; the speed of development has increased notably over the past few years. The industry and its growth are often analysed through market capitalization, trading volume and other financial metrics (there are already over a hundred different crypto-currencies); while […]

European projects in innovative energy and clean technology

Under the third round of awards under the Innovation Fund, the EU invests over €1.8 billion in 17 large-scale innovative clean-tech projects. Grants will help bringing breakthrough technologies to the market in energy-intensive industries, hydrogen, renewable energy, carbon capture and storage infrastructure, as well as in manufacturing key components for energy storage and renewables. The […]

Hydrogen energy through innovative technologies: new Commission’s plan

For the first time ever, the EU made public a European hydrogen initiative (called IPCEI Hy2Tech) along the Union’s projects of “common European interest”. It is aimed at developing innovative technologies for the hydrogen value chain to decarbonise industrial processes and mobility. In the project’s development and first industrial deployment of breakthrough hydrogen technologies 35 […]

Modernising European higher education (part I)

The EU provides states with both advice and support for high quality and inclusive education. These efforts are aimed at giving students urgently needed knowledge and skills for adequate response to new challenges affected by globalisation and technological change. These challenges are to be incorporated into national education policies in order to tackle the needs […]

European Payments Initiative: learning from previous mistakes

The European Payments Initiative, EPI was initially meant to develop joint payments frameworks rather than searching for a balancing instrument in interoperability of heterogeneous domestic solutions. However, the EPI has been under severe scrutiny since the opt-out of several European banks. The EPI could still play a vital role in stimulating EU’s payment system and […]

New solution in renewable energy: floating offshore wind farms

The European Investment Bank has announced the conclusion of three financing agreements (28.06.2022), with the support of the EU and guaranteed by the European Fund for Strategic Investments, EFSI for installing three floating offshore wind farms off the French Mediterranean coast. These projects will help accelerate energy transition in France and foster procurement of a […]

Tourism in EU: vital socio-economic sector facing modern challenges

Perspective tourism and travel has to follow three main directions: be resilient, digital and sustainable; however, not all EU member states ready for such challenges. In June 2022, the Commission prepared an analysis of key figures and trends in European tourism, as well as existing and perspective ICT and digital tools in modern tourism’s triangle […]

Shaping European future: STARTS program for science and art cooperation

Art, culture and modern technology are actively entering the European integration process. Established six years ago, the program supports creation of regional centers (so-called “residences”) as catalysts of perspective cross-sectoral cooperation. It is expected that synergies between art, science and technology shall help in regional development on a social, ecological and economic level by boosting […]

Social agenda in European integration and development

In the EU’s development triangle, in the so-called “social market economy”, most vital is its social facet, which distinguishes “European capitalism” from some traditional western-liberal connotations. At the end of 2021, the European Commission adopted a new action plan on the social economy with concrete measures to “mobilise full potential of the social economy”.

New European Bauhaus: bridging art, culture and education with science and technology

In the beginning of May 2022, the Commission announced five selected projects for €25 million support in the so-called “lighthouse demonstrators” of the New European Bauhaus (NEB) projects. The announcement of the successful applicants does not constitute a formal commitment for funding: the Commission is currently negotiating grant agreements with the selected beneficiaries. The projects […]