ELER European Innovation Partnership for agricultural productivity and sustainability - project funding Hessen
The innovation model under the EIP-AGRI goes beyond speeding up the transfer from laboratory to practice (referred to as the "linear innovation model"). The EIP-AGRI adheres to the "interactive innovation model" which brings together specific actors (e.g. farmers, advisors, researchers, agribusinesses, etc) to work together in multi-actor projects to find a solution for a specific issue or developing a concrete opportunity. So-called Operational Groups (OG) conduct innovative projects aiming at finding practical solutions to problems or opportunities which European farmers and foresters are currently facing. OGs bring together partners with complementary knowledge generating new ideas and insights which could be easier put into practice. More than 3200 Operational Groups are planned by national and regional Rural Development Programmes for the period of 2014-2020. Such an approach will stimulate innovation from all sides and will also help to target the research agenda.
Operational Groups can benefit from networking and collaborating with organisations from outside their own project and from other regions or countries, such as other Operational Groups, research projects, farmers’ organisations or local authorities and European knowledge networks. Whether it is meeting at events or on farms, exchanging knowledge on similar topics over the phone, hearing about personal experiences in running innovation projects, or setting up a more formal collaboration agreement, Operational Groups can reap the benefits of national or international networking in different ways.