Innovation has been identified in the European agenda as a top priority to boost the European economy and competition in the global markets by using breakthrough and/or scientific knowledge in key areas of industry. The “Innovation Union” is one of the seven flagship initiatives of the Europe 2020 strategy for a smart, sustainable and inclusive economy.

As part of this strategy, several European initiatives and projects have been initiated and are ongoing in order to link innovation with economic growth and better quality of life in Europe. The Innovation Union contains over thirty action points including ground-breaking proposals like the European Innovation Partnerships.

IMA-Europe has become a very active partner on some of the main European innovation platforms.

European Innovation Partnership (EIP) on Raw Materials

The EIP on Raw Materials consists in bringing together the public and private efforts at regional, national and EU levels in research, development and innovation (RDI). For more information, see our page on Raw Materials.

IMA-Europe is involved in several innovation projects and raw material commitments under the EIP RM, some of which co-funded under Horizon 2020, such as:

- MINGUIDE Project (2016-2019): development of a comprehensive "Minerals Policy Guide" of EU and national legislation on minerals and related areas in 28 Member States. IMA Europe is part of the Advisory Board.

- MINLEX (2016): Study on the legal framework for mineral extraction and permitting procedures for exploration and exploitation in the EU commissioned by the European Commission.

- MINATURA (2015-2018): A Horizon 2020 project defining and safeguarding "mineral deposits of public importance" to ensure future best use. IMA Europe is a Project Partner. 

- MINLAND (2018-2021): A H2020 project following up on the MINATURA Project seeking to integrate mineral resources policies into land-use planning. IMA Europe is a Project Partner.

- MICA (Mineral Intelligence Capacity Analysis): A H2020 project which aims to identify and define stakeholder groups and their raw material intelligence needs; consolidate relevant data on primary and secondary raw materials; investage needs for European mineral policy development; and link the derived intelligence to the EU Raw Materials Information System (RMIS) developed by the EU Joint Research Centre. 

Association Sustainable Process Through Resource & Energy Efficiency (A-SPIRE)

A-SPIRE gathers 50 industry and research stakeholders willing to form the largest European Private Public Partnership dedicated to innovation in resource and energy efficiency in the process industries. For more information, go to our page on SPIRE.

STOICISM (Sustainable Technologies for Calcined Industrial Minerals in Europe)

STOICISM is a European consortium project consisting of 17 companies, universities, associations and R&D institutes. The aim of this Research Development and Innovation consortium is to develop technologies, design and integration to reduce impact on the environment, contribute to the sustainability of European mineral resources and exploiting new, high value-added mineral products.

The RDI technologies will be tested for the calcination of minerals, notably diatomaceous earth (DE), perlite and clay. Eventually, the processes implemented will easily be transferable to many other industrial minerals. The STOICISM project will benefit from a FP7 (Seventh Framework Programme) grant. IMA contribution in the project will mainly consist in disseminating the initiative to the concerned audiences. For more information, go to our page on STOICISM