EASIER project which assists ICT SMEs in participating in the EU Programme projects comes to an end. During the 30 months project, TAGES has assisted approximately 250 ICT SMEs in participating in the project proposals and developing project ideas to be submitted to the EU funded programmes. TAGES engaged also in the project financial management at the end of the project with a budget reallocation.
EASIER, Engaging regional SMEs within the ICT sector in EU research, project aimed to increase the competitiveness and research capacity of ICT SMEs inEurope. The project partners provided support to the ICT SMEs in participation in European research networks and research programmes in different European countries: Turkey, Croatia, Cyprus, Greece, Slovenia, Czech Republic, Poland, Spain, Portugal, Denmark, UK and Norway. Project partners hosted many organizations such as training, support and networking events targeted at SMEs in 3 years.
A European database of ICT SMEs is formed where the ICT SMEs represent themselves and introduce their project ideas to other stakeholders. TAGES has assisted the Turkish SMEs in the process from the idea to engagement in European RTD activities. TAGES together with Turkish Informatics Foundation and TUBITAK has audited Turkish SMEs and introduced the ICT SMEs in the database, motivated the SMEs by networking events, workshops, informed them about the recent technological developments of the sector and assisted the companies in developing project proposals and participating in the EU wide projects.
Due to the one-to-one consulting activities held within EASIER project many ICT SMEs became aware of the EU R&D funding opportunities and started to involve in EU R&D projects. EASIER Project witnessed many success stories. For instance Vizyon Net, a Turkish software development company established in 1999, located in Tübitak Marmara Research Centre Technology Development zone started to involve in EASIER activities at the beginning of 2007. The company had been first registered in the EASIER database and then has started to be registered in EU R&D networks such as Cordis, Idealist and Detect-it and the national information e-groups of TUBITAK. In the meantime Vizyon Net came up with a project idea on ‘Design and Implementation of a Workflow Management System for Telecommunication Service Management Environment’ and started to seek for partners in order to develop its project idea. TAGES supported Vizyon Net to model its project idea for FP7 but finally the company decided to submit its project idea to the First Call of new launched
EUROSTARS Programme. Vizyon Net created a consortium of 4 companies also with the involvement of the south Greek EASIER company EXIS. EXIS contribute to the project with its expertise in telecommunication sector. The project proposal submitted to the first Call of EUROSTARS Programme with the deadline of February 8th, 2008. The results of the call will be announced in April 2008. Vizyon Net is a success story from Turkey as they had had no idea about EU R&D Programmes before their involvement in EASIER activities. Nevertheless the company having experience in National Funding Programmes became easily familiar with EU cooperation system and became successful in the preparation of the project, finding partners, solving IPR issues and maintaining relations with the funding authority.
Another important yield of EASIER Project is that TAGES also involved in the project as the partner supporting the project coordinator in Project Final Management activities. In this framework, TAGES coordinates the works of 16 partners from 12 countries in order to finalize the project and to prepare the financial report.
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