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European Innovation Council and SMEs Executive Agency (EISMEA)
Call for proposalsOpen

Interregional Innovation Investments Strand 2a (I3-2024-INV2a)


Publication date
Opening date
Deadline model
Deadline date
5 December 2024, 17:00 (CET)



The Interregional Innovation Investments (I3) Instrument is a funding instrument under the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) regulation (article 13). It aims at supporting interregional innovation projects which bring innovative ideas to a mature investment level, ready for commercialisation and scale-up. 

The general objective of the I3 instrument is to promote innovation, and innovation diffusion, and the reinforcement of EU and regional value chains, through cooperation on the basis of shared priorities and complementary capabilities. 

Project proposals should aim at supporting predefined portfolios of interrelated and mature interregional innovation investments in different regions and based on shared or complementary Smart specialisation (S3) priority areas; and to support the demonstration, market uptake and scaling up of mature innovations to be brought on the market. 



This call for proposals (Strand 2a) supports the integration of innovation actors from less developed regions in developing EU value chains while creating local opportunities for innovation and smart economic transformation in regions with shared (or complementary) smart specialisation areas. 

The objective of the I3 Instrument Strand 2a call for proposals is to support interregional innovation investments by offering consortia of innovation actors from the quadruple helix ecosystems the necessary financial and advisory support to bring their innovations to a more mature level, ready for commercialisation and scale-up, while bridging and reducing the innovation divide in Europe with a strong cohesion policy focus of integrating all regions and in particular the less developed regions into European value chains.  


Thereby, applications under this call seek to facilitate: 

  • the support of innovation actors with investment ideas that are ready to be developed into mature business cases;  
  • the identification of new regional technological domains and market opportunities with the EU priorities and bridging the gap between the supply and demand sides to help innovation ecosystems overcome market failures;
  • the creation of new value chains in less developed regions and the integration into interregional and cross-border value chains with more developed regions; 
  • the application and the deployment of innovative technologies and solutions in less developed regions; 
  • the interaction and collaboration of SMEs from less developed regions in interregional/multi-national value chains and with innovation actors form more developed regions.  

The focus is on technology transfer and highly specialised advisory support for the implementation of experiments and demonstration cases in companies. Participation of innovation actors is based on shared or complementary innovation priorities, as defined in their regional and/or national smart specialisation strategies. Projects shall show a balanced participation of regions with varying levels of development and innovation performance. 

I3 Instrument business investment cases start with a minimum TRL 6 and have the ambition to facilitate demonstration and to accelerate market uptake and commercialisation. The development of the business and investment cases is facilitated by the regional innovation ecosystems with companies in the lead. 


The estimated total available call budget for 2024 is EUR 36 million.

Info session

An information session on the calls targeted at eligible applicants was held online on 13 June 2024. 

Did you miss it? No problem - the recordings of the event are available HERE. The slides will shortly follow.