A path towards strategic autonomy: The new Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda (SRIA) was handed over to the European Commission.
The new Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda (SRIA) for photonics was handed over by Lutz Aschke, President of Photonics21, to Thomas Skordas, Deputy Director-General in the DG CONNECT, at the Photonics Partnership Annual Meeting 2023 in Brussels. The SRIA represents a significant milestone for the photonics industry in Europe, outlining a clear vision and pathway forward for the European photonics community. With its renewed strategy, Photonics21 responds to and considers the European Union's need to re-establish economic competitiveness by way of strategic autonomy and resilient, strategic supply chains.
"The two overriding priorities of the European Union for economic competitiveness are to achieve strategic autonomy in key sectors of the European economy, to continue strengthening EU strategic supply chains and reduce trade dependencies. The Board of the Photonics Partnership and I, fully believe that the European photonics community has both the capacity and capability, along with the motivation, to contribute to these two interlinked challenges" says Lutz Aschke. "Photonics21's Executive Board and the Photonics21 secretariat have initiated a number of collaborations in strategic policy areas. These focus groups demonstrate the commitment of the Photonics Partnership to work collaboratively with industry, academia, and policymakers to drive innovation and progress in the photonics industry."
Photonics is an essential technology for strategic value chains and industries
The SRIA addresses the importance of advanced photonics technologies across several stra-tegic EU value chains and industrial ecosystems including high-performance computing and quantum computing, augmented and virtual reality for a European metaverse, digital infra-structure, industry 5.0 and manufacturing, automotive and mobility, space and defence, renewable energies, health, and agriculture and food. The SRIA is a first contribution to important future analysis, as the European Commission has yet to perform detailed dependency reviews of the Photonics sector.
Over the next five years, the Horizon Europe Photonics Partnership will work to realize the objectives outlined in the SRIA. These objectives are focused on advancing research in key areas such as health, communications, and manufacturing, as well as fostering collaboration between industry, academia, and policymakers. By doing so, the Partnership aims to provide the strong foundation necessary for the photonics industry to position itself for the future and contribute to Europe's economic growth.
Photonics has a privileged status within the EU as one of six key enabling technologies and as one of only 11 co-programmed partnerships formed by the new von der Leyen Commis-sion in 2021. With this status comes a new responsibility to work differently, to focus and develop the future disruptive photonics technologies that Europe needs to guarantee its strategic autonomy, and to contribute to strengthening EU strategic value chains. The Euro-pean Photonics community has fully assumed these challenges in this new SRIA roadmap.
"Photonics21 is excited to be at the forefront of this important initiative and looks forward to working with partners across Europe to achieve the objectives outlined in the SRIA. By working together, the photonics industry can make a meaningful contribution to Europe's economic competitiveness and help to build a more sustainable, prosperous future for all."