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RBI moves to the EU Priority List

Dec 23rd 2014

The RBI capital structural project Open Scientific Infrastructural Platforms for Innovative Applications in the Economy and Society (O-ZIP) was officially included in the Operational Programme of the European Commission 'Competitiveness and Cohesion' for the financial period of 2014 to 2020. O-ZIP is worth 55 million euros and aims to strengthen the most competitive parts of the RBI in order to enhance the RBI cooperation with entrepreneurs and industry.

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In the next ten years this generous funding of the European Union, will enable the RBI reconstruction and upgrading of the entire infrastructure, from laboratory equipment to human resources.

The principle that lies behind O-ZIP is boosting those parts of ‘Ruđer’ which are the best in Croatia and at the same have a great opportunity to cooperate with the economy, as well as those parts that have proven excellence in providing European and applied projects.

The focus of the project will be in synergy with the strategy of 'smart specialization', i.e. the so-called 'Key Enabling Technolgies' (KET) in which the RBI is either the best or among the very few best in Croatia and in the region, namely: biotechnology (pharmaceutical and food industry), advanced materials and manufacturing technologies (detectors and sensors, smart materials, radiation technologies), ICT: eScience, photonics (optoelectronics), health (diagnostic and therapeutic methods). This also means the purchase of the high-tech equipment that will be used for the development of research and knowledge transfer to local and foreign industry.

"Such sophisticated equipment will enable us testing and developing of all kinds of new technologies such as new types of sensors and detectors. For example, diamond detectors that were recently developed by the RBI scientists could be upgraded for their possible use at CERN." - said the RBI Director General Tome Antičić.

A key component of O-ZIP will be stronger interaction with the Croatian and European economies. O-ZIP will accomplish these goals by careful and systematic investments in the entire RBI infrastructure and capital equipment, in line with the numerous changes in the RBI business processes which will be enabled by a new constitution and new policies that shall put emphasis on: excellence, maximum openness of the existing equipment in the future, the importance of commercialization, and the flexibility and mobility of scientists. Also, great attention will be paid to the mobility of researchers, commercialization of knowledge and special research relevant for the Croatian economy.

RBI still needs to undertake numerous activities and systematic changes in order for the EC to provide the final approval of the full feasibility study.

There`s still a lot of work to be done, but one thing is certain- after such good news the European future and sustainability of the RBI is unquestionable and it looks very bright.

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