The short story
The EPNOE was established in May 2005 as a “Network of Excellence (NoE)” with funding from the European Commission (EC) under the FP6-NMP program Grant Agreement ID: 500375. The NoE instrument was designed to reduce fragmentation and strengthen competitiveness by assembling a critical mass of resources and expertise centered on individual fields of science and technology (in our case, polysaccharides).
The ambition was for such networks to be “Durable Integration Structures with the momentum to survive and grow on a long-term basis.”
To fulfill that, the EPNOE was registered as a non-profit association in December 2007, and continued its activities after the end of EC funding in October 2009.
The initial focus of EPNOE was on promoting the use of polysaccharides as industry feedstock for the manufacturing of advanced, multifunctional materials. In March 2012, it received further funding from the EC for three years under the FP7-NMP program Grant Agreement ID: 290486 to expand activities towards health- and food-related materials and products and increase industrial participation and innovation.
The EPNOE has continued after the end of the second period of EC funding in February 2015 and now sustains its activities from membership fees. The network, which began with 16 academic and research institutions from 9 countries around Europe, has grown to include 42 academic, research and industry institutions from around the world.
Research and Industry events
Organization of networking events between research and industry for building project proposals
Acting as a source of expert technical knowledge for industry and civil society.
Organization of international conferences once a year, alternating between a full conference and one for junior scientists (PhD students and early postdocs)
Organization of student/researcher training through exchange programs (e.g. Erasmus), workshops and training courses