EU-Funded EMPORIA4KT Project Trains Researchers on Mapping Routes to Impact for Early Stage Blue Economy Technologies

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Press release: 14 July 2021

The EMPORIA4KT Blue Economy Technology Transfer Programme is an EU-funded initiative that supports researchers to improve their innovation and technology transfer skills. Since the programme’s launch in February 2021, research teams from France, Ireland, Portugal, Spain and the UK have been developing the understanding and skills needed for the scientific community to map and encourage effective pathways to commercial use for early stage technologies (ESTs).

Funded by the EU Interreg Atlantic Area Programme, the teams have been developing their own ESTs under the guidance of two mentors with an academic and industrial background respectively. In the first phase of the programme, the goal was for the teams to understand potential avenues to market for their technologies through the creation of value maps and customer profiles.

As part of the training, researchers were tasked with developing collaborative, innovative approaches to identify four distinct potential applications for their assigned EST. The diverse technologies are all derived from marine research and applicable to the Blue Economy. They include novel off-shore renewable energy devices, sustainable materials for maritime infrastructure, applications of 3D virtual mapping, future systems modelling and applied proteomics.

Speaking about the training, programme leader Pierre Roudaut, (Technopole Quimper-Cornouaille), said,

“The teams and their mentors have made excellent progress with developing value propositions for their respective early stage technologies. This involves adapting and highlighting the main features of the technology and generating some quite interesting results regarding new ways in which they could be used. At the end of June, each team presented these results and chose the best of their respective four tentative applications for further development through market analyses with the goal of presenting their updated proposals in December."

As a collaborative programme, ongoing Covid-19 restrictions have presented a significant challenge. However, as Mr. Roudaut explained,

“Despite the challenges posed by Covid, on top of all the usual challenges researchers face, every team has so far met their objectives and this is very good to see. Some of our teams have been able to meet in person while others have collaborated online, but all have managed to collaborate and successfully produce good outputs. For us as organisers, this progress demonstrates that our methodology is truly effective.”

The next stage of the programme is for each of the nationally based teams, together with their scientific and industrial mentor, to complete the development of the route to market for their Blue Economy EST over the second half of 2021. Each team will present their final pitch at an event organised for their respective country. Teams with the best performance at each of the regional events will present their initiatives at the EMPORIA4KT final international public brokerage event in January 2022.

For more information about the training programme, please visit To learn more about the project participants and follow their progress, please follow us on Twitter @EMPORIA4KT.

Notes for the editor

The EMPORIA4KT project will run from 2019 – 2022 with an overall budget of approximately €2.2 million. EMPORIA4KT (EAPA_842/2018) is funded by the European Union’s Interreg Atlantic Area European Regional Development Fund.

EMPORIA4KT is coordinated by Universidade Nova de Lisboa – Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia (Nova School of Science and Technology). AquaTT is the project communication and dissemination partner. 

The views in this press release are the views of the author and do not reflect the views of the European Union.

Programme participant institutions:

  • Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT)
  • Bantry Marine Research Station Ltd / University College Dublin (BMRS / UCD)
  • Sligo Institute of Technology
  • National University of Ireland, Galway (NUIG)
  • Aberystwyth University
  • Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU)
  • University of Strathclyde
  • Ulster University
  • Université Bretagne Sud (UBS)
  • Laboratory of Biotechnology and Marine Chemistry, Université Bretagne Sud (LBCM)
  • Institut de Recherche Dupuy de Lôme (IRDL)
  • Station Biologique de Roscoff
  • Universidad de Cadiz (UCA)
  • Universidade da Coruña (UDC)
  • Universidad de La Laguna (ULL)
  • Universidad de Huelva
  • Universidade de Santiago de Compostela (ESTE – USC)
  • Universidade de Coimbra
  • Universidade do Porto
  • Universidade da Madeira
  • Universidade de Aveiro
  • The Centre for Marine Technology and Ocean Engineering (CENTEC)
  • Centro de Ciências do Mar e do Ambiente, Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa (MARE - Madeira)
  • Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia da Universidade Nova de Lisboa (NOVA)

For press queries, please contact Keegan Porter,