General Assembly Spring 2021 highlighted key progress achieved and marked new members joining

On 27 May, Bernd Schäfer, CEO of EIT RawMaterials, opened the General Assembly Spring 2021. Over the last 12 months, since Bernd Schäfer was appointed as the CEO, EIT RawMaterials Community has achieved a few important milestones and succeeded to reposition and orientate our consortium for tomorrow. The benefits of those efforts will return to our partners and will strengthen our leading position in the raw materials sector.

Developing raw materials into a major strength for Europe

Raw materials are the nucleus for strategic technologies and a transition towards a green and circular economy in the EU. EIT RawMaterials is developing raw materials into a major strength for Europe. We are connecting education with innovation and technology whilst contributing to entrepreneurship and competitiveness in the sector. We are proud to collaborate with our network of over 300 partners from universities, RTOs and industry across Europe, the backbone of our success!

Minerals, metals and advanced materials are key enablers to achieve the objectives of the European Green Deal. Today, only a fraction of the most relevant raw materials is produced in Europe. Together with our partners, EIT RawMaterials is perfectly placed to connect expertise and drive innovation to the benefit of society and Europe’s competitiveness in a responsible, collaborative, interdisciplinary and inclusive way.

Bernd Schäfer, CEO and Managing Director of EIT RawMaterials

Our resource structure has the power to provide breakthrough concepts for business, innovation, education and technology, attracting investments within the raw materials sector. However, all this is only feasible together with our partners and the engagement of a highly dedicated network of people, talents and teams, which together build the core of our competency and experience. This makes us unique!

EIT RawMaterials provides a collaborative environment for disruptive and breakthrough innovations by connecting business with academia, research, and investment. We also invest in the future generation of innovators for the raw materials sector through education initiatives ranging from wider society learning to lifelong learning and higher education programmes.

Bernd Schäfer, CEO and Managing Director of EIT RawMaterials

EIT RawMaterials Community boosts innovation and fosters the transition to a circular economy

We are excited to welcome new members to our Innovation Community. CRONIMET Holding GmbH brings expertise in the stainless and special metal segment, including business applications for the circular economy of stainless steel, specialty metals and battery materials. Tata Steel IJmuiden BV joins us as an industrial partner interested in process and technology developments that maximise sustainability and improve the circularity of the steelmaking industry. We are happy that our Innovation Community brings value and expert knowledge in the circular economy for the sector and are looking forward to our collaboration with the new members. 

Today, the General Assembly Spring 2021 showcased outstanding examples of our projects and the collaborative efforts that bring impact. Beate Brede, Fraunhofer IFAM, presented the LightRight 2.0 project and the Lightweighting Professional course, which is tailored to industry needs and offers a unique set of education programme for future professionals. Boris Lesjean, Veolia Germany, presented the U-START Open Innovation project run in partnership with EIT RawMaterials, scout talent and solve specific challenges for business cases.

Moreover, EIT RawMaterials is leading a newly launched HEI initiative to transform higher education institutions into engines of innovation. We tackle gender diversity in STEM education and scale up programmes by creating synergetic collaborations. By 2020, we have educated over 200 000 people! Together with our partners, our organisation has navigated through the intense year 2020 and the start of 2021, which was characterised by the COVID-19 crisis.

Raw Materials Alliance for resilient Europe

Securing raw materials supply and increasing self-sufficiency of metals and other raw materials within Europe have been of the highest priority to our agenda. Next to a view on green and sustainable mining, an efficient roadmap towards a circular economy, which includes recycling, residue processing, urban mining, dematerialisation, substitution, and product design, are imperative and indispensable. This awareness has resulted in a number of activities on an EU and Member State level. Those provide a huge opportunity to EIT RawMaterials and our partners. The European Commissions’ trust in EIT RawMaterials capability to manage and lead the European Raw Materials Alliance (ERMA) has been the latest prominent example.

Europe’s leading raw materials event

On 17 June, we will hold the RawMaterials Summit 2021, which will take place in a digital format. This will be an excellent opportunity to connect partners and relevant stakeholders from Europe and across the globe to discuss how raw materials innovation, education, and technology can enable the EU Green Deal. Also, we will showcase how ERMA can help to secure raw materials supply in Europe and how the transition to a circular economy can substantially help to develop thriving ecosystems and closing materials loops. Join us to become a part of the live discussions and share your view on the future of Europe!