Top-down approach to initiate and enhance SMEs participation in European Research in Economic, political, social sciences and humanities and to support their strategic decision making (GA No ETI-CT-2005-023315)

Logo of the project "PLATON"

Funding Source

European Commission – DG Research and Development


FP6 – Research and innovation in the specific programme for research, technological development and demonstration "Structuring the European Research Area"


October 2005 – December 2007 (27 months)

Total budget

565.434 €


Q-PLAN role

Project Coordinator



PLATON was an innovative ETI project, which aimed to initiate and enhance the participation of innovative SMEs and mainly of motivated SME Groupings in future (FP7) and actual (FP6) European research activities in the areas of economic, political, social sciences and humanities (CITIZENS priority).

To achieve its aim the project demonstrated to SMEs / SME Groupings from the EU-27 the importance and benefits that such research results have in their competitiveness, innovation performance and long-term viability. The project implemented innovative actions such as:

  • Advanced Tutorials,
  • ‘Strategic Guidance’ services,
  • Audits,
  • Research Action Plans,
  • Networking with EU-15 research leaders and EC services.

The project also focused on creating awareness and enhancing the participation of SMEs / SME Grouping to FP6/FP7 research projects. Project activities focused particularly on assisting SMEs/SME Groupings to (a) take advantage of research results in the targeted areas and (b) play an active role in relevant research activities, so as to respond better and proactively to their changing environment.

Overall, 21 events were implemented, while more than 200 SMEs and SME Groupings were directly benefit (in depth guidance) from the project activities. To maximise its impact the project was supported by a web-portal including a user-oriented database to facilitate, networking and providing valuable info. PLATON tasks were fulfilled by a multidisciplinary consortium consisted of 6 European partners from respective European countries.

Q-PLAN responsibilities

  • Project Management / Coordination
  • Analysis of FP research projects and input for the Good Practices in FP projects.
  • Processing and preparation of information material, presentations and training material for the info-days and tutorials.
  • Web-portal, partner search tools and a Database with more collaboration profiles of European SMEs and SME Groupings.
  • Design of questionnaires and the rest of documentation for research audits, analysis and methodology for the action plans, action plans and roadmap elaboration
  • Participation in the elaboration and monitoring of the research action plans.
  • Elaboration of Strategic Guidance Reports to SMEs and SMEs Groupings (e.g. SME Associations, etc)
  • Information and training to more than 200 SMEs and SME Groupings