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Light the Fuse...

Tuesday morning. Two double-espresso-activated. The plan is set for the day ahead. Then...

The call come into the teams. One of Europe's top hospitals wants to spin up a consortium of between seven and ten organisations from across the continent. Medical research institutions, expert SMEs and a couple of cutting-edge AI startups are needed to solve a particular set of challenges that the EU has set out in the funding call.

The Healthtech team spins into action. Experts one and all. Reaching out almost in real-time across their European networks via their personal connections, and leveraging previous successful partnerships. The EU has determined it is a RIA. That means Research and Innovation Action. Meaning it is lower down the Technology Readiness Level scale (TRL). These consortia builds are very different animals from their higher level TRL-cousins, such as those pushing commercialisation. They are known as Innovation Actions...or IAs.

By mid-afternoon the Healthtech team already has a pretty good idea of who they want for this three year project. It's covering AI and, well, AI moves pretty fast, so we need the best teams from across the continent.

But not just the best in terms of their technical capabilities. They also have to fit in and collaborate with a diverse set of organisations to meet the challenges set out. That takes skillsets. Research, hospitals, SMEs, startups, and corporates...they all run at different clock speeds, have complex overlapping demands and measurements. We need to get them humming together. That's where we come in.

Halfway through the morning another call comes in. This one's internal. The Electronics team has been noodling on an idea for an electronics-based consortia applied to key European supply chains. It's an IA...meaning it's closer to the commercialisation space.

Gears kick in. A team mobilises. Chip, robotics and compute skills come together. Some rapid ideation. The team knows the upcoming "funding instruments" and calls from the EU. The team is also infused with industrial expertise, tuned into the macro-economic challenges we face.

One of the team suggests a new angle. More noodling. Multiple Teams chats and meets overlap. This one's gonna need some serious horsepower. Early estimates are between thirty to fifty partners from across the continent. We're going to need top research institutions. We're going to need universities. We're going to need SMEs and startups. And we're going to need some big industrial corporate players.

It's 16:15 and the Electronics team is already getting positive feedback from it's partners in previous consortia. Many of them recommend additional capabilities out there. LiDAR, maybe generative design, drone swarming and other sensor specialists are added to the possibility space.

Tuesday's beginning to wind down, but the wheels are just starting to spin.

When you have EU-scale then complex partnerships can be simplified by constantly refining your processes and automating as much as possible. And when you have EU partners who have their own significant networks, then those possibility spaces for the project become even wider. The trick is to keep it focused, balanced and relevant. Tech innovation moves pretty fast. If you're setting out on a three year journey then you need a lot of foresight...and adaptability.

It's Wednesday morning. Parallel consortia in Healthtech and Electronics are already taking shape. Ideas through rapid partner interactions are spooling up into real possibility spaces.

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