Photo credit: Vincent Gerbet


France is mobilising half a billion euros in its massive national investment plan “France 2030”, to fund and accelerate the use of scientific and technological research results in the field of innovation. The national plan is built around 3 key areas: the greener reindustrialization of France, healthcare and artificial intelligence, with a view to creating new markets and, in particular, the ambition of creating 100 unicorns and 500 DeepTech start-ups a year by 2030.

Part of this budget has been allocated to the programme called “University Innovation Clusters” (UIC or PUIs in French) which mission is to strengthen the link between academic research and the socio-economic world, looking for solutions to the challenges of our time. The PUIs recognize the vital role of local support and draw on all existing local initiatives, skills, tools and players to reinforce the links between them. The Minister for Higher Education and Research and the Minister for Industry plan to create around twenty-five University Innovation Clusters (PUI). A PUI brings together academic communities as well as local and socio-economic partners at a local and regional level.

University Innovation Cluster SEVille (PUI SEVille)

As a result of a call for proposals launched in 2023 by the government operators, the French National Research Agency (ANR) and Bpifrance (bank for businesses), six projects were selected, of which the SEVille PUI. The SEVille project is led by 7 founding members: Paris-Est University Community (ComUE), Université Gustave Eiffel, Université Paris-Est Créteil (UPEC), École des Ponts ParisTech, École nationale vétérinaire d’Alfort (EnvA), CNRS and SATT Erganeo (technology transfer company).

PUI SEVille was officially launched on 7th March 2024 at Université Gustave Eiffel, on the Marne-la-Vallée campus. The event brought together around a hundred participants from academic circles at Paris-Est establishments, as well as representatives from the French government, local authorities and socio-economic partners.

PUI SEVille addresses innovation through the intersecting perspectives of the scientific themes of Health, Environment, and City. Its objectives are to :

  • Increase the flow of innovation projects originating from research laboratories in the region, while improving the conversion rate of these projects into innovation, notably through the creation of DeepTech start-ups.
  • Enhance the efficiency of support for innovation, in terms of collaborative research, technology transfer and entrepreneurship, on the Paris-Est site.

The PUI will enable its members to jointly develop a common strategy and pool their resources and the platforms for experimentation such as Sense City (Equipment of Excellence /EquipEx), Build’In (experimental digital construction research facility), the structural testing platform (checking safety and serviceability of bridges, large civil engineering and building structures), Cleanrooms (production of micro-elements 10 to 100 times smaller than the diameter of a human hair), etc.

The SEVille project also plans to link with other initiatives in the region supported by the France 2030 programme, such as the Sci-ty pre-maturation/maturation programme led by Université Gustave Eiffel.

To know more about Université Gustave Eiffel transformative projects please visit the website


Author: Marie-Françoise Sherratt-Roux, Université Gustave Eiffel