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Lasers & Sources

Thierry Van der Pyl: EU recognizes the importance of photonics

Horizon 2020, to follow the EU Seventh Framework Programme, will focus on photonics as a key enabling technology.
16 May 2012, SPIE Newsroom. DOI: 10.1117/2.3201205.09

Horizon 2020, the EU's new Framework Programme for Research and Innovation for 2014 to 2020, has a particular emphasis on the role of photonics research and innovation, with photonics recognized as one of the European Union's six Key Enabling Technologies. But there are still many challenges in translating excellent research into innovation potential and economic growth and job creation.

Thierry Van der Pyl is currently the Director of the Directorate on Components and Systems in Directorate-General Information Society & Media, which includes responsibility for photonics in the European research Framework Programme.

He graduated from Ecole Normale Supérieure de Cachan and is docteur d'état in Informatics from University Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris VI. He was researcher at CNRS and joined the European Commission in 1984 where he held different management positions in the research programs on Information and Communication Technologies. He was chosen as the first head of the European Commission's Photonic Unit in 2007.