NEC orchestrating a brighter world
NEC Laboratories Europe

Open Innovation

European and National Projects

NEC Laboratories Europe is a long-term active player in EU-funded projects. Starting from the FP4-ACTS IthACI project in 1998, we have participated in nearly 120 European projects. Through European projects, we get in touch with the top universities in Europe as well as companies, government agencies and authorities that help us understand the challenges they faces. Together we develop solutions to societal problems and try them out to generate real impact.  

We have built a strong reputation as a competent and reliable partner and have also established efficient processes ranging from quick internal proposal assessment to effective administrative procedures during both the proposal and execution phases.

We are constantly looking for partners to build strong consortia addressing the upcoming calls for projects, including both mid-sized research projects and larger, innovation-oriented projects. Our focus areas for the next EU calls entirely reflects our research areas.

Please check out some of our current projects under each respective research area section.

Please contact us at if you are looking for a strong partner for your consortium.

University Cooperation

NEC Laboratories Europe works together with the best universities in Europe (and beyond) with various forms of cooperation, including participation in publicly funded projects, sponsored research activities such as PhD projects or focused research contracts, focused cooperation projects for joint scientific publications and student thesis or internship projects.

Throughout our history, we have had more than 40 of bi-lateral cooperation projects with universities located in 16 different countries.

In-house Idea Exchange

NEC Laboratories Europe regularly organizes invited talks with expert speakers. We look for researchers presenting their recent scientific publications relevant to our research areas, as well as practitioners showing us their successful innovation projects.

On average we have one invited speaker every working month and half of them are university professors.

This increases our researchers’ exposure to the latest trends in research in addition to the external conferences they already attend.

Visiting Researchers

NEC Laboratories Europe is open to various forms of cooperation with individual researchers and academics. On a case-by-case basis, we have the possibility to host PhD students, post-docs and professors. PhD students positions are typically advertised through our internship job sections. Post-docs and sabbatical/visiting researchers’ cooperation projects are created ad-hoc based on common research interests and publication track records.

If you are an expert academic in our research areas with demonstrated top-tier conference publications and are interested in cooperating with us, please contact

Innovation and Accelerator Networks

In addition to being open to new challenges and to co-developing technology, we have an open approach towards new ways of exploiting the research results. We not only transfer our technology to NEC’s Business Units for commercialization, but also nurture entrepreneurial skills to enable the spinning-off of selected business ideas. To do this, we rely on NEC’s internal acceleration program NEC-X and we cooperate with the local accelerator network Heidelberg Startup Partners. We periodically select projects that will undergo business validation sprints and product boosting phases which might lead to the creation of a start-up.

Partnership & Associations

NEC Laboratories Europe is a partner of several industry and scientific associations, in which, together with our partners, we define common objectives to pursue, research agenda items to propose, define standards, raise awareness for specific topics or simply establish cross-organizational networks to match interests and capabilities to better address new innovation opportunities. These collaboration venues further increase the openness of our laboratories towards new challenges and solutions that can be jointly developed.

For example, we are currently members of Big Data Value Association (BDVA) and Trust DigitalLife (TDL).

Please contact us at if you are looking for a strong partner for your partnership or association.

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