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Last update: May 2021

Menu Institutions

SPS - Saclay Plant Sciences


Saclay Plant Innovation


The Saclay Plant Innovation project (SPInn) is currently being funded through the SPS2020 call, launched in 2015 by the Saclay Plant Sciences Laboratory of Excellence (SPS LabEx) for the period 2016-2019. This project aims to create a local structure in order to support partnership for the whole SPS laboratories, and to promote, facilitate and develop collaborative projects between LabEx research teams and socio-economic partners (startups, microenterprises-SME, large companies, cooperatives, other laboratories, etc.). By increasing the connections between the academic and private sectors, SPInn aims at stimulating both research and innovation.

The SPInn project is coordinated by a team composed of several researchers / teachers-researchers:
- Emmanuelle Issakidis-Bourguet (IPS2, CNRS)
- Christian Meyer (IJPB, INRA)
- Loïc Rajjou (IJPB, AgroParisTech)
- Jean-Marc Seng (IPS2, Université Paris-Sud)

Moreover, in the last 15 months, Maxence Pfeiffer (Engineer specialized in biotechnologies, graduated from Agrocampus Ouest) has been working as business developer for innovation and partnership in the frame of the SPInn project.

Chloé Marchive, in charge of partnership project engineering (IPP) at the INRA Versailles-Grignon Center, supports SPInn's activities on a daily basis, in synergy and complementarity, for the development and stability of partnership within Paris-Saclay in the field of plant sciences.

The role of the SPInn team is to support SPS researchers in their innovation initiatives and to establish contacts with potential partners with a project engineering approach.

Its missions include:

  • detecting/evaluating the potential of research partnership between SPS labs and socio-economic actors;
  • conducting a market research for potential partners and identifying/precising the needs of socio-economic actors in terms of scientific collaboration in order to structure an adapted offer;
  • answering the questions of the research teams and orientating them towards the actor most likely to accompany them;
  • coordinating the SPS LabEx activities in the area of partnership and innovation in collaboration with existing institutional structures;
  • determining the type of sustainable structure most suitable for SPInn and contributing to its implementation.

In one year, the SPInn team has established a relationship of trust with the fifty research teams and platform managers of the SPS LabEx and has had the opportunity to interact with many socio-economic players: the competitiveness clusters Vitagora, Végépolys, Medicen, Cosmetic Valley, Céréales Vallée and IAR; the 3BCAR and Plant2Pro Carnot Institutes; the "Société d'Accélération du Transfert de Technologie" Paris-Saclay (SATT). It regularly exchanges with the technology transfer offices of the different institutions of the LabEx. For example, Maxence has been involved in two working groups led by INRA: one of the working groups of the "Partnership, Transfer and Innovation” service (Direction du partenariat et du transfert pour l'innovation, DPTI) and the working group of the innovation domain "Characterization of plants, selection and products” (Caractérisation des plantes, sélection et produits).

Through its prospecting process, the SPInn team had the opportunity to exchange with over 80 potential partners, 20 of which visited the LabEx facilities and laboratories. This survey was particularly based on three events which Maxence participated in or helped to organize in 2017: a meeting with companies in the sector of plants secondary metabolites in May, the Carnot Meetings (RDV Carnot) in October and the Saclay Plant' Innov' event in November (organized by the SPS LabEx). It is also worth noting that 2 startups have settled in INRA facilities close to SPS labs at the instigation of SPInn in 2017.

The SPInn project is part of an approach combining open-innovation and entrepreneurship. In this perspective, it is in contact with the Paris-Saclay entrepreneurial ecosystem through meetings with investment funds, incubators and start-up studios. In addition, SPInn had the opportunity to welcome students from the MBA Entrepreneurship HEC during a lab2biz tour and to discuss with them about the entrepreneurial opportunities offered by the technologies developed within the SPS LabEx.

Do not hesitate to contact the SPInn team in your steps towards innovation and partnership!

Contact :

SPInn team