On Wednesday 28 of March 2018, CERTH, as partner of the European Initiative “ClusterFY” organized in collaboration with counterparts from Sweden, the Netherlands and Lithuania the interregional workshop «Innovation and cluster policy development: Exchange of knowledge between Greece, Sweden, The Netherlands and Lithuania». The workshop that took place at CERTH’s premises, was very successful, attracting high interest of over 25 stakeholders representing more than 15 organization from the quadruple helix -Q4 of the region: Clusters facilitators and SMEs members, innovation and development agencies and consultants, researchers and academics, business associations and regional authorities, exchange their knowledge and experiences on innovation and clusters related practices and policies development in the involved regions.
Invited key speakers were acknowledged for their vast experience in clusterization processes. Mr Luc Hulsman, Senior strategist EU programming, The Northern Netherlands Provinces alliance, presented the “Open Innovation call”. Mrs Rima Dijkstra, “ClusterFY” project coordinator, Agency for Science, Innovation and Technology MITA, analyzed the case of the “Innovation Express”, a transregional joint call for proposals (among Sweden, Denmark, Lithuania, Germany, Norway, Catalonia) implemented within the framework of the Baltic Sea Region Stars programme. Two more Lithuanian success stories were shared: LITEK Cluster and Santara Valley demonstrating at the same time how KETs uptake can accelerate clusters and their members SMEs entrance into international Innovative Value Chains. Mrs Karin Skalman Iftac CEO (Hexatronic group), former Innovation agency VINNOVA Programme director, EU Baltic Sea macro-regional strategy priority area coordinator, presented the VINNVAXT programme & iHubs Sweden, the national innovation platform that stands for smart specialisation and the development of industry through innovation. Mr Albert Haan Senior strategist EU collaboration, The Northern Netherlands Provinces alliance, shared the Dutch experience of over-nurtured cluster management entities and emphasized on the balance ERDF clusters’ policy mix should keep, between direct services to members and capacity building for cluster managers/facilitators. Mr Ioannis Fallas, cluster Manager, shared his experience from the formation and operation of the CluBE Cluster of Bioenenergy & Environment that is active in the Greek region of Western Macedonia.
The inspiring presentations and speeches triggered a vivid round table discussion on the role of business networks and clusters in the regional development and the opportunities to enhance them through ERDF funding. The different approaches of the smart specialization strategies development and the focus and type of measures and actions that could serve them were on the spotlight as well. Opportunities and threats were revealed and insights were shared concerning also how the “ClusterFY” project could assist the region of central Macedonia to improve innovation and cluster policy with the aim of regional growth
For more information please visit: https://www.interregeurope.eu/clusterfy