Activities

Enhance organisational capacity

Promote the RIS3

Evaluate the RIS3 implementation

R+D transfer workshops

Enhance organisational capacity

EmpInno enhances the organisational capacity of the project partners to work with the RIS3 approach. To accomplish this, each partner organisation installs one or more RIS3 specialists to intensify their knowledge about the regional and national smart specialisation strategy and act as a primary knowledge hub for RIS3-matters within the organisation and among local and regional stakeholder groups. The RIS3 specialists either have a comprehensive overview of the whole RIS3 or focus on a particular area of the smart specialisation strategy. The RIS3 specialists share the upgraded knowledge and learning from the RIS3 processes with the organisational members (e.g. via roundtable meetings or learning diaries) and document the relevant lessons learnt with distinct organisational coaching tools.

Output: 16 organisational coaching tools with assigned RIS3 specialists

Promote the RIS3

Smart specialisation strategies are communicated insufficiently in many regions and unknown to many innovation actors. For regional authorities as “RIS3 owners” to support innovation adequately, it is crucial that the implementation works properly and all relevant actors are aware of it. EmpInno thus mobilises end-users – such as universities, clusters, SMEs, and science parks – to capture opportunities to implement innovation projects. To do so, EmpInno helps to facilitate contacts among these relevant innovation actors and promotes instruments of the RIS3. For this purpose, the project partners organise events that are connected to attractive event formats (e.g. holding RIS3 information events combined with specific sectoral cluster events) in their regions or cities in order to promote instruments to realise innovation projects.

Output: 40 information events and mobilisation processes organised in the partner regions

Evaluate the RIS3 implementation

EmpInno evaluates and improves the implementation process of the RIS3 in each partner region. Project partners, who are “strategy implementers”, give feedback to their regional strategy owners and develop recommendations for the regional authorities. The recommendations will include how the transnationally exchanged good practices and experiences (e.g. how to monitor the RIS3 adequately) could be capitalised and translated into the smart specialisation process in their region. The project partners, who are regional authorities themselves, directly share the lessons learnt from the project with decision making bodies who accompany the management of RIS3 implementation. Feedback papers are developed as output of the activities to document the learning process in each partner region.

Output: 13 feedback papers to improve the implementation of the RIS3 in each partner region

R+D transfer workshops

EmpInno reduces innovation barriers, namely the lack of interaction between R+D actors and enterprises, and improves the often weak connection of these elements in regional innovation systems. R+D actors such as universities and research facilities will be better linked to regional SMEs, especially in the priorities which are chosen in the regional smart specialisation strategies. For this, the project partners organise and test novel formats of R+D transfer workshops that are based on shared state-of-the-art good practices from other project partners, which are then adapted to the local context. 

Output: Ca. 30 R+D transfer workshops carried out with approx. 360 participants

SME Empowerment tools

EmpInno tackles the two most common growth obstacles of SMEs in medium-sized cities and regions: the lack of capabilities to engage in internationalisation and digitalisation as well as the supply of skilled creative labour. Therefore, the project partners put into practice creative SME empowerment tools which are based on good experiences and instruments that are exchanged within the partnership. The project e.g. thus develops and applies tools to grow export turnover, to get the best out of the personnel or to find good ways through the digitalisation jungle for SMEs. The experiences and results feed into the synergy and empowerment concepts that are developed in six priorities/specialisations in which there is overlap among the participating partner regions. The SME Empowerment tools thus leverage the competitiveness of the SMEs and contribute to valorising each nucleus for innovation and growth.

Output: At least 9 SME empowerment tools developed and implemented in minimum 60 SMEs

Synergy potential and delegation trips

EmpInno creates opportunities for innovation actors to cooperate in the six overlapping priorities ICT, Health & Life Science & Biotech, Maritime Industries, Food, Energy and Materials. In many sectors of medium-sized cities and regions there is a lower critical mass and lower outward orientation in comparison to metropolises and “first cities”. Consequently, there is a threat of a negative cognitive and functional lock-in. In order to change the attitude of SMEs and networks, the actors are mobilised to connect to other actors in the Baltic Sea Region. For this purpose, the project partners carry out transnational delegation trips for companies and regional stakeholders (e.g. cluster managements, sectoral networks) from their partner regions, including match-making events, joint visits of tradeshows and round tables events.

Output: At least 12 transnational delegation trips carried out

Discuss RIS3 of partner regions

EmpInno combines the knowledge of actors with a similar role (innovation intermediaries and regional authorities in medium-sized cities and regions) in the RIS3 process and capitalises on their good practices but also discusses challenges that most of them face. The partners present and discuss the smart specialisation strategy of each partner region and exchange good practices of regional innovation policies. In addition, general topics related to the RIS3 processes are discussed (e.g. how to mobilise stakeholders, how to elaborate RIS3 monitoring systems) to overcome similar obstacles and to find good answers. This way, a transnational network of RIS3 specialists is developed that can mutually advance macro-regional solutions for local needs.

Output: one network of RIS3 specialists institutionalised.

Network and disseminate results

EmpInno changes the attitude of innovation actors beyond the partnership to better implement and improve the smart specialisation strategy during the entire life-time of their RIS3. For this purpose, the project partners attend RIS3-related conferences and events at local and transnational levels in order to promote project activities. Furthermore, networking and linking with similar initiatives and projects in and beyond the Baltic Sea Region helps the partnership to exchange and promote initiated processes. Documenting the acquired knowledge and lessons learnt will lead to producing and disseminating recommendations.

Output: Project results and processes disseminated at minimum 6 conferences

SME Empowerment tools

Synergy potential and delegation trips

Discuss RIS3 of partner regions

Network and disseminate results