Urenio Watch Watch: Innovation Strategies

Innovating through EU Regional Policy

The purpose of this conference – the first of a series of conferences organized by DG REGIO on regions and economic change – was to give interested parties, particularly Structural Funds Managing Authorities, insight into successful strategies and practices for “improving knowledge and innovation for growth”, as recommended by the draft Community Strategic Guidelines for Cohesion Policy for 2007-2013.

The conference that took place on 12 – 13 June 2006 in Brussels focused on examining best practices as regards fostering knowledge transfer, innovation and clusters, with particular attention to those strategies and projects which have succeeded in less prosperous regions.

Three main themes have been addressed:

  • How to create the right environment for innovation
  • How to strengthen collaboration between public and private stakeholders
  • How to establish partnerships and synergies

The event was based around three sessions of workshops bringing together policy makers, expert advisers and practitioners. Topics for the workshops include the role of public authorities in managing innovation and nurturing clusters, the development of innovation infrastructure and support services, financial engineering, developing poles of excellence, commercializing research results, the role of networks in knowledge transfer, developing trans-regional projects, and experience of combining national and Community funding.