A structured dialogue with our partners
Smart specialization is the new strategic approach within the EU to develop the regions and it is a part of the EU 2020 strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. The idea is that all regions in Europe should specialize and build their regional innovation policies on the base of their successful clusters. This may sound straightforward but how do you go ahead in practice? The policy should be formulated in a dialogue with the stakeholders but that leads to the question who should you speak with and about what?
If we go to the first question the answer would be the successful companies. In Ostrobothnia the export industry have a specialization on energy, boat-building but also the fur producers have been successful in a global completion over a long period of time. The recipe for success has been listening to customers, networking with other companies but also that you have connected research and development to the production.
Following this we have, together with university partners, created a model where we ask the companies about their innovation partners. We ask whether they are located in the region, in Finland or outside Finland. Moreover are your most important partners within companies, higher education or within the public sector. What are you experiences and your expectations of your partners and which technologies do you view as important now and in the future?
We ask these questions to the triple-helix (companies, public sector and research institutions) partners that are stakeholders in the process. By putting a numerical value 1-10 on the partner experiences and expectations we are able to identify gaps that we that we strive to fit with an explanation in focus seminars.
We will then together in a dialogue also with other financers seek ways to invest our funds in measures aimed at bridging the largest gaps in the innovation structures.
Diagram of the discussion