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Enhancing the regional competences in strategic management of innovation policies (KNOW-HUB)
Start date: Dec 31, 2011, End date: Dec 30, 2014 PROJECT  FINISHED 

KNOW-HUB addresses a crucial problem of insufficient competence in European regions in strategic management of innovation policies, which negatively impacts the effectiveness of the Structural Funds operations. Even though there had been good strategies developed in Europe, few were fully, if at all, implemented. There are little instruments that effectively eliminate the stumbling blocks of knowledge based economy in Europe, such as little demand for innovation, poor social capital, red tape and institutional barriers, skills and competencies of human capital or poor connectivity between innovation actors. European regions lack experience in designing and implementation of these type of intervention at the same time complying with the EU state aid rules. Seldom analyses are made how the region can develop its unique competitive advantage in the view of global market trends or joining forces with other regions e.g. focusing on its unique specialisation.The objective of the project is to improve the regional innovation policies and help European regions to develop their competitive advantage. It will involve partners in mutual learning process to influence future policies and practices basing on the experiences and good practices already existing within the partnership. It focuses on two themes: smart specialisation strategies and policies as well as effective instruments of innovation policies. The partners will review the policies and practices of participating regions and identify good practices and problems. The conclusions of the peer reviews will be used in the joint learning process. The partners will involve key regional stakeholders to discuss the lessons learnt and prepare implementation plans tailored to specific needs of each region. The knowledge collected in the project will be disseminated in a smart way, with the use of modern knowledge management tools, as blog, wiki-type articles, videos and a training session.The partner regions differ in size, geographical origin and autonomy level and the track record of innovation policy. The partnership is composed by 12 partners representing 10 regions of 8 EU countries – these are regional governments or institutions directly involved in the shaping and implementing the innovation polices - and 1 European wide association. Namely: Adam Mickiewicz University Foundation, Poznan Science and Technology Park – Wielkopolska (PL), European Association of Development Agencies (BE), INNOVA Észak-Alföld Regional Development and Innovation Agency (HU), Basque Government (ES), North France Innovation Development (FR), Méditerranée Technologies (FR), Lower Austrian Government (AT), Association of Counties and Cities in the Weser-Ems(DE), Banská Bystrica Self-governing Region (SK), Castilla y León Regional Government – the Castilla y León Universities Foundation (ES), Applied Research and Communications Fund (BG) together with Municipality of Gabrovo (BG). Achievements: Know-Hub project activities in the first period were focused on developing the knowledge about regional innovation systems among Partnership with a focus on different ways regions develop their competitive advantage as well as on specific instruments they apply to implement their innovation policies. Using common methodology of peer review Partners looked into each others systems and started the mutual learning process which should be continued through further planned project activities (interregional workshops of mutual learning circles, elaboration of regional action plan and development of knowledge base). Actually the process of learning goes in both directions: interregional (among Know-Hub partners) and intraregional (a a result of involvement of regional stakeholders in the process) . The first phase of the project implementation highlighted the issues to cope with and confirmed that the strength of the consortium lies in its diversity which should enrich the process of mutual learning as well as make it useful for the other regions in Europe.

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