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Nano Regions Alliance: Facilitated Market Entrance of Nano-SME through a transnational linking of regional support schemes. the development of new. transnational support structures and the set-up of transnational competence pools (NANORA)
Start date: May 31, 2011, End date: Sep 29, 2015 PROJECT  FINISHED 

NANORA will foster cross-sector innovation by establishing and implementing a transnational support framework for nanotechnology.Unlike other disciplines. Nanotechnology is cross-sectoral by nature: Spanning various disciplines. nanotechnologies combine several research methods that aim to influence properties and structures at molecular level. This produces completely new functions that can be used and applied in a wide and diverse range of industries and fields. Developments in nanotechnology will shape our daily life in a multitude of applications: electronics. materials. energy efficiency. surface coating. medicine etc. Against this background. some regions in NWE have developed regional support and development schemes which aim at enhancing the know-how transfer in the field of nanotechnology. Regional approaches. if in place. usually orientated along the triple-helix model and try to involve all relevant stakeholders from research. economy and governance. It has turned out that traditional regional support schemes (e.g. cluster approaches) cannot unlock the full innovation potentials of nanotechnology. NANORA aims at a threefold solution to bridge this gap: - The disciplines from which the main players in the field of nanotechnology emerge are more intensely interweaved as in any other innovation area. This calls for support structures that comply with these new interdisciplinary value chains which will be provided by NANORA (aim 1) - The scales that need to be produced to serve a market can be so small that the cost-benefit-ratio of the production is not profitable in the traditional market access structures. They call for more extensive and more flexible market opportunities provided by NANORA (aim 2) - The percentage of work that a company dedicates to nanotechnology ranges from 100% to only a few percent. This calls for "competence-oriented" rather than "company-oriented" support schemes provided by NANORA (aim 3). Achievements: NANORA has successfully laid the foundation for implementing specific support packages tied for nanotechnology stakeholders in the Alliance area. The project has created TINCA, a unique nanotechnology-specific database containing around 600 nanotechnology SMEs and other stakeholders from 7 European regions for individually tailored matchmaking (see; elaborated an overview of existing funding and other support schemes available in the regions that are suitable for nanotechnology stakeholders; created a network of NANORA Access Points that process technology requests and offers from all of the Alliance area and liaise with the nanotechnology stakeholders in the regions (see; designed support packages containing a range of expert events, matchmaking mechanisms and market development activities. NANORA has also garnered the support of high-level expert groups in the European Commission as well as the cooperation of thematically related networks and initiatives. Furthermore, the project has collected valuable information on nanotechnology issues - particularly on nano safety - on its website NANORA will shortly move on to the phase of piloting their support measures to SMEs and other stakeholders.
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