The conference aims to facilitate the exchange of good practices for pursuing the implementation of the Lisbon strategy at regional level through cohesion instruments. In particular, the event will showcase examples of good practice and governance in European regional policy in the fields of technological innovation, market development for new products and services and the improvement of quality of life of the citizens.
In nine workshops, experts will debate on strategies, experiences and projects around three themes:
• small and medium-sized enterprises, transfer of technology and governance;
• innovative technologies, products and markets for sustainable growth;
• improved regions and cities for businesses and citizens.
On the 8 March, Mrs Danuta Hübner, European Commissioner for Regional Policy, will launch the "Regional Innovation Awards" which aim at seeking best European practice in regional development.
Through an "exchange and networking forum" the event will offer a learning and networking opportunity for authorities managing the Structural Funds, implementing bodies such as regional development agencies, and business organisations. The 'forum' will be organised in cooperation with the French region of Provence-Alpes-Côtes d'Azur and with the support of the Committee of the Regions.
The Committee of the Regions will also present the "Lisbon Monitoring Platform", a network of more than 60 regional and local authorities which monitors in detail the progress of the implementation of the Lisbon Strategy and its governance process. It will showcase good practices and challenges for the local and the regional level in different policy areas.
A provisional programme of the conference can found here, the final programme will be published in February 2007.
More than 500 participants from regions all over Europe are expected to discuss how European regional policy and its instruments contribute to competitive regions and cities through innovation and exchange of best practice. The event will address representatives of
• national, regional and local administrations;
• Structural Funds managing authorities and implementing bodies;
• businesses organisations, banks and SMEs;
• networks and associations;
• universities, research and consultancy organisations;
• regional media;
• EU institutions
Interpretation will be provided from and into English, French, German, Polish, Spanish and Italian for the main conference room and English, French and German for workshops in other rooms.