EULAC-RIS: EU-Latin America cooperation on regional innovation systems
Sustainable economic growth is increasingly related to the capacity of regional economies to change and innovate. Europe needs to be more inventive, to react more quickly to changing market conditions and to consumer preferences and to become a more innovation-friendly society and economy. The promotion of innovation in the wider sense (R&D and innovation; entrepreneurship; ICT take-up; and, human capital development) has therefore been a central feature in EU regional policy which will be strengthened as we look forward to the programmes for 2014-2020. It is widely recognised that the many key drivers of research and innovation are most effectively addressed at the regional level.
An important pillar of an innovation policy in EU was the establishment (and regular update) of regional innovation strategies (RIS), co-funded by DG REGIO, reflecting the strengths and potential of the key actors in the region, with the aim of offering regional stakeholders a common platform to promote, design, implement, manage and evaluate the region's innovation policy.
Based on this experience, DG REGIO has supported since 2011 several projects in Latin America (Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Peru) to exchange experiences between Latin American and European regional authorities and specialized agencies in policy setting, implementation and management with respect to clusters and SME innovation inducing policies.