Baltic clusters set to expand
Clusters offer ideal opportunities for combining talent and resources when producing services and products. To improve how clusters operate in Denmark, Latvia and Sweden, the recently launched project ‘Baltic Sea Region - Capacity Building Programme’ (BSR-CBP) will design a common framework for cluster policies and transnational innovation programmes.
"As a self-made cluster facilitator, the three advanced courses in cluster facilitation in the BSR-CBP project covered the challenges I face in my daily work. Through the lectures and group discussions, I became much more aware of how to facilitate a cluster and gained knowledge of several practical tools which I can apply in my daily work."
Hans A Pedersen, Project Director, Danish Cooling Cluster
Public authorities in charge of innovation policy in the region have realised there is a need to increase the capacity of clusters to ensure their success. This includes designing training modules on how to better set up clusters and manage public cluster support programmes. These modules will then be used in pilot training sessions throughout the region, nationally and also abroad.
Filling the pool of resources
The project partners come from what is referred to as the Triangle Region, namely Denmark (founder of REG X, the Danish Cluster Academy), Sweden, through VINNOVA the Swedish governmental agency for innovation systems, and Latvia, via LIAA the Latvian Investment and Development Agency. Transfer of knowledge and experience in terms of managing clusters is a key feature of the project and will add to the pool of resources available in the region.
Training for growth
The partners have recognised the need to design and pilot training modules on cluster facilitation, support programmes, management, design and implementation. The target groups of the project are players in the public sphere such as managers from cluster organisations, business support organisations and civil servants at local, regional and national level. The project involves the design and piloting of two modules on basic training for use at regional or national level, three modules on advanced training for the transnational level and three modules on public cluster support programmes also for use at transnational level.
Ripple effects of capacity building
Once tested, the aim is for the training modules to subsequently be merged into the planned transnational cooperative strategic platform for the Baltic Sea Region. This platform will continue the Region’s InnoNet activities as from 2010. The aim of the platform is to help ensure that the project’s impact continues to be felt in the future, bringing benefits to a wide range of cluster actors.