Side events

OPEN DAYS 2015 > Programme > Side events

Side events


In parallel to the OPEN DAYS official programme, a number of related events are taking place in Brussels throughout the week. These are referred to as OPEN DAYS side events. Their content, registration process and location are the responsibility of the respective event organiser.

The side events are listed in chronological order. Please click on the title for the extended information.

Sustained and sustainable economic growth

13 October 2016, 09:00-13:30
Bucharest-Ilfov Regional Development Agency
Venue: Permanent Representation of Romania to the EU, rue Montoyer 12, B-1000 Brussels

Bucharest-Ilfov Regional Development Agency (ADRBI), with the support of the Permanent Representation of Romania to the EU  organises  a seminar on promoting the concept of sustainable economic growth, in the context of regional policy and investments financed through REGIO- Regional Operational Programme.

The purpose of the event is to present the results of implementing REGIO 2007-2013 in Bucharest-Ilfov region and promote them at European level. It also aims at promoting at European level new funding opportunities of REGIO 2014-2020 to ensure transparency of funds used for the Bucuresti-Ilfov development region through REGIO.






Provinces reinforcing economic development in rural areas

12 October 2015, 10:30 – 13:00
European Confederation of Local Intermediate Authorities (CEPLI)
Venue: 24, Montoyer Street, 1000-Brussels

The rural and urban development of our territories is a priority of the European Union Cohesion Policy.

The provinces are contributing to it as they provide the link between rural and urban areas.

We will highlight some examples by which provinces support and strengthen the economic activities in rural areas, such as tourism development, preservation and enhancement of local heritage or accompanying rural development initiatives.

By their action, they also fight against territorial and social division by ensuring access to common services and facilities for all.

Contact: Liliana Mangeac UNCJR Brussels Office




European Launch of the Scottish EU Funding Portal

12 October from 17:30
Scotland Europa in partnership with The Scottish Government; East of Scotland European Consortium and the West of Scotland European Forum
Venue: Scotland House Conference Centre | Rond-Point Schuman 6 | B-1040 Brussels | Belgium

This event will mark the European launch of the Scottish EU Funding Portal, a free online resource for organisations interested in EU funding and collaboration, providing a single source of information on EU programmes and projects involving Scottish partners. We will showcase the portal and share Scotland’s experience with European partners interested in creating a similar resource.

The event will also highlight Scotland’s Year of Food and Drink, and some of the EU projects used to support the food and drink sector.

Stakeholders should attend if they are interested in learning more about the funding portal and its future development.

Contact: Lynne Ross - Ingrid Green 


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Promoting local development through smart subsidies’ solutions addressing poverty and strengthening social inclusion – Policies & Practices special event

12 October from 17:30 - 19:00
Edenred and in the frame of the “Policies & Practices” debate cycle, with the participation of the European Commission, municipalities, regions and NGOs from Czech Republic, Romania, Greece and Italy
Venue: THON EU HOTEL, Brussels

Tailored to the needs of public authorities, smart subsidies represent solutions to implement and manage public funds efficiently and in complete transparency. The conference will explore how to design such solutions which can also ease the implementation of programmes benefiting from EU Funds, through presentations of existing practices to fight poverty and ease inclusion of frailed populations.

The session intends, with the support of testimonies from local authorities and lively exchanges, to highlight the efficiency of different solutions with characteristics fitting in the EU expectations and objectives: an effective and clear management while promoting social innovation.

Contact: Delphine Chilese-Lemarinier

Registration: Registration on - Or by email to


Smart Cities Information System Project Coordinators Meeting

13 October 2015,  09:00 - 16:30
Eric Lecomte, DG Energy
Venue: Borschette building, room CCAB3D

The Smart Cities Information System is financed by the European Commission’s DG Energy in order to support the replication of smart cities innovation and technologies across Europe.

It collects data from EU-funded smart cities demonstration projects, analyses results, shares best practices, and generates policy recommendations.

This event brings together coordinators of those demonstration projects to establish discuss ongoing progress, share ideas, and establish common goals and objectives in the field of European smart cities development.

Contact: Stuart Alford



Green Infrastructure for and with citizens: How can local governments make it happen?

13 October 2015,  09:00 - 17:00
ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability on behalf of the GREEN SURGE Project
Mundo-b Rue d'Edimbourg 26, 1050 Bruxelles (

The EU-funded project GREEN SURGE will hold a free Stakeholder Dialogue Forum with city planners and policy makers, scientists and DG Research representatives to discuss the manifold options for local governments to plan, govern and maintain green infrastructure in their cities and realise their multiple social and environmental functions and benefits.

City planners and policy makers from Utrecht (Netherlands), Edinburgh (United Kingdom), Milan (Italy) and Berlin (Germany) (TBC) will share their experiences with involving citizens in green infrastructure planning and management and making green spaces available and accessible for all groups of society. The open, interactive format will make the most of the diversity of experts to stimulate discussion and to relate research to practical implementation.

The event is free of charge to all participants. Refreshments and lunch will be provided and the event will be followed by a GREEN SURGE Social with drinks and finger food.

Contact: Clara Grimes

Registration: Online registration form or via email to

Download the agenda here.


Regional/Local Energy Agencies & Energy Departments of Regional Authorities: their role in supporting Covenant of Mayors municipalities

13 October 2015, 09:00 - 17:30
FEDARENE (a ManagEnergy event)
Venue: Palais des Académies - rue Ducale 1, 1000 Brussels (Trône metro station)

Designed in a fully interactive way, the 4th edition of this ManagEnergy networking event for energy agency directors will focus on all aspects that could help an energy agency become the one-stop-shop not only for technical projects but also for investment plans in energy efficiency and renewables. Energy agencies will use some of the most successful examples across Europe as a basis for the interactive discussions.

As last year, a small signing ceremony is foreseen for those energy agencies that are willing to join the Covenant of Mayors Initiative or for those who joined after June 2014. Visit the Local and Regional Agencies Corner on the Covenant of Mayors website.

Contact: Dominique BOURGES

Registration: Register on


Approaching AAA rating in youth employment

13 October 2015,  11:00 - 14:00
Organiser: EU-Representation Office of Carinthia
Espace Monte Paschi, Avenue d'Auderghem 22-28, 1040 Brussels

The workshop should take place in the form of a political debate/discussion. The aim is on the one hand to identify the reasons for the high youth unemployment rate and subsequently juxtapose regions from both ends of the spectrum in order to exchange ideas and best practices in the attempt to tackle youth unemployment successfully and mutually compare implemented measures and procedures on the regional level. Thereby regions with a relatively low youth unemployment rate should demonstrate and share their measures taken and why they function so efficiently.

On the other hand existing measures on EU-level such as the youth guarantee should be presented and discussed.

The debate will be led by a moderator and a key note speech by a representative from the EU-institutions will be given. Ulrike Storost from DG Employment will be the key note speaker and Claire Dhéret (European Policy Center) will moderate the side event.

Contact: Martina Rattinger


Ale municipality - Easy to live for all

13 October 2015,  14:00 - 17:00
Ale Municipality, Sweden
Venue: Microsoft Executive Briefing Center Brussels - Rue Montoyer 51, 1000 Brussels

Ale municipality is going through a strong development stage where a number of smaller communities dominated by industrial production and agriculture are transformed into attractive living- and work alternatives to the second largest city of Sweden. This demands a long term focus on strategic goals, sustainable development and growth. One of the main challenges for an attractive municipality where it is easy to live is to increase the wish to learn amongst our children and young people, i.e. attractive schools. ICT is one of the tools in our toolkit to improve Ale municipality.

Contact: Jerry Brattåsen

Registration: via email to


Active and Healthy Ageing in Knowledge and Innovation Communities: widespread innovation in good practices

13 October 2015, 14:30 – 17:00
Comissão de Coordenação e Desenvolvimento Regional do Centro
Venue: Portuguese Permanent Representation to the EU - Av. de Cortenbergh, 12, 1040 Bruxelles

The proposed workshop will foster discussion and twinning partnership, between European Regions, to tackle the societal challenge of population ageing targeting knowledge and innovation-based good practices.

The rational of the proposed approach aims at contributing to improve health and social care in the elderly European populations, creating new opportunities for innovation and business creation as key drivers of the silver economy. The main goals of the project are aligned with key objectives of the European Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing (EIP-AHA) and the knowledge and innovation communities (KIC) EIT-Health.

The workshop will engage, in communications, 4 main active partners, 2 from less developed regions and 2 from more developed regions.

Partners will present (20 min presentations, each) their regional ecosystem, focusing on topics pertinent for innovation and ageing.

EIP-AHA references sites and key regions involved in EIT-Health KIC will be invited to attend the workshop and to play an active role in a 30 min discussion, seeking the involvement of regions in themeeting recommendations.

Contact: Lidia Martins

Registration: via emailto Lidia Martins

Smart specialisation into action with the Päijät-Häme Region (FI): Environment, design and wellbeing

13 October 2015,  15:30 - 18:00
Päijät-Häme Region (FI)
Helsinki EU Office, Rue Belliard 15-17, Brussels

We are honoured to invite you to the networking seminar organised by the Regional Council of Päijät-Häme. In the networking seminar the stakeholders of the Päijät-Häme region will share with you several project ideas and initiatives which are based on the areas of expertise of our region. We are looking forward to expand our transnational collaboration and create co-operation linkages with you in these key areas of smart specialisation.

Päijät-Häme has a long tradition of specialization based regional innovation strategy. The priority areas of Päijät-Häme’s regional expertise are environment technologies, design and health and wellbeing.

Contact: Heli Halla-aho

Registration: Kindly confirm your attendance by 30th September 2015 by email to


European Forum of PV Clusters/ The Future of Photovoltaics - how can European Regions Participate in the Growing Market for Solar Energy?

14 October 2015, 09:30 - 16:45
SOLARROK Consortium, the coordinator: Dr. Peter Frey, Solar Valley GmbH
Venue: SQUARE BRUSSEL SA MEETING CENTRE, Rue Mont des Arts, Glass Entrance

The EU has to put a huge joint effort into securing the power necessary to run our private, industrial and public lives while maintaining grid stability. Within a European energy cooperation, how can European regions support innovative solar concepts through a joint approach and boost collaboration with neighbouring energy clusters (MENA)? These questions are discussed in the SOLARROK – European Forum of PV Clusters, organised by the SOLARROK consortium (Photovoltaic clusters from Navarra, Rhône-Alps, Central Germany, Slovenia, Austria, Lithuania, ELAt region, Norway) and addressing a broad audience interested in renewable energy concepts, smart urban environments, and models for cross-regional R&D collaboration.

Contact: Marie-Charlotte Hoffmann



Urban-rural integration: How to implement the rights of the child at local level?

14 October 2015, 14:00 - 15:30
Skåne Association of Local Authorities
Venue: The Nordic House, Rue de Luxembourg 3, B-1000 Brussels

Addressing the theme of urban and rural development, urban-rural integration leads to the question: How about the children? How do we secure that the rights of the child are safeguarded?

Skåne, Sweden are first out educating 150 child rights specialists in our 33 municipalities. Wishing to share this experience with other European regions and municipalities we are organizing a Side Event as part of the Open Days 2015 agenda focusing on implementation of the rights of the child at local level seen from Swedish and European perspectives. Panel from Skåne Association of Local Authorities, EP, Commission, UNICEF and ChildFund Europe.

Contact: Johanna Haward

Registration : Register on 10th October 2015 at the latest:


Growth of SMEs: a case study from Innovabone - an EU funded project on regenerative medicine

14 October 2015, 14:30 - 17:00
Innovabone project
Venue: University Foundation - Egmontstraat 11 rue d’Egmont, 1000 Brussels

EU funded project Innovabone proposes high level solution for a difficult scientific problem: repairing non-union bone lesions. Innovative SMEs partners in this project will present their experience and show how efforts of research projects together with regional support and a constructive national cluster strategy will create a better environment in EU for SME. Nanotechnology has the ability to become the most promising technology advance for this century and Innovabone that implies the use of nanotechnology for medical purposes will highligh its achievements and the mutual learning experience and best practices of its SMEs: Tetra (DE), Promoscience (IT), Qserve (NL), Moverim (BE).

Contact: Laura Vivani



The role of regional and local authorities in the EU Council decision-making process

14 October 2015, 15:00 - 18:00
House of the Dutch Provinces in Brussels
Venue: Solvay library, Parc Léopold, Rue Belliard 137, 1040 Brussels

15h30 – 16h30 Panel discussion with representatives of: Vlaanderen, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Oberösterreich and the European Committee of the Regions.

  • Sharing experiences: input in the EU council decision-making process, elaborated with recent examples

    Luc van de Brande – chair of VLEVA and CoR member (CIVEX)

    Stefan Engstfeld – member of parliament Nordrhein-Westfalen and CoR member (REGLEG/CALRE)

    Viktor Sigl – president of Oberösterreich parliament and CoR member (REGLEG/CALRE)
  • The connecting role of the European Committee of the Regions

    Karl-Heinz Lambertz; first vice president CoR

16h30 – 16h45 “Double-Dutch example” by Wim van de Donk, president of the House of the Dutch Provinces

16h45 – 17h00 Closing remarks and follow-up

Contact: Rob van Eijkeren

Registration: People can register by sending an e-mail to Ilse Buijs;


Bucharest-Ilfov Region – urban-rural integration

14 October 2015, 16:00 - 19:30
Bucharest-Ilfov Regional Development Agency
Venue: 60Wiertz Street, European Parliament, Altiero Spinelli building, room A3G2, Brussels

The Bucharest-Ilfov Regional Development Agency (ADRBI) with the support of member of European Parliament Ana-Claudia Tapardelhas the pleasure to organize this event to promote at international and European level the results achieved so far in implementing regional development REGIO projects in Bucharest-Ilfov region, as success stories.

This event is also an opportunity for you to discover the Bucharest-Ilfov Region, sharing good practices, and especially to develop new contacts at our networking cocktail.

The target audience is: representatives of DG REGIO, representatives of European decision-makers, experts from public&private institutions for exchanging and discussing projects and issues related to regional and local development andmass media.

More informations and the draft agenda are available on our website at:

Contact: Simona Curpan

Registration: Attendance is free of charge, registration is required on our website:


Migration: An active role for the Regions

14 October 2015, 16:30
Region of North Aegean (Greece), Region of Calabria, Region of Sicily 
Venue: European Parliament, Altiero Spinelli building, 60 rue Wiertz / Wiertzstraat, Brussels

The event will focus on the use of the EU funds related to migration and the need for the Regions to play a more decisive role in their use being directly involved as beneficiaries. We plan to present ideas and share best practices and discuss on ways to improve access to finance for Regions that are in emergency need –either as first reception centers or for integration actions.

Contact: Nikos Lampropoulos


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Regional BioEconomy Marketplace

14 October 2015, 17:00 - 19:30
BERST consortium and ERRIN
Venue: Scotland House - Rond Point Schuman 6, Brussels

This event is an absolute 'must-go-to' for people who are involved in building up the regional bioeconomy or in developing bioeconomy supporting policies. We will show tools that can strengthen bioeconomy development; you will get to touch with bioeconomy policymakers and experts; and you will be updated on bioeconomy trends and news, including European policies.

Contact: Ingrid Coninx

Registration: Please, be on time to register at:


The Future of Logistics in Northern Europe

14 October 2015, 17:30
Regional Council of Kymenlaakso
Venue: Helsinki EU-Office - Rue Belliard 15-17, B-1040 Brussels

The event is arranged by Kymenlaakso Region as a reception type event.

The program will consist of seminar (2-3 presentations) + networking cocktail.

The event will address the development themes of Logistics in Northern Europe and around Baltic Sea Region.

Kymenlaakso Region is part of Northern Growth Zone and one of the main logistics corridors between EU and East.

Target audience consists of regional policy makers and practitioners, higher education institutions and companies.

Program will include a key note speech given by one of the EU official bodies and presentations from Kymenlaakso Region and other organization according to the theme.

Contact: Kari Kokkonen



Explore Danube Flavours

14 October 2015, 18:30 - 21:00
Regional Development Agency Backa and Destination Management Organization Danube
Venue: Science Atrium Building, Rue De La Science 14B, Brussels

RDA Backa will present example how with support to the tourism related SMEs in rural are we can foster development of unique tourist destination in Backa Region along the Danube, Tisa and Fruska gora.


1. MSc Srdjan Vezmar, CEO, Regional development agency Backa

2. Jasmina Beljan Iskrin, Destionation management organisation Danube

3. Miroslav Vasin, Deputy Prime Minister of the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina

4. Gordana Plamenac, CEO, National tourism organization of Serbia

5. Boris Camernik, General secretary, Danube Competence Center

All attendees of the event are also invited to the gastro experience and wine tasting of the finest autochthonous wine cultivars from the unique wine region of Backa and Fruska gora, located at the heart of the Vojvodina Region (Republic of Serbia).

Contact: MSc. Srdjan Vezmar

Registration: By email: no later than October 10th, 2015

Challenges and Opportunities for Cities

14 October 2015, 18:30 - 22:00
Venue: Foyer Européen-European Trainees Residence - 17 rue Traversiere, B- 1210 Bruxelles

We are in a period of transitions that are having social, environmental, economic and political impacts on cities. These impacts are rapidly creating new opportunities and challenges for cities.   What light does EU research throw upon the new challenges and opportunities that cities are now facing?

We are pleased to have Dr. Domenico Rossetti di Valdabero from DG Research and Innovation, who will initiate a process of real discussion and dialogue by presenting the results of several EU research projects and what actions they highlight for cities in a rapidly changing context.

Come and take part in a convivial and informative event with a strong focus on discussion and dialogue.

The programme will begin at 18:30 with an aperitif. At 19:00 we will have the input from our guest speaker and this will be followed by dinner and discussion in small groups. From 21:00 we will have feedback and then there will be time for networking until 22:00. Registration is obligatory by email.

Contact: Chiara Vestrini

Registration: via email to:

Contribution of the Slovak Republic to the European Research Area. New Research Infrastructure

15 October 2015, 09:00 - 15:00
Slovak Liaison Office for Research and Development (SLORD), Ministry of Education, Science, Research and Sport of the Slovak Republic, Slovak Centre for Scientific and Technical Information, Permanent Representation of Slovak Republic to the EU
Venue: Premises of the Permanent Representation of the Slovak Republic to the EU - Avenue de Cortenbergh 107, 1000 Brussels

Since 2007 till 2013 Slovak Republic invested more than €1.4 billion from European structural funds in research and development (10% of overall allocation) particularly in building of new research infrastructure. During the seven years, brand new research infrastructure has been established or upgraded in all key research institutions. These investments also support new cooperation between academia and industry and therefore improve technology transfer of new knowledge.

The main goal of Slovakia is to build centers of excellence of European importance through the integration of these infrastructures and new upgrades funded from European Investment and Structural Funds in period 2013-2020. Slovakia is with four supported projects together with Portugal the most successful country in Teaming for Excellence first call for proposals.

The main aim of the conference is to introduce new Universities science parks and Research centers in different scientific areas. The event will provide space and opportunity for establishing further research collaboration.

Contact: Daniel Straka

Registration: Please, register online by 13 October 2015 -


Using data to foster city innovation and SME growth: Open data in European cities

15 October 2015, 09:15 - 14:00
Future Cities Catapult, Bristol City Council
Venue: Bristol Brussels Office, London House, 108 Rue du Trone, 1050 Brussels

Open data is not only a new legal obligation for European cities, but also an opportunity for them to promote growth and encourage innovation among local businesses and SMEs. Featuring tangible good practices from Bristol, Amsterdam, Tampere and Carbon Visuals SME, this workshop will underline the economic growth potential stemming from the collaboration between cities and entrepreneurs. The session will showcase models of how cities across Europe can use data to upgrade or stimulate local services and grow their SME community.

The workshop will be led by:

  • Peter Madden, CEO, Future Cities Catapult - moderator of the session
  • Cristobal Irazoqui, Policy Officer Smart Cities and Sustainability, European Commission
  • Stephen Hilton, Director – Bristol Futures, Bristol City Council
  • Katalin Gallyas, Open Innovation Policy Advisor, Amsterdam City Council
  • Jokinen Jari, Development Manager, Tampere Region Economic Development Agency
  • Antony Turner, CEO and Adam Nieman, Creative Director, Carbon Visuals

Contact: Valerija Slavina - Paul Davies

Registration: Please, register online by 9 October 2015


Czech is Nano - overview of the nanotechnology sector in the Czech Republic

15 October 2015, 10:00 - 13:00
CzechInvest (the Investment and Business Development Agency of the Czech Republic) - CZELO (Czech Liaison Office for Research, Development and Innovation)
Venue: Permanent Representation of the Czech Republic to the European Union, Rue Caroly 15, Brussels

Main aim of this event is to provide an overview of the nanotechnology sector in the Czech Republic with several case studies of successful companies with high international profile (Contipro, IQ Structures, Pardam) and to offer a networking platform to establish closer contacts between various parts of the nanotechnology field in the European Union. Apart from the introduction, the topics will cover the areas of nanomedicine, 3D nanoprinting, and nanostructures for energy storage or security measures. Among the speakers will be high level representatives from the Czech Republic as well as from the European Commission and Czech nanotechnology stakeholders.

Contact: Jiří Fusek - Kateřina Slavíková

Registration: All participants are kindly requested to register in advance by completing the registration form at before October 12, 2015.


Excellence without Borders: R&D Cooperation Across the Innovation Divide

15 October 2015, 15:00 - 19:00
Neth-ER (Netherlands House for Education and Research) - VSNU (Association of Universities in The Netherlands) - Supported by the Permanent Representation of the Kingdom of The Netherlands to the EU
Venue: Permanent Representation of The Kingdom of The Netherlands

Excellence in R&D knows no boundaries and is therefore not confined to any geographical area. However, the existing innovation divide undermines a modern Europe and a single European Research Area. Initiatives that attempt to integrate Europe’s regions, such as the Energy Union and the Digital Single Market, cannot exist without nourishing talent and connecting excellence in R&D.

This network event aims at connecting researchers, policy advisors and other staff of knowledge institutes from countries that are eligible under the Horizon 2020 Spreading Excellence and Widening Participation actions and from The Netherlands. In addition, national and regional authorities are cordially invited as well, as they are key players in the regional Smart Specialisation Strategy.

Contact: Tim Buiting


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