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European Commission S3 Newsletter
Joint Research Centre
In this issue - February 2017

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Launch of the New S3 Newsletter
Dear Stakeholders, we are pleased to launch the new S3 Newsletter. It aims to provide information related to Smart Specialisation Strategies (S3) and promote exchanges among communities of practice, including inter alia Managing Authorities, Members of the S3 Platform, Higher Education Institutions as well as EU bodies. In the challenging phase of RIS3 implementation, we encourage all stakeholders to submit relevant material regarding their activities and the further development of research and innovation driven growth using the Short Guide provided below. Thank you in advance for your input, The S3 Platform team
See also : To provide information for the S3 Newsletter: A Short Guide
A handbook for S3 implementation
Drawing on empirical evidence,"Implementing Smart Specialisation Strategies: A Handbook" is targeted at policy-makers and regional development professionals who are crafting their innovation policy according to a common set of principles and methodologies. It aims to distil accumulated experience with the novel smart specialisation strategies and presents state of the art lessons, both in terms of conceptual developments and practical implementation. It addresses five key aspects of the implementation process: (1) The Entrepreneurial discovery process cycle; (2) Good governance; (3) From priorities to projects; (4) Transnational cooperation and value chains and (5) Monitoring.
See also : Learning from practice: please submit new examples
Public consultation on Smart Specialisation
The objective of this public consultation launched by DG REGIO is to collect views and suggestions, to understand challenges and to identify good practices and lessons learnt from the different categories of stakeholders and regions for the further development of research and innovation driven growth through Smart specialisation strategies. Period of consultation: from 21.12.2016 to 24.03.2017.
Upcoming Events
16 February 2017
Lagging Regions: working group on RIS3 monitoring
During the first meeting of the JRC Lagging Regions Working Group on Monitoring, representatives from the project's partner regions will examine their approaches to RIS3 monitoring with the support of independent experts. The outcomes of the event will provide the basis for online learning material. This event will be followed by a meeting of the project's dedicated advisory group of "Critical Friends". These meetings will take place on 16th and 17th February 2017 in Barcelona, at the European Commission representation.
See also : RIS3 Support in Lagging Regions' project
21 February 2017
EDP Focus Group on ICT in N-W Romania
Organised in cooperation with the JRC Lagging Regions project, this event gathers together a broad range of stakeholders to analyse current trends in ICT and ways to accelerate the further expansion of the sector. The event will have a particular focus on opportunities for the development of new, innovative products and technology transfer, supported by ERDF funds. It will take place on 21st February 2017 in Cluj, in the North-West region of Romania.
See also : RIS3 Support in Lagging Regions' project
8 March 2017
Stairway to Excellence - High Level Conference
Within the broader context of the S3 activities, the 2017 Conference on the synergies between Horizon 2020 and ESIF provides an opportunity to present the achievement of the project, lessons learnt and discuss challenges ahead with regional and national managing authorities who are dealing with R&I funds. It is organized under the auspices of the European Parliament on 8th March 2017 in Brussels.
9 March 2017
Thematic Workshop on H2020 and ESIF synergies
The workshop "Aligning implementation of RIS3 and H2020 Funding across research priorities" aims at creating a forum for exchange of best practices and enhancing synergies between H2020 and European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF), in relation with specific thematic areas. It targets key stakeholders, including H2020 NCPs, managing authorities as well as regional / national authorities dealing with ESIF. It will take on 9th March 2017 in Brussels.
S3 Publications and Tools
Synergies for Innovation: Lessons from S2E National Events
This Policy Insight summarises the main lessons learnt from the Stairway to Excellence (S2E) project during the 2015/2016 national events that provided a unique platform for a better understanding of the European and national R&I ecosystems. It also demonstrates how Smart Specialisation Strategies and synergies between different European funds can help closing the innovation gap across European territories.
See also : Stairway to Excellence's project
In the Regions & Member States
S3 as a Driving Force for Growth: an Example in 2 Regions
Euronews highlights the positive impact of the Smart Specialisation framework in Emilia-Romagna (Italy) and Pomorskie (Poland).
S3 in Ostrobothnia
The Regional Council of Ostrobothnia (Finland) has produced a video which highlights its experience on Smart Specialisation Strategies and collaboration with Chile.
Smart Stories: Evidence from Lapland
The Smart Stories reflect the way in which managing authorities have used the S3 concept to develop their own innovation-driven regional development policies. This month, evidence is given from Lapland (Finland), with a focus on the promotion of regional clusters to refine natural resources, build on inter-regional and international collaboration.
See also : See more stories and share yours
S3 Platform Membership
New Members of the S3 Platform
Several regions have joined the S3 Platform recently: Møre og Romsdal (Norway), Steiermark (Austria), the region of Manisa-Afyonkarahisar-Kütahya-Usak (Turkey). In total, there are 18 EU Member States and 2 non-EU countries, as well 170 EU and 9 non-EU regions that have registered to the S3 Platform.
See also : View registered countries and regions' profile
New Dimensions of Smart Specialisation
Launch of a Pilot Project to Build Capacities Beyond the EU
In January 2017, the S3 Platform organised a kick-off seminar for a new pilot project with enlargement and neighbourhood countries. Government representatives and stakeholders from six countries engaged in very constructive discussions with experts and Commission officials to draft realistic roadmaps for designing RIS3 in their challenging contexts. In the next 2 years, capacity-building efforts will focus on Moldova, Serbia and Ukraine.
22 February 2017
Innovation in Rural Areas - ENRD
In 2017, the European Network for Rural Development (ENRD) is organising a series of events about innovation in rural areas with relevant linkages with smart specialisation: 1) Extending LEADER Innovation on 22 February 2017 in Bruxelles. The workshop will focus on the different ways in which Local Action Groups and other actors can strengthen and improve innovation in LEADER at local, regional, national and EU levels, including smart specialisation strategies. 2) "Rural Businesses - The Future Is Now" on 30 March 2017 in Bruxelles. The seminar will focus on “revitalising rural areas through business innovation” and examine key EU policies and tools for business innovation (digitisation, smart specialisation, social innovation) and showcase inspiring examples of rural business innovation.
Contact : ENRD Contact Point Team
Calls & Expression of Interests
2017 International Award on Local Development
The University of the Algarve will host an International Conference on Local Development during which a number of awards for contributions to local development will be presented. The Award Ceremony is the centrepiece of the conference which will include a roundtable on smart specialisation, convened by the S3 Platform. The call for proposing candidacies for the awards is open until 15th April 2017.
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