CAFEIN team at the Clusters Meet Regions in Malmö (Sweden)

On 15th and 16th June 2023, the CAFEIN team and members of the IFAB (Innovation Funding Advisory Board) participated in the CLUSTERS MEET REGIONS event held in Malmö (Sweden) continuing to work intensively on the design of a new joint action plan to support SMEs in their green and digital transition.

CAFEIN’s participation in CLUSTERS MEET REGIONS was a fruitful opportunity to present and introduce the project, its objectives and early achievements to the stakeholders who were present at the event, while meeting and networking with other European clusters.

During the event, titled “Clusters as Drivers of Innovation in Industrial Systems,” it was also possible to learn about the best examples across Scania’s areas of specialization and discuss how clusters can be integrated into the design and implementation of regional development policies.

Clusters are drivers of regional competitiveness, growth, employment and innovation and serve as key accelerators and facilitators for digital and green transitions and for strengthening resilience through the identification of needs and opportunities.

The event saw the participation of more than 100 representatives from EU clusters and companies, national and regional public authorities and business support organizations from Sweden and other EU regions, researchers, innovation agencies, industry associations and investors.

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CAFEIN hosted its Workshop on Regional Ecosystems

CAFEIN successfully hosted its inaugural workshop on regional ecosystems on May 2nd, bringing together 23 participants from the partner countries France, Italy, Poland, Spain, and Sweden. During the workshop, CAFEIN partners presented insights into their respective national and regional ecosystems, highlighting their unique characteristics. The workshop offered an invaluable opportunity to gain a comprehensive understanding of these ecosystems. External participants also contributed to the discussions, sharing their experiences with policy tools and initiatives that can facilitate the green transition for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

The workshop generated several noteworthy lessons and suggestions that can be incorporated into the forthcoming joint action plan within the CAFEIN project:

1. Simplification of support systems and instruments – it is crucial to streamline both the processes associated with these instruments and the involvement of relevant actors;
2. Enhanced coordination at the national and regional levels – in addition to aligning policies, efforts should be made to identify the optimal synergy, articulation and complementarity between them;
3. Exploring opportunities for mutualization – rather than each cluster implementing independent activities, there is potential for pooling resources, particularly by partnering with regions outside of Europe;
4. Facilitating knowledge exchange: the workshop highlighted the importance of creating mechanisms that enable effective knowledge sharing among stakeholders;
5. Utilizing cluster labeling can be an effective mean of promoting EUCLES;
6. Advancing internationalization strategies – going beyond participation in fairs and events, CAFEIN, as Team Europe does, can leverage these occasions to further its objectives;
7. Collaboration with research entities and companies – CAFEIN should actively engage with other research players, including companies, to foster fruitful cooperation;
8. Examination of the Regional Innovation Valley – it is crucial for CAFEIN to assess this concept and determine the appropriate approach for positioning itself;
9. Assisting SMEs in accessing EU funding – CAFEIN should support SMEs in their application for European Union funding for Green Deal Research and Innovation, otherwise member states would not renew it.

In designing the action plan, the following recommendations should be considered:

1. Provide an overview of effective solutions that can be utilized;
2. Identify specific issues that require targeted interventions;
3. Address the challenges related to talent acquisition and skill development for SMEs.

As a final note, CAFEIN encouraged participants to join its partners and partake in Malmö’s Cluster Meet Regions event on June 15.

CAFEIN launches the SMEs needs survey

CAFEIN partners have launched a survey to gather information about the needs of European SMEs. Companies are invited to complete the survey by providing information about their experiences with public innovation support, green transition related activities and international cooperation practices.

Each partner will now promote the survey within their network and involve as many companies as possible.

The results of this survey will be critical to best define the next steps of the project and will contribute to highlight the most needed areas to be covered by public funding schemes dedicated to green transition.

Click here to complete the survey!

CAFEIN partners meet the IFAB members

The second meeting between CAFEIN Partners and IFAB (Innovation Funding Advisory Board) finally took place. It was a great opportunity to discuss the project advancements and strengthen the collaboration for a better implementation of the upcoming CAFEIN activities.

Each partner presented the Cluster Policies of the represented country allowing the participants to align on the respective clusters scenarios in Europe. The national agencies shared their international collaboration and innovation funding policy priorities for 2023.

Together, CAFEIN partners and IFAB will now find shared strategies for supporting a green industrial transition by proposing the deployment of policies, tools and funding instruments able to match SMEs’ needs in Europe.

CAFEIN is online!

The CAFEIN partners officially launched the website and the project social media profiles.

The website will be used to communicate the project advancements and to involve interested stakeholders in the project activities. By interacting with the project, interested entities can join CAFEIN’s network, consult the project public deliverables, subscribe to the CAFEIN newsletter and register for the events organized by the partners.

CAFEIN launched its Twitter and LinkedIn profiles as well to maximize the impact of the communication activities.

CAFEIN Project Kick-Off meeting

On 19th and 20th September 2022, the first kick-off meeting between the CAFEIN project partners and the members of the IFAB (Innovation Funding Advisory Board) was held in Paris (France) at the headquarters of Bpi France and AFPC (project coordinator).

The kick-off meeting was a fruitful opportunity for the partners to meet for the first time in person, deepening their knowledge and allowing them to lay a solid foundation for the success of the project.

During the meetings  it was possible to outline ideas and coordinate the actions to be taken to achieve the CAFEIN project objectives. The project aims to prepare a joint long-term action plan between the partners’ countries to address green and digital industrial transition challenges throug a collaborative approach ensured bu the involbement of both the national clusters’ associations and the national innovation funding agencies.

CAFEIN project officialy starts today

The partners are delighted to announce that CAFEIN project officialy starts today!

In the next 24 months CAFEIN members will work together with national funding agencies to address the European SMEs needs and adopt a joint action plan for the green industrial transition in Europe.

The newxt step will be the first kick-off meeting in Paris on 19th and 20th of September, where the CAFEIN partners and the members of the IFAB (Innovation Funding Advisory Board) will meet in person for the first time. The meeting will be also an opportunity to set a timetable for the first objetives of CAFEIN, such as a SME survey and the launch of the website.

Stay tuned for more updates on this project!

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