Call to organise events as part of the 'EU Cluster Weeks 2018-2019'
The European Commission will launch the very first edition of the 'EU Cluster Weeks 2018-2019' between November 2018 and April 2019. This initiative promotes national, regional and local cluster events under the 'EU Cluster Weeks’ brand and at the European Cluster Collaboration Platform. Submissions of expressions of interests are now possible.
The EU Cluster Weeks are an opportunity to
- encourage European participation and partnering at national, regional and local cluster events;
- team up to increase awareness on the role of clusters and the results they achieve; and
- jointly collect feedback on common challenges and what needs to be done to address them in the next generation of regional, national and EU cluster initiatives.
The campaign will support national, regional and local cluster events organised across the EU under the EU Cluster Weeks umbrella by promoting the events through the Commission's and the European Cluster Collaboration Platform‘s social media accounts, as well as by making available promotional and guidance material for the organisation of events.
The EU Cluster Weeks will further be an opportunity for stakeholders to contribute to the shaping of future cluster initiatives, including Joint Cluster Initiatives under the forthcoming Single Market Programme, as the campaign will also gather feed-back about the main challenges and needs for action. It will be your chance to Have your Say! #EUCLUSTERWEEKS
The campaign will take place between 20th November 2018 and 30th April 2019 during which events can be organised under the EU Cluster Weeks umbrella. The present call for expressions of interest for conference organisers will remain open until end of March 2019. Event notifications will be continuously checked and published at the European Cluster Collaboration Platform once validated, within a maximum of two weeks’ time.
The EU Cluster Weeks will be kicking off with two major pre-identified launch events in November 2018, with other events advertised once notifications are received:
- The Joint Romanian-Hungarian International Cluster Conference on 20-22 November 2018 and
- The Danish Future Week organised by the Danish cluster community and Cluster Excellence Denmark on 26-30 November 2018.
How to Register your event
Who can apply?
The campaign will support any national, regional and local cluster event that is:
- organised by cluster stakeholders or
- organised around the 'cluster' topic or a specific topic closely related to it.
All relevant events will be featured on the European Cluster Collaboration Platform.
Being branded under the 'EU Cluster Weeks', your event:
- will be published on the European Cluster Collaboration Platform in the 'EU Cluster Weeks' web section and calendar of events, where you will also have the possibility to report on your event page after it has taken place;
- will receive promotional support from the European Cluster Collaboration Platform through its channels (Weekly Digest and social media);
- can take advantage of a promotional tool kit, including the 'EU Cluster Weeks' visual identity, a video on EU Cluster Initiatives, a digital leaflet, templates for survey and press articles etc.;
- may be selected for reporting by a limited number of on-site rapporteurs who will be pointed to attend and report on larger-scale events; and
- have a chance to bring its outcome to a wider audience and feed into the discussions on future EU cluster initiatives during the European Cluster Conference that will take place in Bucharest on 14-16 May 2019 (Save the date!).
You will be informed on the success of your request within a few days following submission date.
In its renewed EU industrial policy strategy, the Commission highlighted in 2017 its efforts "for facilitating a dialogue on cluster policy excellence" and "to better use clusters as a strategic tool of industrial policy". The 2017 Smart Specialisation Communication and the 2016 Start-up and Scale-up Communication also underlined the need "to connect clusters and ecosystems across Europe" and the strategic role that clusters play for helping SMEs to innovate and grow and for building strong interregional collaboration as part of European and global value chains.
Consequently, the Commission also foresees Joint Cluster Initiatives as a key tool for boosting industrial modernisation and strengthening the business environment for SMEs under the COSME part of the forthcoming Single Market Programme proposed for 2021 – 2027. The EU Cluster Weeks also hope to encourage stakeholders to contribute to shaping this future initiative.
The 2016 Smart Guide to Cluster Policy advocates a modern cluster policy approach that builds upon and connects regional strength and smart specialisation priorities; creates innovation and investment opportunities through cross-sectoral collaboration; and supports the growth of "groups of SMEs" in related industries – as opposed to supporting SMEs individually.
EU Member States also called in the 2018 Council Conclusions on the EU Industrial Policy Strategy "for the further development of the European cluster policy, with the aim of linking-up and scaling-up regional clusters into cross-European world-class clusters, based on smart specialisation principles, in order to support the emergence of new value chains across Europe".
The idea of organising EU Cluster Weeks as an opportunity to team up with Member States and regions in the awareness-raising efforts followed from the reported successful organisation of national cluster week events, such as in Germany and Denmark, and national flagship cluster events in France, Romania and other countries. The lessons learned of these events were also discussed during meetings of the European Cluster Policy Forum in 2018, where the majority of Member States expressed a potential interest in teaming up at EU level.