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S3: International and territorial cooperation

Summary of the European Alliance Against Coronavirus Daily Webinar on 11 September 2020

Smart specialisation is an ambitious regional policy. Kevin Morgan from Cardiff University opened the session with a reflection on the achievements of S3 and its areas where it needs improvement. International and territorial cooperation is one of the fields which has remained underdeveloped. The regions need real synergies, which do not only exist on paper. We need to empower industry-ed, cross-border alliances to strengthen our regions.

Anaïs Le Corvec, CEBR, presented the projects Boost4Health, CE4BIG and SIGs, which show how collaboration can be implemented successfully at different levels. She states that the COVID-19 crisis has only shown the need for more territorial and sectorial collaboration, more policy synergies in the next EU funds, and digitisation as a transversal support. 

Valentina Pinna, DG GROW, explained the new Interregional Innovation Instruments (I3), which will provide financial and advisory support for investments in interregional innovation projects (for mature partnerships) and the development of value chains in less developed regions (capacity building). She made clear that the interregional collaboration must follow the logic of the value chain, not proximity. 

Ilari Havukainen from the Regional Council of Lapland gave an overview of the region collaboration in East and Northern Finland. The identified cross-cutting competences that form the base for the common priorities in the implementation of their strategy are clean technologies and low-carbon solutions, circular economy, and digitisation.

Slawomir Tokarski, Director F – Industrial Policy and Innovation of DG GROW, closed the session by confirming that clusters are crucial to design and implement a smarter Europe by promoting innovative and smart economic transformation. They can contribute to enhancing R&I capacities and the uptake of advanced technologies, digitisation ​for citizens, companies and governments, developing skills for S3, industrial transition and entrepreneurship, and the growth and competitiveness of SMEs.

More information on

A recording of the session is available here.  

These are the presentations shown during the meeting:

Finally, please find information on the upcoming agenda here.