The Clusters Meet Regions event took place between 21-23 November 2023 in Iași, the largest university campus in the North-East Region of Romania.
This edition was centered around the role of clusters as reliable dialogue partners in the design, implementation and ongoing monitoring of regional development policies and programmes with a focus on smart specialization, skills for the industrial transition and entrepreneurship.
“Supporting clusters could have a multiplying effect on improving regional competitiveness” believes Iva Maric, Programme Manager, DG Regio, Unit E2 (Romania and Croatia).
A particular emphasis was put on the international and interregional cluster-cooperation in relation to Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova against the wider Danube Region perspective.
“Clusters represent an ecosystem where entrepreneurs can grow faster, limit certain risks, develop skills, new products and services and offer collaborative relationships” highlighted Vasile Asandei, General Director, North-East Regional Development Agency.
With an impressive number of 205 participants at the event, from all over Europe and 85 attendees who took part in 158 bilateral meetings during the #ECCPMatchmaking, we can clearly say that “Clusters as drivers of regional innovation ecosystems” was a success!
“2023 is the European year of skills and I believe clusters can also play a key role in the reskilling and upskilling of workers at the regional level” outlines Mariella Masselink, Head of Unit, DG GROW, European Commission.
It was a complex event, with multiple panel discussions (covering topics from textiles, bioeconomy to regional programs for cluster financing), presentations and pitches, matchmaking sessions, with the aim of promoting interregional collaboration, sharing best practices for encouraging and facilitating internationalization and cross-border cooperation.
“Cluster organisations are enablers” – Jonathan Loeffler, CEO of Steinbeis Europa Zentrum.
We want to express our gratitude to all those who attended the #ClustersMeetRegions and generously shared their insights on the event topics!