Rebooting Regional Policy for Innovation and Growth
The ‘Week of Innovative Regions in Europe’ (WiRE2014) will take place this year in Athens (June 12-13th) under the auspices of the Greek EU Presidency. Since 2010, the Week of Innovative Regions in Europe (WIRE) Conference Series serves as a key instrument in setting the European Regional Agenda and provides the most significant forum for policy dialogue on Regional Strategies, Innovation and Growth. Today, the Conference Series has been established as a key actor in cultivating the debate leading to recommendations for optimal use of policies for regional development.
WIRE 2014 is hosted by the Greek EU Presidency and is being organized by the National Documentation Centre of Greece (EKT) and the European Commission, in collaboration with the General Secretariat for Research and Technology. The Conference is listed as one of the most significant events of the Greek EU Presidency and aims to build on the previous events adding knowledge, debate and expertise for supporting innovation and growth.
The launch of “Horizon 2020″ programme for Research and Innovation, and the new regulation for the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) announced within the first semester of 2014, provide an excellent timing for this year’s WIRE. At this critical point, the Conference will build on the public dialogue for the discovery of effective procedures, instruments and best practices leading to the successful implementation of Smart Specialisation Strategies for European Regions.
This year’s conference takes place at a time where EU adopts a new perspective on regional policy, one which focuses on the concept of smart specialization and the facilitation of a results-oriented policy agenda. EU Reformed cohesion policy 2014-2020 reflects a growing need to respond effectively to the conditions created by the economic turndown and seeks to ensure maximum impact on growth and jobs, investing in all EU regions and targeting resources at key growth sectors.
The conference will bring in contact leading agents in the field of policy making, enterprises, politics and innovation at a national and European level and will promote dialogue on three main topics:
- European Funding for Regional Development in 2014-2020
- Business Driving Regional Innovation
- Scientific Excellence, Open data and Knowledge re-use for regional growth
At the political level, the Conference is expected to produce recommendations on the interaction of different instruments for addressing the widening innovation divide among European regions as well as guidelines on open innovation and knowledge diffusion for efficient regional policies. At the programme level, WIRE 2014 will provide feedback and proposals on the use of running instruments.