Economic networks and clusters play crucial role in economic growth and development in Europe. According to the European Cluster Observatory, approximately 38% of all European employees work in enterprises that are part of the cluster sector. Clusters and university-industry incubators such as Silicon Glen in the United Kingdom, Sophia Antipolis in France, or the food processing and equipment cluster in northern Italy (Parma, Modena, Bologna, Milan, Turin) are models for development of high value-adding, export-oriented sectors which support national competitiveness and transform regional economies.
European Commission research indicates a positive correlation between the strength of regional portfolios (human resources, patent applications, employment in medium - and high-tech manufacturing) and regional innovation performance. Existing economic networks in Poland and Lithuania encounter challenges with performance management as well as business animation and coordination.
The objective of the project is to support networks, defined as business incubators, professional associations and sectoral groups, in their long-term strategic development through training and competency development.
This involves the creation of strategic business performance and management plans designed to:
Increase economic activity in the network through investment promotion and business incubation
Increase interest of domestic and foreign investment
Encourage company starts-up and entrepreneurship
Increase the number of spin offs
Increase the effectiveness of economic performance
These plans, developed through action learning and strategic training, will increase the managerial skills of managers and facilitators in clusters and clusters initiatives in Poland and Lithuania. Project activities include:
Assessing the actual competence of the selected trainers in business performance management
Training 20 trainers on managing and animation the business networks
Developing 20 Plans of business performance management
Developing a Management Tool Kit on strategic planning for business incubation and cluster management
Pilot testing and revising the 20 Plans
Developing a textbook and articles on business performance management in European networks
Disseminating the results of the project in 2 international conferences.
Partners in the project include:
Foundation for Local Government, Poznan, Poland (consortium leader)
Navigator Consulting Partners LLP, London, United Kingdom
The Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Wielkopolska, Poland
The Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Kaunas, Lithuania
The Human Capital Research and Development Institute of Kaunas, Lithuania
Navigator Consulting’s role is to develop and transfer innovative management techniques and methods based on experience from the United Kingdom and elsewhere. The training and development activities will include elements such as:
network animation and management
encouraging entrepreneurship, start ups
B2B cooperation projects
Managing R&D in companies
cooperation with other networks in Europe
forecasting and strategic analysis
branding and promotion
conflict management or commercialisation
The project started in November 2011 and will last for 2 years. Results will be disseminating on the Navigator Consulting website as well as the European Consulting Network (www.ecn-eu.com) and other platforms.