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Innovation Hubs for Regional Development: Experiences, Challenges, Solutions

On May 25-26, 2023 the »Potsdam International Forum – Innovation Hubs for Regional Development: Experiences, Challenges, Solutions« brought together decision makers and experts developing and managing science parks and innovation hubs, as well as partners from the public sector, the private sector and non-profit organizations. The two-day-event aimed to foster exchange between policy makers and practitioners actively building innovation hubs and ecosystems in science parks and beyond.

On May 25-26, 2023 the »Potsdam International Forum – Innovation Hubs for Regional Development: Experiences, Challenges, Solutions« brought together decision makers and experts developing and managing science parks and innovation hubs, as well as partners from the public sector, the private sector and non-profit organizations. The two-day-event aimed to foster exchange between policy makers and practitioners actively building innovation hubs and ecosystems in science parks and beyond.

Together, participants took into focus practical approaches, strategies and integrated toolkits for developing and managing innovation hubs within their particular environment. Based on shared experiences, they identified common or unique challenges and pinpoint solutions. Prototypes of interfaces for future collaboration or joint projects to address challenges together were presented on day two of the conference.

Download the conference program here (PDF, 2.26 MB)

Keynotes

A New European Innovation Agenda for Europe – A Regional Policy Perspective
Dr Wolfgang Münch – European Commission, Deputy Head of Unit ‘Smart and Sustainable Growth’

Innovation and the Role of Science Parks – Driving European Innovation Ecosystems
Dr Xabier Goenaga Beldarrain – European Commission, Joint Research Center (JRC), Head of Unit ‘Innovation Policies and Economic Impact’

Reinforcing Our International Dimension – Trends and Challenges of Science Parks and Areas of Innovation
Ebba Lund – CEO, International Association of Science Parks and Areas of Innovation IASP

Transnational European Cooperations of Innovation Ecosystems – Successful Projects
Prof. Taina Tukiainen – Research Director, Prof. for Sustainability, Corporate Entrepreneurship and Innovation, University of Vaasa, Finland

Workshops

A) Driving Science Park Ecosystems and Communities – Best Practice Tools and Methods to Support Highly Adaptable Innovation-Centered Communities

Building dynamic communities and strengthening linkages between all players – including universities, research institutions, startups, large companies, specialised service providers and their employees – is considered a cross-cutting key success factor for the development of sciences parks. Unlocking the potential of complex partner networks requires specific skills, tools and processes, which will be addressed in this workshop. Participants will reflect how dynamic communities can be built and how they can contribute to creating an inspiring working atmosphere, stimulating collaborative innovation activities, gaining access to resource networks and attracting talent and investment. Particular emphasis will be on discussing concrete tools and formats that have proven effective and could be jointly refined or complemented.

  • Ignite Talk: Mieke de Bruin – Community Manager, Utrecht Science Park, The Netherlands
  • Ignite Talk: Dr Jernej Pintar – CEO & Head of Tech Community at Technology Park Ljubljana, Slovenia

B) Soft Landing Programs and Their Success Factors – Attractive Services for Start-Ups, SMEs and Scientific Institutes in Regional and Interregional Contexts

International experience shows that soft-landing schemes are well received by startups, SMEs and large companies. At the same time, the exposure and cooperation with other innovation hubs contributes towards strengthening the capacities and contact networks of science park management organizations. Against that background, the discussion in this workshop will centre on recent and emerging trends in designing soft-landing schemes to identify promising opportunities for collaboration between the participants. Options for widening the scope of soft-landing schemes will be jointly explored. Amongst others, this relates to shifting the focus towards project-oriented support and mobilizing the potential of large companies, universities and research institutions, e.g. for mentorship programs.

  • Ignite Talk: Fredrik Larsson – Digital Strategist & Communication Manager, Linköping Science Park, Sweden
  • Ignite Talk: Ferran Huidobro Casamitjana – International Project Manager, Parque TecnoCampus Mataró-Maresme, Spain

C) Orchestrating Innovation Hubs – Science Parks as Part of Innovation Systems

The development of science parks and innovation systems relies upon a collaborative approach across different departments, administrative levels and stakeholder groups, which requires efficient and dynamic coordination processes. Drawing on an exchange of experience between participants from e.g. ministries, local administrations, academia, companies, park management and economic development organizations, this workshop aims at identifying common design principles and innovative practices to orchestrate innovation hubs.
In a working session, participants will map their innovation systems to identify and share promising policies and formats to foster and orchestrate cross-sector collaboration. The workshop will focus on the regional and interregional level and in particular on Metropolitan areas.

  • Ignite Talk: Dr Jukka Viitanen – leading expert in managing the innovation platforms, Helsinki, Uusimaa, Finland
  • Ignite Talk: Steffen Terberl – Head of Business Office „Zukunftsorte“, WISTA Management GmbH, Germany (request)
  • Impulse: Xabier Goenaga Beldarrain – Head of Unit ‘Innovation Policies and Economic Impact’, Joint Research Center (JRC), European Commission

D) Green Shift to Sustainability – Science Parks as Model Scenarios for Designing a Sustainable Future

Science parks can play an important role in the green transition by harnessing and leveraging synergies between several actors. Experts agree that this requires a comprehensive approach encompassing different dimensions which will be addressed in this workshop. To explore ideas for future collaborative initiatives, one key focus will be on measures to reduce the carbon footprint of science parks and their tenants – e.g. with sustainable mobility, renewable energy and smart water management solutions. In addition, participants will discuss how the transition towards a low carbon and circular economy can be aided and fast-tracked by providing targeted incubation programmes and innovation support as part of the parks’ service portfolio. The workshop will conclude with a look at how the identified options can be implemented taking into account the organizational and financing dimension of science parks.

  • Ignite Talk: Dr Justyna Adamska – Deputy Director, Poznan Science and Technology Park, Poland
  • Ignite Talk: Fabio Morea – Head of Sustainability and Mobility Manager, Area Science Park, Trieste, Italy

Hosts

  • Prof. Dr.-Ing. Jörg Steinbach – Minister of Economic Affairs, Labour and Energy of the State of Brandenburg, Germany
  • Jobst-Hinrich Ubbelohde – State Secretary for European Affairs, Brandenburg Ministry of Finance and for European Affairs, Germany
  • Prof. Oliver Günther, PhD – President, University of Potsdam, Germany
  • Agnes von Matuschka – CEO, Standortmanagement Golm GmbH, Potsdam Science Park, Germany

Representatives of the European Commission

  • Dr Wolfgang Münch – Deputy Head of Unit ‘Smart and Sustainable Growth’
  • Dr Xabier Goenaga Beldarrain – European Commission, Joint Research Center (JRC), Head of Unit ‘Innovation Policies and Economic Impact’

International Experts

  • Ebba Lund – CEO, International Association of Science Parks and Areas of Innovation IASP
  • Prof. Taina Tukiainen – Research Director, Prof. for Sustainability, Corporate Entrepreneurship and Innovation, University of Vaasa, Finland
  • Mieke de Bruin – Community Manager, Utrecht Science Park, The Netherlands
  • Dr Jernej Pintar – CEO & Head of Tech Community at Technology Park Ljubljana, Slovenia
  • Frederik Larsson – Digital Strategist & Communication Manager, Linköping Science Park, Sweden
  • Ferran Huidobro Casamitjana – International Project Manager, Parque TecnoCampus Mataró-Maresme, Spain
  • Steffen Terberl – Head of Business Office „Zukunftsorte“, WISTA Management GmbH, Germany (requested)
  • Dr Justyna Adamska – Deputy Director, Poznan Science and Technology Park, Poland
  • Fabio Morea – Head of Sustainability and Mobility Manager, Area Science Park, Trieste, Italy
  • Markku Markkula – President of the Helsinki Region, Finland & Vice-President of the European Committee of the Regions
  • Moderator: Dr Jukka Viitanen – CEO, Resolute HQ Inc. & leading expert in managing the innovation platforms, Helsinki, Uusimaa, Finland

Planning Your Journey to Potsdam

The conference was a success and is already over but in case you do plan to travel to Potsdam: The Potsdam Science Park is well connected to Berlin Brandenburg Airport BER and Berlin Main Station by direct train link. The commuting is approximately 35 minutes.

Contact

Program
Karen Esser
karen.esser@potsdam-sciencepark.de
+49 (0)331. 237 351 103

Registration & general information
Kathrin Giersch
events@potsdam-sciencepark.de
+49 (0)331. 237 351 103

Organizers

The Potsdam International Forum ist organized by the Brandenburg Ministry of Finance and for European Affairs and Potsdam Science Park, Standortmanagement Golm GmbH. This event is funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the Federal State of Brandenburg.

 

General data protection notice: The data you enter in the online form will be used by Standortmanagement Golm GmbH exclusively for sending information on the organization and handling of the selected event as well as for comparable information offers of the Standortmanagement Golm GmbH/location management of the Potsdam Science Park.

Photos and video recordings: During the event, film and photo recordings will be made, which will be used to document the event and as part of the press and public relations work of Standortmanagement Golm GmbH for the Potsdam Science Park. You can object to this at any time by sending an email to info@potsdam-sciencepark.de. Your data will be treated confidentially. The data protection regulations of Standortmanagement Golm GmbH apply.