This blog is intended to create cross-relationships among the territories partners of the Next Project (www.project-next.eu). As soon as possible the NEXT IS will substitute the blog.

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NEXT intends to create a collaborative platform to support innovation and technology transfer in the Countries of the Adriatic area. The project is promoted by 11 partners from six countries and the representatives of different interests and positions of the actors of innovation.

Project description

Project background and the problems and/or challenges to be addressed

The NEXT project arises from the considerations on the role of innovation, transnational networks and cooperation as levers of national economic development and, more generally, of the increase in competitive capacity of enterprises through better connections with the innovation circuits. The challenges that the project intends to address are significant and they are based on some issues/perspectives/conditions/opportunities such as: Regarding research and technology transfer:
  • Research and technology transfer development at the level of individual regions/ Countries often leads to too high investments that need to be done on a large scale for determining significant results;
  • In order to maximize the “value for money” of these activities, synergies and networks can be developed to promote joint researches and the connections with the business community in the cooperation area;
  • Sharing the risks with the EU and the capitalization of the benefits at the local level represent a great opportunity to enhance the competitiveness of the area through research and technology transfer;
  • The creation/ availability of a sufficient “critical mass” (skills, resources, actors, etc.) in relevant scientific-technological areas is fundamental to address and support the great challenges in the cooperation area, today and in the future;
  • Cooperation and networking projects such as NEXT can support the adoption of new cultural and operational approaches in the field of research and innovation and consequently the development of new skills and professional opportunities in the regional contexts of the beneficiary Countries.
Regarding cross-border cooperation and the characteristics of the area:
  • In the Balkan Countries and in particular in those of the former Yugoslavia, due to a number of factors (the economic crisis, few investments in the scientific sector in recent years and the absence of a defined and coherent institutional framework) there is a distinct lack of an institutional and well-defined relationship between the scientific and the business world. At the same time there is the difficulty of accessing wider financial resources, especially for those Countries that cannot count on the support provided by the Structural Funds.
  • For these Countries improvement of research and innovation sector is one of the priority, and it is in line with national legislation and EU 2020 Strategy. As to create precise operational models, to identify scientific and technological partners and to build up a framework for the exchange of R&I information and services, to facilitate the access to existing resources and skills at the international level, possibly by means of EU funds provided for such synergistic activities as well;
  • To promote the excellence in the area and increase the institutional capacity in the sector of research and technology transfer, it’s a clear need, aiming at the implementation of local development models more oriented to the “Territorial knowledge management.
  • NEXT should furhter strenghten existed partnership for the joint similar interventions within new IPA 2014-2020.
  • Education, business and science may create new potentials and job opportunities in the Adriatic area.

Project Objectives (general and specific)

Consistent with the objective of Measure 1.1 Research and Innovation to “encourage innovation and technology transfer through the creation of networks between the business, institutional and academic community”, the project aims to create a collaborative platform among Research centers, enterprises and researchers; this platform will work as the “aggregation element” to stimulate and support an innovation path that will enable to increase the competitiveness of the area. General Objectives: Through the collaborative platform, the NEXT project aims: A. To promote, expand and consolidate, in qualitative and quantitative terms, the cooperation among Research institutes, enterprises and researchers. B. To test mechanisms to support the research and technology transfer system in the area. C. To represent a qualified interlocutor with institutional stakeholders in view of an enlarged R&I governance D. To embody a competitive partner in research and technology transfer at the area level and internationally The specific objectives are:
  • To define the map of activities and actors of scientific research in each territory involved;
  • To implement an interactive online platform to facilitate and multiply the exchanges among the actors of innovation; • To provide a range of services to support the relationships among the actors involved;
  • To promote investment opportunities in favor of research and technology transfer;
  • To provide guidelines for the development of coordinated policies to support innovation;
  • To give visibility to excellence in the field of research and innovation;
  • To capitalize the experience and the results gained to give continuity to the collaborative platform.

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