First European cluster accelerator programme launched in Frankfurt

How to take clusters to the next level and drive industry-minded innovation

The first edition of TheCAP, Europe’s new cluster accelerator programme, took place 14-17 October 2019 at Frankfurt’s Provadis School of International Management and Technology. TheCap introduced participants from eleven European countries to practical tools and methods to take their cluster to the next level.

20 cluster managers, practitioners and innovation ecosystem builders in the cleantech sector attended the four-day bootcamp. The key learning from the bootcamp was that meaningful and sustainable change requires bold action.

“Clusters can make a big shift and multiply impact exponentially on what matters for the future of Europe. We can lead change in the implementation of the new European Green Deal and the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals through effective, innovative cluster approaches,” says Bianca Dragomir, who led the TheCAP bootcamp, together with two other European cluster experts.

Dragomir, who is the European Cluster Manager of the Year (2016/2018) and CEO of the AVAESEN cleantech cluster in Spain is behind the ‘Clusters of Change’ concept, which serves as TheCAP’s core motif and is based on her industry insights: “There are now more than 2500 clusters in Europe, which means we have reached a critical mass to matter. However, faced with pressing global challenges we need novel cluster business models, break the ‘conventional wisdom’, act with speed and focus, and scale up fast to become Europe’s drivers of growth globally.”

Having inspired participants to go back to their clusters as leaders of change, with a clear roadmap on how to implement a strategy that addresses typical cluster issues, from member engagement to funding, and commercialising innovation, the bootcamp provided practical tools and methods that each cluster representative could tailor and personalise for their specific needs.

The know-how and insights from the coaches fed directly into the participants’ current realities, be it working on a funding pitch or planning member engagement activities. In this context, moving away from acting as a static network of stakeholders to a living innovation-driven entity that puts industry at its centre and is collaborative, interconnected, as well as working across sectors and disciplines, emerged as a key takeaway for the participants.

“We know from our own involvement with innovation networks that running a cluster is a highly complex job that many people are not necessarily prepared for. With TheCAP, we want to address this training gap, providing cluster managers with practical tools to build ecosystems for systemic change and creating a network of professionals that can support and learn from each other,” says Hannes Utikal, Head of the Center for Industry and Sustainability at Provadis School of International Management and Technology that organised the EIT Climate-KIC funded bootcamp.

Participants particularly benefited from peer-to-peer learning as one of the key workshop elements, alongside the expert input from the coaches, EU cluster experts who provided information on the European smart investment scene for clusters and how to attract foreign investment, as well as cluster best practice presented by cluster managers from across Europe. The next step for TheCAP, which was supported by DG GROW and ECCP, is to build a dedicated cluster manager qualification programme to scale skills and know-how in support of establishing Europe as a global centre of cluster excellence.

 

More information.

Join the Clusters of Change Movement.

 
Location
Germany
Related Focus Area
Urban Transitions
Related Goal
Goal 2: Create green, resilient cities
Articles you may be interested in
In our community
Water scarcity in Southern Europe: Raw materials expert insights
Water scarcity in Southern Europe: Raw materials expert insights
In Detail
Challenge-led system mapping: A knowledge management approach

The challenge-led system mapping approach responds to the need to improve the practitioner’s capacity to move towards system change by providing mechanisms by which...

Challenge-led system mapping: A knowledge management approach
In The News
EIT Climate-KIC is restructuring to deliver systems transformation for climate...

EIT Climate-KIC is restructuring to provide “systems transformation as...

EIT Climate-KIC is restructuring to deliver systems transformation for climate change
In Detail
A Deep Demonstration of Healthy, Clean Cities: Our Position Narrative for In...

Innovation-as-usual, which is typically siloed and focused on ‘supplying’ the market with technology-led solutions, is not going to deliver a just, inclusive world within 1.5-degree of warming from pre-industrial levels. Innovation...

A Deep Demonstration of Healthy, Clean Cities: Our Position Narrative for Integral District Renewal
In our community
Water scarcity in Southern Europe: Food expert insights
Water scarcity in Southern Europe: Food expert insights
In The News
EIT Climate-KIC and partners reassess our values in the ‘new normal’

EIT Climate-KIC, together with Edgeryders, ETH Zurich and IOTA,...

EIT Climate-KIC and partners reassess our values in the ‘new normal’
In our community
Water scarcity in Southern Europe: Climate expert insights
Water scarcity in Southern Europe: Climate expert insights
Opinion
Who’s doing what: A news round-up of selected COVID-19 responses and recovery plans
Felicity Spors Head of International Affairs, EIT Climate-KIC
Who’s doing what: A news round-up of selected COVID-19 responses and recovery plans
In The News
Co-Action carbon capture project opens new field plots

Yesterday, EIT Climate-KIC community member ‘Co-Action,’ a carbon capture...

Co-Action carbon capture project opens new field plots
In Detail
Implications of the COVID-19 pandemic for global sustainable finance: An int...

The UN Environment convened Financial Centres for Sustainability (FC4S) recently published a working paper, supported by EIT Climate-KIC, on the implications of the COVID-19...

Implications of the COVID-19 pandemic for global sustainable finance: An internal framework for response strategies
In Detail
A cartoonathon: Using humour to drive insights

Last week, in an event supported by EIT Climate-KIC, over 150 participants from more than 60 countries took part in a virtual ‘cartoonathon’ to...

A cartoonathon: Using humour to drive insights
In The News
EIT Climate-KIC launches Call for Proposals to support post-COVID-19 green rec...

EIT Climate-KIC’s ‘Extraordinary Post COVID-19 Regeneration Call 2020’ will...

EIT Climate-KIC launches Call for Proposals to support post-COVID-19 green recovery
Opinion
COVID-19 responses and recovery plans—the good news and the bad news
Felicity Spors Head of International Affairs, EIT Climate-KIC
COVID-19 responses and recovery plans—the good news and the bad news
Innovation Spotlight
How to engage citizens in a just transformation process

With climate change, we are facing one of the biggest challenges of our lifetime – one that...

How to engage citizens in a just transformation process
In The News
The European Union has the tools to boost a sustainable recovery from the COVI...

In a statement released today, the Technical Expert Group...

The European Union has the tools to boost a sustainable recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, say TEG experts
In our community
Interview with Thomas O’Neill, Influence Map
Interview with Thomas O’Neill, Influence Map
In our community
The EU’s Coronavirus Response Initiative: An interview with Felicity Spors...
The EU’s Coronavirus Response Initiative: An interview with Felicity Spors, Head of International Affairs Strategy at EIT Climate-KIC
Opinion
Will COVID-19 derail climate finance?
Dominic Hofstetter Director, Capital & Investments, EIT-Climate-KIC
Will COVID-19 derail climate finance?
Opinion
Transformative policies for the climate challenge
Rachael McGuinness Policy Innovation, EIT Climate-KIC
Transformative policies for the climate challenge
In Detail
Exploring frontiers in sustainability: Bringing futures literacy to financia...

As part of EIT Climate-KIC’s Long-termism Deep Demonstration, Riyong Kim, Director of Decision Metrics and Finance at EIT Climate-KIC, has co-authored a new report,...

Exploring frontiers in sustainability: Bringing futures literacy to financial services in Ireland and France
Opinion
Long democracies
Dark Matter
Long democracies
Opinion
Long financing in a volatile world
Dark Matter
Long financing in a volatile world
Opinion
Long welfare
Dark Matter
Long welfare
Opinion
Abstracted to entangled organisation
Dark Matter
Abstracted to entangled organisation
Opinion
Persistent things
Dark Matter
Persistent things
Opinion
Persistent selves
Dark Matter
Persistent selves
Opinion
Futures in long-termism
Dark Matter
Futures in long-termism
In our community
Strengthening community ties and supporting each other through the COVID-19 ...
Strengthening community ties and supporting each other through the COVID-19 crisis
Opinion
The Corona canvas: How to deal with the crisis as a founder
Marc Mogalle & Anje Kluth Business Buddies & EIT Climate-KIC
The Corona canvas: How to deal with the crisis as a founder
In The News
Lilium completes funding round worth over €224 million

EIT Climate-KIC supported Lilium, a Munich-based aviation company developing...

Lilium completes funding round worth over €224 million