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News No 3 • March 2012


5 questions for Mr. Timo Saviniemi, Steering Committee member, Häme

New collaborations to find best practices

SILVER ECONOMY - Finding strategies to match challenges of an ageing population

EFFECT - Sharing innovative wellbeing services

Programme manager corner

Photo Bastien Erpelding


Seven european regions have joined force, in terms of seeing an ageing population as an opportunity to regional economic development. CREATOR mini-programme provides unique opportunities to search for new possibilities by learning from each other and finding solutions together.

Projects in cooperation Within four years CREATOR will implement seven projects with at least three cooperative participants/organisations from three participating regions.

Needs of an ageing population Projects shall concern the possibilities emerging from the needs of an ageing population, for instance innovations, products and services or be related to an increasing cooperation between the private and public sector in producing well being services.

Policy strategies Final results will include recommendations and guidelines to design policy responses to demographic change.

Cooperating regions: Västerbotten Sweden, Häme Finland, Wielkopolska Poland, Lorraine France, Brescia Italy, Asturias Spain, North Hungary, Hungary

A lot has happened since our last newsletter. Seven sub-project are approved and up and running. Some have come half way while others are just starting up. It will certainly be interesting to see all of the sub-projects finalize their ideas and their possible effects. Details on all sub-projects can be found in this issue. CREATOR has also come half-way and we are making arrangements for our mid-term evaluation which will take place in the spring. Sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day work and overlook the objective. Therefore this evaluation is so important, are we on the right track? And while I am confident, by the end of May we will know for sure. Other exciting news is that the Joint Technical Secretariat in Lille has launched an online reporting system and I think all INTERREG IVC projects and mini-programmes are happy to move away from the old excel sheets. The online form allows for partner contribution is a completely different way than the excel-document and I am excited to use it now for the first time. Another thing I am excited about is the 4th workshop in Poznan, which will be an opportunity for sub-projects to test their good practices. Experts and senior citizens will be invited and will have their say. Just like you may get caught up in your day-to-day routine, it’s also easy to forget who these sub-projects are intended to facilitate for, the elderly. I look forward to yet an inspiring workshop. Finally, I want to welcome Elhame Maziz from the regional council of Lorrain back to CREATOR. She has been on sick leave for almost a year we are all happy that she is feeling better and that she is back! With hopes of an inspiring spring,

Nr 3 • mars 2012 Text and layout: Mariann Holmberg Publisher: CREATOR Interreg IVC mini-programme, by the County Administrative Board of Västerbotten

Susanna Lantz Project manager CREATOR


Häme - Economic growth while its population is ageing Häme is a region in southern Finland situated only an hour from the country’s capital, Helsinki. It is a historical region where some of the oldest settlements in Finland are found. The capital of the region, Hämeenlinna, is the oldest inland town in Finland and was founded in 1639. The region has over 174,000 inhabitants and an area of about 5,700 square kilometres. The population has increased during the last ten years and this trend is expected to continue. The population is older compared with the national average. The region (NUTS 3) is itself divided into three sub-regions (NUTS 4) and into 11 municipalities.

the industry and service sectors, largely due to the region’s central location in Finland. Industry in Häme is mainly oriented to the domestic market. The main industries are metal, food and mechanical wood processing. Other significant, developing sectors are tourism, digital business, well being, the culture industry and environmental technology. Most of the enterprises are quite small and the public sector plays an important role as a big employer. The unemployment rate was 9 percent in 2011, roughly the same as the national average. Regional GDP per capita was calculated at € 26,500 in 2009. Häme in CREATOR

During the past couple of years the region experienced strong economic growth, primarily in

Finland was one of the first countries in Europe to be faced with the challenge of an ageing

population. It is very important to confront this and to seek solutions together with other regions of Europe by learning from one other. As the region is not very internationalized at present, CREATOR provides an excellent opportunity for regional actors to become involved in international co-operation. This serves as good preparation for the next EU-programme period, starting from 2014.

5 questions for Mr. Timo Saviniemi, Steering Committee member, Häme • What do you think about the future as a senior in Häme? What is the reality? Although Häme has economic growth, it is an ageing region at present. It is very important to pay attention to the quality of life of elderly people now and in the future. There is going to be a great deal of pressure on decision makers at state, regional and municipal level to organise all the required services for the increasing, ageing population. The emphasis should be increasingly on preventive care and services. I think in the future people will be increasingly responsible for their own health. So things like health-related sports and healthy ways of living are very important for everyone, not only for the senior citizens. • How would you like the young generation to think about their future in Häme? I feel that young people in Häme think positively about their future. It is very important to educate oneself and to have a positive, active and even somewhat curious approach to the future. As we don’t have own university, many young people leave the region to educate themselves elsewhere in Finland or abroad, and I encourage people to do so in the future as well. It is our job in the Regional Council, together with the municipalities, to develop interesting possibilities for working and living in our region in order to attract these young people to come back some day with more experience and competence. • How could CREATOR contribute to positive development in Häme? Our region is not very internationalised if you compare it with the other regions in Finland. Therefore, I see CREATOR as a very useful way of encour-


aging organisations and people to be more active on international platforms. I think CREATOR, as a mini-programme, offers the organisations in our region a shortcut to international development projects. This is a very important aspect when preparing the region and its actors for the next programming period which starts from 2014. Another important aspect is that CREATOR provides possibilities for exchanging and benchmarking practices and models related to the challenges of the ageing population between the seven European regions. This benchmarking and exchanging of good practices can help us in our development work in the region in many ways. At best, it provides us with new ways of thinking and different views on the challenges and especially the solutions. • What are your personal expectations as a future senior? I would like to have a safe, active, healthy life as a senior citizen together with my family, and to see my children grow up. My dream is to retire some day, as being an entrepreneur, retirement is not as obvious as it probably is for other people. • What are the best things about living in Häme? There are many good things in Häme, but I think the best thing is the clean, rich natural countryside environment. In a Finnish dimension, our region has an excellent location. The biggest cities of Finland are only one hour away from our region and with the present good logistic connections we are easily reachable. The region also offers many different possible ways of living in the cities and the rural areas.


ENSURE - A database of senior experts

Ensure wants to take advantage of elderly’s knowledge and expertise and store it in a community website for seniors. Elderly people want to function as active members of society. According to some studies, the maturity generation (people aged 43-63) increasingly feel that they should contribute to social cohesion. Thus, they focus on economic activity, and they also consider other kinds of activity important, whether paid or not, because various unspecified activities can be useful for the individual and society alike. Consequently, the project is operating in the area of emerging businesses; business ideas which provide opportunities for active participation by people in this age group, in harmony with their own needs, in aiding the orientation of company product or service development. This could involve substantial emphasis on the health industry, recreation and IT. It is important that people in this target group, which is increasing, should help the younger generation, actively rather than passively, while retaining their own goals and needs. Aim Our “ENSURE” project is intended to map out, collect, organize and utilize the knowledge, expertise, experience and competence that

are unique for elderly people (aged 55+) who have some decades of work behind them. Our main aim is to establish a database of senior experts that can link to the needs of companies, authorities, training organizations and other stakeholders who wish to use such expertise. We also intend to represent the social and mental needs of the elderly, giving them the opportunity of being more active and beneficial for the younger generation. Results The most important result of the project would be a community web site for seniors, incorporating their professional experience, which can be viewed by companies and other stakeholders, and also provide possibilities of creating social networks and free-time activities. We started our project implementation with a mapping and needs analysis in the participating countries. In parallel with this, a communication plan was prepared together with a promotional kit, because in this project, communication plays a very important role, both in recruiting the target group and in dissemination activities. In all the participating countries, the partners organize interactive forums for stakeholders, and Focus Group meetings with senior experts every three months. The results of the needs analysis and the meetings and forums will help

create a well-structured online database on our website, which will be the core result of the ENSURE project. After data has been collected and the database tested operationally, an international conference will be organized in Hungary to conclude the project. The ENSURE project comprises participants from: North Hungary, Asturias, Brescia, and Wielkopolska.

Leader of the project: Tibor Bodnár, Project Manager Local Enterprise Agency, North-Hungary, +36 36 410 724


SILVER ECONOMY - Finding strategies to match challenges of an ageing population

The increasing proportion of people in the population aged over 50 have new values which define this so-called “new old” generation. It is a recognised social fact that more of them, both in number and relatively, continue to live in their own homes but with limited mobility, dexterity and mental capacity. This has encouraged the search for new products, innovative service and aids for general well-being as a concept to fit the needs of this generation. Background Recent developments in electronics have increased the potential for assistant technology to support people, through the use of sensors, robotic devices and remote control devices. The SILVER ECONOMY project is aimed at developing, promoting and disseminating strategies to match new challenges related to population ageing. These especially comprise technological services for wellbeing and health monitoring, such as robotic assistants, electrical mobility and health sports, including health tourism and green care. In this sense, electrical mobility has become a policy priority in Europe because of the enormous potential environmental benefit (lack of pollution and noise) that it could bring to society. However, the issue of how aged people

could embrace this new green mobility concept in their lives has not yet been resolved.

well being of elderly people, enhancing dignity and quality of life.

Project idea Therefore the cooperating regions are analysing and identifying the various kinds of such technological services that could be used by elderly people or in related services. During this first term we started analysing the main technologies needed and their currently states of development, and looking for commercially available products.

Health and well being have become increasingly significant for attracting new competitive business for regions. Interesting, attractive innovations are often found in the interfaces of different sectors, for example in new combinations of welfare services. In particular, the positive effects of exercise on human performance, motivation and well being are indisputable, as are the extension of working life and prevention of social exclusion.

For example, as regards robots in the home, these are mainly are used for cleaning tasks (vacuum robots), but there are also robots for surveillance, lawn robots and robots used as pets (or electronic friends) to keep their users company.

Plans for 2012 For the next term we will make a sociological study of the needs of elderly people in respect of these technologies and new services, in order to identify requirements that could be of interest to researchers, manufactures and vendors. The Silver Economy project comprises participants from four different regions: Wielkopolska, Häme, North Hungary and Asturias.

We have identified some projects, such as NETCARITY, that propose a new integrated paradigm to support independence and engagement of elderly people living alone at home. The project fosters the development of a light technological infrastructure that can be integrated in the homes of old people at a reduced cost. It would provide basic support for everyday activities, detect crucial health situations, and provide social and psychological engagement aimed at maintaining the emotional

The leader of this sub-project is the region of Asturias: Rebeca López Fundación PRODINTEC +34 984 390 060


RECO - New collaborations to find best practices The aim of the RECO project is to enhance cooperation between public authorities, universities and volunteer associations, and to find best practices for services for elderly people. The cooperating regions will exchange ideas and experience through study visits and workshops in each region. Regional activities 2011 Participants in the RECO project made study visits in Italy and Sweden in 2011. At the meetings we learned from each other, and the participants from the other regions talked about their work with elderly people and shared good examples of this.

quality of life of elderly people. They also organized 13 public lectures. The French participant is planning a major conference with a university in May or June 2012. This will be an opportunity for associations, local institutions and the professional field of “home care people” to meet each other, exchange good practices and discuss solutions. Among other activities in the RECO projects, the participants from Italy have started a diabetes training course which will include physical activity. In Hungary they will make a film on g ood practice, subtitled or narrated, to be uploaded and broadcast on a local community TV channel.

Several of the participating regions started the project by conducting surveys to find out such things as the needs, wishes and expectations of elderly people. In Finland, they conducted a survey of the needs and wishes of elderly people. Nursing students interviewed 21 persons (aged 74-96). One important wish expressed was to have a friend or company. They then arranged events for residents of Myllymäki concerning the wellbeing of elderly people. The participants in Poland and Italy have also conducted research. In Poland, they researched the needs and expectations of people aged 50 and over, particularly in the areas of health,

The Swedish participants have identified several good practices which were presented at a study visit in Umeå in November 2011, one example being an activity centre for elderly people called “Ågläntan” in Sävar. This is a place for elderly people to come and meet, participate in different activities, or just have coffee and talk. They are also planning to start a story-telling course as another objective of the project. Plans for 2012 In 2012, the project participants will visit Poland and Finland for study visits. All good practices will be collated and presented in a document

culture and education, and the level of their participation in social life. The results were analysed and presented in a report. In Italy, an extensive survey was conducted, 732 questionnaires were distributed, 213 of which were then collected door to door. The results will now be analysed and presented. A few of the participants have also planned and conducted meetings and conferences. The participants from Poland organized a meeting with local partners, such as NGOs and public units working on behalf of elderly people in Poznan, as a part of the “Active 50+” fair. 42 local partners participated in working to improve the

which can be distributed in each region in various workshops. We hope that the work we do within RECO can inspire professionals, volunteers and elderly people to come up with new ideas on how to enhance the health and quality of life of elderly people.

The leader of the project: Birgitta Brännvall Sävar kommundel Umeå Kommun +46 90 16 10 00


EFFECT - Sharing innovative wellbeing services The EFFECT (European Efficient Wellbeing Service Production) project has concentrated on developing multi-producer model and customer orientation in wellbeing services for elderly people. The aim of the EFFECT project is to assemble a best-practice tool kit for disseminating good practices and experience from one region to another. The Effect project consists of participants from five regions: Häme, Västerbotten, Lorraine, Asturias and Brescia. Each participant has its own theme: Service procurement, purchase process (Västerbotten, Umeå), Housing, solidarity, countering isolation, information and proximity, mobility and accessibility (Lorraine/Metz), The development of service companies (Asturias/ Oviedo), Supported living at home (Brescia), Enterprise approach (Lorraine) and Cooperation between public, private and third sector (Häme). Each participant has collected at least five best practices in these themes. Site visits have been made in order to transfer best practices inter-regionally. During the site visits, the project was able to share first-hand knowledge of best practices from different regions with the site personel and the targeted elderly. Site visits have also clarified the region’s best practices for the other participants.

A survey of future service needs was performed at the end of last year in the Häme region. The Umeå municipality has worked hard in mapping out processes involved in the procurement of home care services and in quality check-ups of services provided by public and private actors. The Oviedo Chamber of Commerce has been carrying out a specific investigation of services and products, based on elderly people in its

region, by contacting public and private organizations and analyzing reports and statistics.

The leader of the project: Ria Laurila, Häme Development Centre Ltd, ria., +358 50 432 7111

BIO-LIFE - Food for elderly In tandem with the main objectives of the CREATOR project, BIO LIFE aims to exchange information about good practices regarding dietary habits of the ageing population, and to raise awareness with companies and other agents which will play a key role in this by introducing new services and products into the market in order to meet the needs of elderly people. After launching the project in Metz in January 2011, the BIO LIFE project team, which consisted of eight organizations from Sweden, Spain, Poland, Hungary, Finland and France, wasted no time and quickly organized several lines of work. First of all we worked on our internal and external communication. During 2011, we made a website and a collaborative platform on which we can share our results and progress. We also worked on a flyer to explain our approach; this has been translated into every relevant language

for distribution in each region. We will produce a newsletter to explain our progress for the next six months. We have publicised our project and participated in radio broadcasts in Sweden and France, and in a seminar in Finland. We also issued a press release for the regional press. We will organize a symposium at the end of 2012 in collaboration with Region Lorraine, in which we will present our approach and results. At the same time we have being analysing the diet of senior citizens. For this, several courses of action were taken during 2012. On the one hand, a review of the available literature was conducted to establish the regulatory situation and nutrition. Then we studied existing solutions and good practices in each region. Also, we have identified the food companies in each region that can participate in our project. In order to obtain the most comprehensive information on the needs and expectations

of older people, the BIO LIFE project team produced a survey questionnaire on the diet of elderly people in each region to identify difficulties faced by seniors in each region. The questionnaire was compiled by the entire team and distributed during the second half of 2011. The results will be collated and analysed during the first half of 2012. Also, during the second half of 2011, we worked on developing a tool to identify companies in the food industry which have the means and capacity to innovate for the senior citizens’ market. This tool will be tested and finalized, and will be used in each region during 2012.

Leader of the project: Olivier Fabre, Agria Lorraine +33 3 383 44 08 79

SILHOUETTE - Information and Communication Technology for elderly The SILHOUETTE sub-project focuses on the use of ICT technologies to support the activities of elderly people. The project began with the identification of the use, development and piloting of products and services in the area of ICT. This confirmed that ICT has become necessary for social innovation for dealing with the challenges of ageing. SILHOUETTE identified over 50 uses of ICT for the support of elderly people and for making

people of this age group more aware of ICT. The Nordic Regions of H채me and V채sterbotten offered and developed the most advanced solutions. These included smart cooking appliances such as Menumat. Also, user-sensitive systems that support daily activities and social interaction, such as those developed by the Agnes project; these provide opportunities for social innovation and new business opportunities. By contrast, the lack of ICT-based solutions in the regions of North Hungary and Valle Sabbia (the

Brescia sub-region participating in SILHOUETTE) shows that there are opportunities for transferring practices between regions. SILHOUETTE has also surveyed the needs of various stakeholders in supporting the elderly. The needs of the elderly themselves were also surveyed. The results of these surveys, together with the identification of current practices of using ICT for supporting seniors, and existing strategies and policies, will be used to map out existing solutions, products and services in each region, and the need for them. The SILHOUETTE working group has successfully used site visits and good practice workshops in each participating region to better understand how practices are put to use and what the CREATOR regions can do jointly to solve needs that arise. The purpose of the site visits and workshops is to find the strong sides of each region, and to identify possible cooperation paths for a common platform to facilitate the exchange of experience in using ICT for supporting the elderly and transferring solutions, products and services between CREATOR regions. The first site visit was in the Asturias Region in October, with the visit to the Retemancosi-TeleGea initiative. More visits are planned for February and March.

Sub-project manager: Michal Kosiedowski, Poznan Supercomputing and Networking Center +48 61 8582161

Seven European regions have joined their forces, in terms of seeing an ageing population as an opportunity to regional economic development. CREATOR mini-programme provides unique opportunities to search for new possibilities by learning from each other and finding solutions together.

The CREATOR mini-program has been made possible by the INTERREG IVC. Co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund

Newsletter #3  

CREATOR mini-programme newsletter no. 3

Newsletter #3  

CREATOR mini-programme newsletter no. 3