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INTERREG IVC North Area Perspective

Better Policies through Interregional Cooperation: European Union European Regional Development Fund

EXPERIENCE AND GOOD PRACTICE FROM NORTH AREA COUNTRIES March 2011


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Interregional cooperation in North area

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Overview of the INTERREG IVC programme

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Priority 1: Innovation and the knowledge economy

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Entrepreneurship & SMEs

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Innovation, research and technology development

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Employment, human capital and education

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Information society

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Implementing the CITIES project – interview with the Lead Partner

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Priority 2: Environment and risk prevention

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Energy and sustainable transport

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Natural and technological risks, climate change

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Cultural heritage and landscapes

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Water management

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Waste prevention and management

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Biodiversity and preservation of natural heritage; air quality

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Implementing INTERREG IVC projects – Four questions to German regional contact points

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INTERREG IVC – building blocks for macro-regional strategies

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Project partners from Information Point North area

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INTERREG IVC national contact points

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“European territorial cooperation gives a real European dimension to Cohesion Policy. In areas ranging from the environment to energy to transport links, it is clear that we need cooperative action. European Territorial Cooperation begins to provide some response to that need. Interregional cooperation in particular is unique in promoting the exchange of experience. In simple terms, it’s about good ideas finding their way through to where the money is. The programme’s emphasis on innovation is important, as this topic is still top of the European agenda. The environment priority is no less significant, as these days there is greater awareness of the need to treat environmental issues on a wider scale. Issues like green technology need more attention, not less. Treating these wide-scale issues is the objective of the macro-region strategies.

The key driving force here is trying to align policy and funding streams to greater effect. Imagine how much more impact the EUR 100 billion of Structural Funds that is allocated to the Danube area would have when treating on a macro-level issues that are relevant to that region. Add to that the good policy practices identified within INTERREG IVC, and we can greatly improve the way those funds are spent. For example, cooperation across the Danube basin on questions of water management is crucial. As a case in point, most of the ground water in Hungary has its source in other countries! I’m sure Hungarian regions will benefit from the SHARP project, dealing with ground water management, one of the projects described in this brochure. Within the Baltic Sea Region strategy, whose territory almost matches the Information Point North area, there is a great demand from the Baltic States and Poland to have more contacts and links with European networks. The opportunity to work with countries that score highly on the Innovation Index and learn from

their good practices is an attractive one. Inversely, those regions seen as ‘innovative’ remain so by constantly exposing themselves to new ideas and practices, thus constantly improving. Programmes such as INTERREG IVC are crucial in facilitating the sharing and transferring good practices from one region to another. Ultimately, thanks to this programme, it is the use of Structural Funds that will improve, providing more efficiency and value-for-money to the European citizen. While not being in a position to predict the future, there is broad support for territorial cooperation to continue. The challenges facing it are recognised, as is the need to ensure that the adapted tools are in place to allow regions to continue benefitting from this most European of programmes.” Colin Wolfe, Head of European Transnational and Interregional Cooperation Unit, DG Regional Policy, European Commission


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regional programmes. The results already achieved only confirm the need to better link European Territorial Cooperation programmes with the Convergence and Competitiveness objectives.

Interregional cooperation in North area Interregional cooperation has developed hand in hand with European integration, providing tools and measures to identify good practice in terms of regional development policy. INTERREG IVC has helped to simplify, unify and streamline the interregional strand of the European Territorial Cooperation objective. Interregional cooperation has become a simple and tangible tool for public authorities. It allows policy-makers to improve the effectiveness of regional policies by building on the accumulated experience of European regions. Interregional cooperation can provide useful building blocks for regional Operational Programmes and macro-regions. INTERREG IVC already helps policy-makers implement the new knowledge in the framework of their

Already 122 INTERREG IVC projects, involving more than 1300 local and regional authorities, offer European Regions their best practices in the fields of innovation and environment. It is our common duty to disseminate these results all over Europe. This publication is a step towards achieving this goal. It presents a number of good practices from project partners in the INTERREG IVC Information Point North area. It highlights the contributions of regions and cities to tackle the common challenges the European Union is facing. The brochure gives an overview of projects that are currently being implemented in the Information Point North area. It also identifies experiences and solutions that can be further developed and transferred into other regions. On the following pages you will find more information about the INTERREG IVC programme and an overview of projects in the two programme priorities: innovation and the knowledge economy as well as

environment and risk prevention. Interviews with project lead partners provide insight into their experience of implementing INTERREG IVC projects. As Information Point North area overlaps to a certain extent with the Baltic Sea macro-region area, it would be amiss not to also briefly describe the synergies between INTERREG IVC and the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region. A table of projects at the end of the brochure lists projects by sub-theme and includes project website addresses for further information. It also helps to identify projects with partners from specific Information Point North area countries. Finally, contact details of relevant programme bodies and national contact points are presented on the back cover. We would like to thank all project partners who have kindly provided their input to this publication. We hope that this brochure will provide an interesting overview of INTERREG IVC projects implemented in Northern Europe and Germany and will inspire new initiatives at the regional and local level.

Michel Lamblin, INTERREG IVC Programme Director


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Overview of the INTERREG IVC programme INTERREG IVC provides funding for interregional cooperation across Europe. The programme is implemented under the European Community’s territorial cooperation objective and financed through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). The period for INTERREG IVC lasts from 2007-2013. 200

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Objectives

Funding

Partners from Information Point North area

The overall objective of the INTERREG IVC programme is to improve the effectiveness of regional policies and instruments. Each project builds on the exchange of experience among partners who are ideally responsible for the development of their local and regional policies.

A total of €302 million of ERDF funding is available for projects along with €2.7 million Norwegian national co-financing. Depending on their country, partners from the European Union can receive up to 75% or 85% of ERDF co-financing. Partners from Norway can receive up to 50% Norwegian national co-funding.

After three calls, a total of 266 partners from Germany, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Denmark, Latvia, Lithuania, and Norway are involved in INTERREG IVC projects. 31 of them have taken the role of a project Lead Partner. More than half of the partners represent public authorities at the regional, local and national level. Others constitute bodies governed by public law – regional development agencies, universities, institutes, science parks, business support agencies, public companies, etc.

INTERREG IVC is linked to the objectives of Lisbon and Gothenburg agendas. The projects deal with topics related to innovation and the knowledge economy as well as environment and risk prevention. The main activities of INTERREG IVC projects are related to the identification, analysis, dissemination and, under certain conditions, transfer of good practices related to regional development policies.

As of 24 January 2011, after three calls for proposals about two-thirds of the funds available have already been allocated. A total of €202.1 million of ERDF funding has been allocated to 122 projects involving 1333 partners. In addition, €1 million of Norwegian national co-funding has been allocated to finance the activities of Norwegian partners.

Information Point (IP) North area countries are known for their advanced development in the fields of innovation, entrepreneurship, ICT, and employment. They top both the ICT Development Index 1 and the Global Gender Gap index. Besides, according to the EU Regional Competitiveness Index 20102 Denmark, Finland, Sweden and Germany are among the ten most competitive countries in the EU. This is also reflected in the popularity of the priority ’innovation and the knowledge economy’ – almost two-thirds of all Information Point North area partners are cooperating in this field.

100 Number of approved partners Number of approved partners: North area countries 50

*Please refer to Article 1§9 of Directive 2004/18/EC for a definition of “bodies governed by public law”.

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TABLE 2: INTERREG IVC partners from IP North area by legal status

TABLE 3: INTERREG IVC partners from IP North area countries by priority

IT ES UK EL FR DE PL SE RO HU NL FI BG PT BE SI AT CZ IE SK EE LT DK LV CY NO MT CH LU other

TABLE 1: INTERREG IVC project partners by country

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http://www.itu.int/ITU-D/ict/publications/idi/2010/index.html

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http://easu.jrc.ec.europa.eu/eas/downloads/pdf/JRC58169.pdf


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A number of Northern partners also work with the sub-theme ’energy and sustainable transport’ along with other themes within the priority ‘environment and risk prevention’. After three calls for proposals, their participation is the lowest in the sub-themes ’biodiversity and preservation of natural heritage; air quality’ and ’waste prevention and management’.

Why take part? Some ideas from INTERREG IVC project partners: “INTERREG IVC offers a possibility to cooperate with regions from all over Europe and not only in a limited cooperation area.” Lead Partner of DART

Most of the projects have duration of three years. The average ERDF budget of an IP North area partner for this period amounts to €154,300. The average EU partner’s own contribution is €47,700, whereas for Norwegian partners the average own contribution is €89,900.

“INTERREG IVC allows regions to develop solutions to problems arising at the European level. The programme offers a possibility to develop strategies and visions by sharing experiences between different regions and developing solutions that can be implemented in all regions. The projects also increase the strategic competence of the participants.” Lead Partner of PORT INTEGRATION TABLE 4: INTERREG IVC partners from IP North area countries by sub-themes

“INTERREG IVC brings regions and people together thus facilitating the exchange of good practice between more experienced regions and less experienced regions. Sharing ideas and cooperating across borders is one of the most important factors contributing to innovation, which is seen as a main contributor to achieving

sustainable development and low-carbon economies.” Lead Partner of B2N “INTERREG IVC projects contribute to the enlargement of international contacts.” Partner of Euroscapes “INTERREG IVC provides an opportunity to access the knowledge of more experienced regions and learn from them. Presenting your own region in the context of another country helps to understand home-made principles better. Second, you gain new insights as specialists and politicians from other countries deal with similar problems. You can compare the way they do it and sometimes find solutions that fit excellent to your own problems.” Lead Partner of FUTUREforest “INTERREG IVC offers a good possibility to strengthen staff know-how concerning international cooperation, knowledge of languages, cultures and other EU countries.” Partner of NEEBOR

To learn more about the programme and its running projects, visit the INTERREG IVC website and its approved projects database at www.interreg4c.eu. More information can also be obtained from the INTERREG IVC Joint Technical Secretariat and the four Information Points. The programme contacts are listed on this brochure’s back cover. Most of the countries participating in the programme have set up national contact points. For additional countryspecific information, please refer to the list of national contacts on the inside of this brochure’s back cover. A full list of national contact points is available on the programme website.


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Priority 1: Innovation and the knowledge economy Entrepreneurship & SMEs Small and medium-sized enterprises are the main source of growth, innovation, employment and social integration. SMEs represent 99% of all European business, creating about 70% of all jobs and GDP. Nevertheless, the entrepreneurial climate in Europe is perceived to be unfavourable. Common action is needed to reduce

administrative burdens and increase the entrepreneurial spirit. Besides, Europe needs to make full use of its labour potential to face challenges related to an ageing population and rising global competition. Altogether 58 partners from the Information Point North area deal with the above-mentioned issues.


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Promoting the entrepreneurial mindset The paradox between good conditions for entrepreneurship but poor desire to become an entrepreneur is an issue tackled by the ENSPIRE EU project. The project has three target groups: the disadvantaged – people without the same opportunities as the same average European; the disconnected – people who are disconnected from the labour market (long-term unemployed, people with a low education level); and the discouraged – young people at secondary level of education discouraged by the education system. In addition to training courses for disadvantaged groups, the partners develop an entrepreneurship support toolkit for business support agencies and other stakeholders, along with policy recommendations for creating more European entrepreneurs.

Ethnic coaches for ethnic entrepreneurs in Vejle, Denmark Promoting entrepreneurship and offering guidance on developing businesses is an important route to employment and integration of immigrants. ‘Ethnic coach for ethnic entrepreneurs’ is one of the ENSPIRE EU good practices from Vejle Business Development Agency, Denmark. The ethnic coaching project in Vejle identifies role models and persuading immigrants to use business services available in Denmark. 45 guidance sessions with individual coaching by a consultant from an ethnic group have already led to 24 ethnic entrepreneurs starting independent businesses.

Approaching the same problem but having the educational system in focus is the YES project. This partnership wishes to increase the number of entrepreneurs by developing youth entrepreneurship strategies and improving regional education policies. The partners can learn from the Finnish experience where specific services are offered to young entrepreneurs, or from Estonia where a third of all schools have included a locally developed entrepreneurship programme in their curricula and a student company programme has become very popular.

Better support to businesses The reduction of administrative and regulatory burden is a top priority for the European Commission. Actions simplifying procedures, introducing new support measures as well as facilitating networking between different parties should be especially stimulated. The partners involved in the ENTREDI project focus on regional networks, supporting potential and young entrepreneurs in overcoming the initial hurdles of launching their businesses. As a result of this project, all participating regions will have an action plan to improve regional entrepreneurship support.

Profiling start-up businesses in Frankfurt, Germany One of the ENTREDI good practice examples is the Kompass profiling tool from Frankfurt am Main, Germany. The leading idea of this tool is that not all start-ups can be carried out in the way the first draft had foreseen. The tool helps to select the best ideas and suggests when more preparation, coaching and guidance are needed. This profiling tool has allowed Kompass to improve success prospects of business start-ups. Out of all the enterprises set up in Germany, three years after entering the market only 30-50% survive. However, with the help of the profiling tool, almost three-quarters of the entrepreneurs supported with a startup seminar and a market testing phase have entered self-employment and have remained in it.

ICHNOS PLUS partners work together to make it easier for entrepreneurs to start their businesses. Each partner developed regional action plans that establish points of single contact for business support called OneStop-Shops. Such an arrangement allows obtaining all information and completing all necessary procedures by accessing only one point of contact. For example, entrepreneurs are able to leave the One-Stop-Shop with all the necessary permissions to run their business immediately. In Tartu, Estonia, such a regional contact point for entrepreneurs was set up electronically at http://ettevotlus. tartu.ee.


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The NEEBOR project fosters innovation and develops cross-border business cooperation in external border regions. The partnership consists of ten regions at the EU’s eastern border who wish to jointly overcome the similar challenges SMEs face in their regions. The project focuses on three issues: development of partnerships and clusters, access to finance and improved knowledge of SMEs.

Sustainable energy solutions from Finland North Karelia, Finland has significant forest resources and expertise in forestrelated activities. One of the good practices that this region is sharing with other NEEBOR partners is the Wenet project, established in 2004. Wenet (www.wenet.fi) promotes networking of companies, research institutions and training organisations to internationalise regional expertise in wood energy production and sustainable use of local fuel resources. Today the network covers the entire eastern Finland. Although the good practices and study visits deal with the specific issues of external border regions, many good practices, including Wenet, could be very useful for and transferable to other remote or rural regions in Europe.

Public procurement represents a huge market estimated at over 16% of the GDP of Europe’s 27 Member States. Yet SMEs are not taking full advantage of these opportunities. Business Link Central Denmark is one of the EuroPROC partners, cooperating to unlock the growth and innovation potential of SMEs for a positive impact on the European economy. SMEs are also granted public funds for regional development. The partners of OSAIS, among them the Bautzen Innovation Centre from Germany, identify and exchange good practice on the financial assistance to SMEs through state aid. In addition, they analyse the impact and effectiveness of the subsidies. Also looking at efficient public spending, IMAGEEN partners develop business support methodologies and improve local policies. With the participation of the City of Munich, Germany, and Business Region Göteborg AB, Sweden, an entrepreneurship management guide is developed to describe good practice and transfer opportunities as well as to give policy recommendations.

Clustering of companies and research and development organisations is acknowledged as an effective tool for regional development. Three INTERREG IVC projects work in the field of cluster policies. CLUSNET improves the effectiveness of cluster support policies in larger European city-regions. Among others, the partnership is learning from the good practices from Finland and Sweden. Pooling4Clusters improves services provided by development agencies to boost the efficiency of cluster initiatives. The CASTLE project focuses on a specific cluster - SME logistics. This partnership addresses networking and policies related to SME logistics, decreasing the divide between transport effectiveness and environmental protection.

Creative industries Creative and cultural industries are among the most important growth sectors in the European economy in terms of GDP and added-value. In addition to creating important economic activities

and development, they play a crucial role in attracting investment, encouraging creative talents and developing tourism in the region. With a background of turning a former tobacco factory into a public space for SMEs of the creative sector, two organizations from Klaipeda, Lithuania initiated the CITIES project. Led by Klaipeda City Municipality Administration and supported by Klaipeda Economic Development Agency, this project addresses the promotion and support of creative and cultural industries. The partners have their main attention on revitalising abandoned, regressive and traditional city zones. In addition, the project promotes the re-conversion of traditional sectors into more knowledgeintensive sectors. One of the main outputs to be shared with other European regions is a good practice guide for the creative sector. This guide describes the local and regional development practices of the partners – projects, software, techniques, methodologies and processes.

“SVYTURYS” DOCK OF ARTS in Klaipeda, Lithuania Within the framework of the CITIES project, Klaipeda is sharing a good practice based on a public-private partnership, which shows that it is possible to revitalise retrogressive spaces with minimum investment. As a result of the collaboration of business, creative and public sector, a new cultural space named “Švyturio menų dokas’ (“Svyturys” Dock of Arts) was formed in Klaipeda City, beside Dane river and the harbour territory of the future real estate project Memel City. The “Svyturys” Dock of Arts is an open industrial space in Klaipeda, specially tailored for cultural activities: music, theatre, cinema, dance, fashion, festivals and conferences, educational and interdisciplinary projects. The “Svyturys” Dock of Arts gives additional value and a new quality to Klaipeda city image by creating a specific and lively year-round attraction centre in the old town. To look inside the “Svyturys” Dock of Arts, visit www.dokas.info.


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The partners involved in the CREA.RE project make full use of the creative sector in the framework of EU regional policy. Contributing to the local and regional competitiveness and innovation in Europe, the partnership focuses on regional urban centres and rural regions. Creative Growth partners came together to share and further develop business support solutions tailor-made for the creative sector. For example, the Danish partner region of Vejle contributes to the project by sharing their work on incubators (www.spinderihallerne.dk). Furthermore, the project raises awareness about the potential of the creative sector as a business sector among policymakers and business support actors. In addition to more effective policies and services, the partners develop a model for mapping the sector based on a joint set of standards. Similarly to Creative Growth, the Creative Metropoles project increases the understanding of decision-makers of creative industries and supports the creative sector. Creative Metropoles gathers cities that wish to better organise and position their support for the creative economy. This partnership includes several metropolitan areas that are experienced

in the field (Helsinki, Berlin, Stockholm, Oslo) as well as bigger cities who have only recently started to turn more attention to creative industries (Riga, Vilnius, Tallinn).

Creative industries “taking off” in Riga, Latvia Creative Metropoles offers a good example of institutional support for creative business start-up. This is Riga’s support scheme for new businesses – the grant programme ‘Take off’. This relatively new programme can also be used as a funding resource by the creative industries. The programme supports newly established innovative city businesses and offers financial support by covering up to 75% of expenses, such as specific hardware and licences, accounting and legal services, seminars to improve qualifications, development of company websites, etc. The programme is implemented by Riga City Council Entrepreneurship Coordination Centre in cooperation with a commercial bank.

The partners involved in ORGANZA also seek to create synergies between creativity and industry. However, their attention is on medium-sized regions and cities that have incomplete production structures and face losing creative talent to larger cities. The SEE project creates a link between innovation, entrepreneurship and design. The partners exchange on strategies and design support programmes that support innovative products and services. Gathering experts, practitioners and policy makers, this project raises awareness of design and creates a forum for developing related policies and strategies. The partnership includes countries that have already successfully implemented design policies (in particular Finland) as well as regions willing to learn from other partners’ experience. The project website at www.seeproject. org includes policy booklets with recommendations for implementing design support measures and case studies about how these measures have been put into practice.

Disadvantaged areas and social groups Developing a design policy in Estonia Ruth-Helene Melioranski, Director of the Estonian Design Centre The SEE project has played an important role in raising awareness about design among the policy-makers in Estonia. Since the representatives of the Estonian Design Centre and the Estonian Ministry of Economics and Communication took part in SEE workshops, the process of developing a new policy action plan has been much more focused. Project workshops have been very useful in presenting and analysing different design policy measures and aspects. Case studies have also provided valuable input to the preparation phase of the new policy. On a more practical note, we value highly the competence and experience of the SEE partners and especially of the Centre for Design Innovation from Ireland. We are at the moment importing a service pack from the Irish partners, which will allow us to better consult Estonian design companies.

European countries often face the challenge of balancing the need for stimulating economic development a g a i n s t t h e n e e d t o p re s e r v e outstanding natural areas. The B2N project looks into how different regions deal with entrepreneurship in rural and natural areas. Exchanging good practice on networking models and tourism products, the project develops a model policy framework to support SME development in vulnerable natural areas. For Östergötland County Administrative Board, Sweden, this project gives valuable input to the sustainable use of naturally valuable areas in the region, especially regarding responsible land management and nature-culture tourism. Wood and forests play a vital role in supporting and maintaining the economy of local communities, rural areas and mountainous territories. The RobinWood PLUS project promotes participatory forest planning and entrepreneurship in rural areas,

whereas RURALAND and PROSPECTS focus on the economic diversification of rural areas. T h e I C E R p ro j e c t i n c re a s e s t h e attractiveness of rural areas by advancing the tourism sector. This partnership includes City of Lahti, Finland, which is experienced in sustainable development counselling through public-private partnerships and has successfully rehabilitated natural systems, such as waterways, to improve their value as recreational sites. With the Adult Education Centre of the City of Hannover, Germany, as a partner, PASE looks at specific social groups in relation to entrepreneurship. This project supports social entrepreneurship as an asset for local economic development and territorial competitiveness.


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Innovation, research and technology development Europe’s potential for future economic development is directly linked to its ability to create and promote high-value, innovative and research-based economic sectors that are capable of competing with the best in the world. However, many European regions lack critical mass to succeed in the field of innovation, research and technology development. In total 51 partners from the IP North area are working together to perform better in this field.

Reinforcing the role of regional stakeholders The interactive cooperation model of government, universities and industry is essential to innovation in knowledgebased societies. The CLIQ project is taking this triple helix concept to a new level, adding a fourth component – civil society. Exploring this quadruple helix concept, the partnership supports innovation in medium-sized cities with populations between 50,000 and 250,000 through exchange of experience, for instance, of using citizens’ ideas to create regional innovations.

User-driven development in the City of Mikkeli, Finland The City of Mikkeli, a partner in the CLIQ project, has adopted user-driven development as one of the main policies in its urban strategy. In practice, this means the involvement and inclusion of clients and users in developing the city and its public services. Together with businesses, universities and citizens, the city administration has organised a number of public meetings and set up forums, based on themes such as ‘My Mikkeli in 2029’, ‘Family care’ and ‘Mikkeli the Country-town’, all backed up by a web portal www.minunmikkelini.fi.

Supporting knowledge exchange, the partners involved in INNOPOLIS enhance cooperation between universities and enterprises. The project gathers university city-regions: localities with at least three multi-departmental universities and at least 60,000 students. Including Aalto University Foundation and City of Helsinki from Finland, the partnership explores the ability of regional and local authorities to support universities in enhancing innovation.

Europe’s enormous potential to build on the complementary strengths of different regions is the starting point of the EURIS mini-programme. Its partner regions work together on collaborative policy environments and contribute to the opening up of EU regional innovation ecosystems. By supporting cooperative and open innovation, the project also helps to construct the European Research Area. Stuttgart Region Economic Development Corporation, Germany, contributes to this project with their experience in open innovation activities, such as regional competence centres and initiatives for supporting start-up companies. The innovation capacity of regions often depends on the performance of innovation intermediaries. With the Ministry of Economy and Labour SaxonyAnhalt, Germany as a lead partner and the State Regional Development Agency in Latvia as a partner, this is what the IPP project builds on. The partnership improves access strategies for innovation intermediaries. The project increases the outward-orientation of local and regional innovation centres, business parks and innovation policy officers in the participating regions.

Know-Man partners work on the problem of limited financial and personnel resources of SMEs and technology parks to better link the academic, economic, and public sector. The partnership is dedicated to improving the access of technology parks and innovative start-up SMEs to regional and global knowledge networks. The participating regions share solutions to integrating knowledge networks of

businesses, academia and the public sector. Their good practices support the start-up phase of innovative SMEs, focusing on human capital development, social aspects, networking and decisionmaking. As a result, the partners improve knowledge network management policy instruments and accelerate bringing new and innovative ideas to the market.

Atlases for identifying knowledge networks Each region within the Know-Man partnership develops a knowledge atlas. The knowledge atlases help innovative start-up SMEs to visualise regional locations of knowledge-transferring organisations and actors within the academic-economic-public triangle. These graphic maps of all relevant actors also include a description of each particular knowledge location. The atlases help to lead entrepreneurs through the thick institutional framework and reduce obstacles to approach other actors. In addition, they help innovative SMEs to easily identify and access knowledge carries located in the same region. As the atlases work in different regional contexts, they are easily transferable to other regions. They can be used to promote a specific region or to compare development instruments in different regions.


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Strengthening the innovation value chain A number of projects have the common interest to reinforce regional innovation systems and improve regional action plans. The objective of SCINNOPOLI is to develop and apply an impact assessment system for regional innovation policy. Partner regions of the DISTRICT+ miniprogramme all have a similar background – they all face the need of restructuring from a traditional manufacturing industry. Therefore, they have set up a miniprogramme to move towards a new model of development based on knowledge and innovation. Within the scope of the PERIA project, the partners enrich and develop the services offered by their regional innovation organisations. The motivation of these partners is to foster networking among regional innovation agencies and regional authorities. Excellent research does not always find its way into commercially valuable innovations. Indeed, excellent ideas of universities, researchers, companies and inventors are often not turned into innovative services and products. With this in mind, the MKW partners have

come together to work on the final stage of innovation – the take-up of innovative ideas and knowledge. The partnership bridges this gap by transferring good practice to improve the innovation capacity of regions. Partner organisations from Germany, Finland, Sweden and Denmark contribute to the pool of good practice with activities that pick up and valorise unused ideas and patents from universities or larger companies as well as improve the availability of seed capital.

SMEs supporting innovation Respecting the special role of SMEs in delivering growth and new jobs in Europe, a number of projects deal with SMEs and innovation. Promoting entrepreneurship and providing infrastructure for innovation is the topic of MINI EUROPE. The partners of this project exchange and develop regional policies in SME development. In particular, the partnership addresses the involvement of under-represented groups such as women and the disabled. The partners exchange experience on regional infrastructures to support regional entrepreneurs, looking at the set-up of financial instruments, information, services and networking.

Promoting entrepreneurship in Västernorrland, Sweden Within MINI EUROPE, the County of Västernorrland shares their good practice of creating mini-companies for the development of entrepreneurial attitudes and skills. ‘Summer entrepreneur’ started in 1999 and targets young people between 14 and 19 years of age. The programme is about young people stimulating their entrepreneurial skills and creating their own ‘summer jobs’. 50 young students created their own summer jobs as micro entrepreneurs in 2002-2005. Today, it runs in more than 40 municipalities with 600-700 participants each year. The Province of Flevoland (NL) and Tameside (UK) have both adopted this practice, adapting it to their needs. Tameside are working on an accreditation system, which Västernorrland are interested in using too.

Upgrading the innovation capacity of SMEs is the goal of both ERMIS and ERIK ACTION. The ERMIS partners exchange knowledge and experience of what makes local innovation systems effective. The partner regions, including Nordsjælland, Denmark, have faced tremendous social and economic transformation over the last two decades. As SMEs are a main part of their economic set-up, the partners are set out to achieve growth by improving the innovation capacity of SMEs. ERIK ACTION partners improve the effectiveness of regional development policies in the fields of innovation and the knowledge economy. The focus of this Capitalisation project is on services addressing innovation strategies, knowledge management, innovation finance, human resource management and an innovation-friendly environment. Two partnerships have the marketing of innovative ideas as their main interest. The SMART+ project supports innovation in small businesses. The partnership fosters the participation of SMEs in networks and clusters and develops strategies for the marketing of innovative ideas. The RAPIDE project stimulates innovation by helping businesses to bring innovative products and services to the market more

quickly. The critical factors in focus are managing risks, financing innovation, and effective partnerships. Good practices include ‘Innovation Vouchers’ to finance the innovation development of regional SMEs, ‘Business Angel’ networks to assist start-ups, and start-up assessment. This Capitalisation project includes partners from Finland, Germany, Sweden and Estonia. Innovation activities are usually targeted at a limited number of firms, typically concentrated in specific geographical areas. This is the main topic of the INOLINK project that helps to improve the reach of regional innovation policies in peripheral and backward areas. The partners exchange on setting up and maintaining public structures and networks that support regional innovation systems. The Edge Cities Network brings together cities on the edge of European capitals and is implementing the INNOHUBS project. The partners support and promote local entrepreneurship and innovative SMEs. In the course of the project, the partnership develops a roadmap for politicians as well as a good practice guide for European public authorities.


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21 Innovation in specific sectors Several INTERREG IVC partnerships are formed to deal with innovation in a specific sector. These projects are looking at ways of developing market intelligence and promoting university-enterprise cooperation. Eco-innovation is in the focus of two projects. The FRESH project addresses sustainable value creation at regional level. The partnership, led by Kainuun Etu, Finland, works with the technological and social aspects of ecodesign and ecoinnovation with a special interest in the sustainable construction sector. Their good practices cover comprehensive ecodesign applications, ecodesign assessment, regional partnerships and funding mechanisms, regional innovation strategies, and sustainable innovation. The main objective of ECREIN+ is to support eco-innovation and ecobusinesses. During three years, the partners exchange on innovative financial instruments and create a set of indicators to assess instruments for eco-innovation. Innovation can also benefit the health sector. Partner regions of the I4W miniprogramme stimulate innovation in the field of health and safety by exchanging welfare-related innovative solutions.

E-health in Estonia One of the I4W good practices comes from Estonia, where a national e-health programme has been set up using the national ID card. The main applications include digitally stored health stories and registration data, digital receipts, and an archive for large data files of analysis results. For the patient, this ensures that all the information is preserved and accessible to doctors, regardless of where or which doctor the patient visits. At the same time, doctors get a more complete and up-to-date overview of the patient’s health history, previous visits, prescriptions, analysis results, etc. Another good practice is the Estonian Genome Project that provides a research infrastructure for studies concerning causes and mechanisms of complex diseases. With more than 50,000 participating gene donors, it is one of the strongest population based bio-banks in Europe covering about 4% of the adult population.

The ChemClust partners improve regional development policies in the area of innovation and cluster policies, with their main attention on the chemical sector. This project also contributes to the transition of regions from traditional industries (bulk chemicals) towards new businesses (new materials, biotechnology, etc.). The ten partners, three of them from Germany, support entrepreneurship and the development of new businesses in the chemical sector. A particular focus is put on new products and processes that are highly knowledge-based and innovative. The partners involved in Nano4m improve strategies and build networks to design nanotechnology for the market. In a partnership of 12, partner organisations from Dortmund and MĂźnster tackle challenges related to the functioning

o f re g i o n a l i n n o v a t i o n s y s t e m s : shortening the gap between research and development and market testing as well as strengthening interregional collaboration in the emerging field of nano- and microtechnology. The automotive industry is in the focus of the PROSESC project. This project is led by the Stuttgart Region Economic Development Corporation, Germany. It improves policies on environmental sustainability and competitiveness of road transport by supporting the knowledge-intensive producer services sector. The project also leads to a better understanding of the innovation dynamics of the road transport sector. The partners analyse producer services, identify and exchange good practices and seek policy improvement.


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Employment, human capital and people often leave to bigger towns and cities for education and employment. In education Negative demographic trends are considered one of the biggest challenges Europe is facing today. By 2030 about 50% of European regions will face a decrease in population and every third person in the EU will be more than 60 years old. This has been acknowledged as a future development challenge also in the Scandinavian countries. Low fertility rates combined with migration cause the population to decline. In the Information Point North area, this mainly applies to the eastern areas of Germany and the new Member States. The changes are particularly evident in rural areas, where

total 33 partners from the IP North area are involved in projects dealing with these challenges.

Ageing society and depopulation Tackling the problem of depopulation in rural areas, PADIMA partners focus on mountainous areas where living conditions are extreme and where remoteness might lead to isolation. This problem is also known for the two very sparsely populated Norwegian counties in this partnership – Buskerud and Hedmark. With the aim to increase population in mountainous areas, the partnership looks at education

and training, territorial marketing and economic diversification. The strategy of the DART project combines education and lifelong learning, health care and social services as well as traditional and innovative economy. The partners share innovative policy solutions to maintain quality of life and social inclusion for all generations. In addition, the project develops common indicators to measure demographic change in European regions, taking into account the specific problems of shrinking regions. The topics covered by the partnership range from services for the elderly to citizen participation and from infrastructure standards to e-learning.

Handing over handicraft enterprises in Brandenburg, Germany One of the DART good practices from Brandenburg, Germany looks at the management of handicraft enterprises. In the next 5-10 years more than 3,000 handicraft enterprises will face a generation change. The objective is to provide additional training to young and skilled craftsmen so that they could take over handicraft enterprises. This would give them a chance to advance their entrepreneurial career while working and living in their home region. More than 60 young people have already been trained in Brandenburg and this good practice is now shared with other DART partners. In turn, Brandenburg region collects ideas for revising their strategy for dealing with demographic change and improving public services in their shrinking regions.


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As the needs of the elderly have changed, public and private services for seniors need to be rethought. Creative regional policies addressing economic development opportunities related to aging societies - this is the ambitious aim of the CREATOR mini-programme. It looks at economic development opportunities that emerge from the new needs of the further ageing regional populations. The Northern partners in this partnership – Västerbotten, Sweden and Häme, Finland already possess an innovative economic sector and a developed service provision system, providing examples to other partners. In the end, the partnership expects to gain further experience in diversifying the regional-level care and well-being sector as well as in stimulating SMEs to develop better products and services. Having many regional public authorities involved in the partnership provides an excellent opportunity to use the results of this mini-programme in future regional development plans and strategies. To raise the awareness of regional decision-makers, the partners

issue a political manifesto. In addition, the project develops a guidebook on technical recommendations and good practice examples to help administrators implement the good practices within the partner regions and elsewhere.

Supporting vulnerable social groups Elderly people are becoming a more important and outstanding group in our daily life, with great knowledge available for transfer to younger generations. In the light of these challenges it is important, both at EU and national level, to review and adapt existing policies and practices. ESF6 CIA partners enable all participating regions to adopt and adapt innovative approaches for the management of demographic change. This has resulted in eight action plans, describing the existing situation as well as short and long term measures to combat the challenges. Many of the designed measures are derived from the positive experience of completed European Social Fund Article 6 operations in other partner regions.

Facing demographic change in Leipzig, Germany Silvana Rückert, Aufbauwerk Region Leipzig GmbH “In Saxony, authorities and labour market stakeholders have become increasingly aware of the challenges imposed by demographic change. Yet, their readiness to adopt actions diminished when the global economic and financial crisis forced them to address other problems first. Through ESF6 CIA, we nevertheless managed to improve existing measures and create new instruments based on transferred approaches from the partner regions. We have included good practices from other regions to the Action Plan of Saxony’s Regional Employment Strategy. One of these is FIT4WORK from Abruzzo, Italy, which combines awareness-raising and tools to assist SMEs impacted by demographic change. FIT4WORK convinces businesses and employees to voluntarily remain active in the labour market beyond the age of 50. Other good practices include measures regarding female employment from Western Greece and advising SMEs to adapt better to the demographic change, successfully implemented in Flanders, Belgium.”

European countries are turning more and more attention to gender mainstreaming – assessing the implications of all policy actions for women and men. Gender equality is still an issue in many of the newer Member States. According to the World Economic Forum’s Gender Gap Report 2010, Lithuania ranks 35 and Estonia 48 in the world; both have dropped in relation to the 2009 data.3 In comparison the Nordic countries Norway (2), Finland (3) and Sweden (4) continue to demonstrate the greatest equality between men and women. The Gender4Growth project tackles economic growth and related policies with consideration to gender issues. The partners look at economic gender inequalities, in particular lower female employment rates, wages and positions, job market segmentation, and lack of conciliation between career and family life. The partnership includes Lidköping Municipality, Sweden.

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WINNET 8 contributes to regional growth by promoting women in entrepreneurship, i n n o v a t i o n a n d t e c h n o l o g y. T h e partnership, led by Municipality of Älvdalen, Sweden, exchanges experience on how to counteract the concentration of women in certain sectors of the economy. Further good practices are related to helping socially excluded women and raising awareness on gender mainstreaming in public authorities. For example, the Regional Development Council of Gävleborg, Sweden, shares their experience in educating public officials on incorporating gender equality into their ordinary work. The partners have an ambitious aim to collect a total of 100 good practices by the end of the project and to include the most relevant ones into their regional Operational Programmes.

Women Resource Centres in Dalarna, Sweden W7 Dalarna is a WINNET 8 good practice from the Regional Resource Centre for Women in Dalarna. Women Resource Centres help women to mobilise their own resources and empower them to take responsibility for their life and work. Local resource centres are established in each municipality working with entrepreneurship, gender equality and integration issues. The centres provide free and personal business advice and support to enhance entrepreneurship and self-employment. During 2006-2008, a total of 3,468 people received advice from the resource centres. The evening business courses proved to be very popular, attended by 317 persons. As a result, 289 new companies were set-up, of which 138 were established by women and 18 by immigrants. The success of the Women Resource Centres mainly lies in the excellent local and regional network that uses the experience of those already running their own businesses and provides the necessary support for setting up new businesses.


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Employment and human capital One of the strategic employment targets of the EU’s growth strategy for the coming decade – Europe 2020 – is that 75% of the population aged 20-64 should be employed by the year 2020. According to data from 2009, most of the IP North area countries exceed the EU-27 average employment rate of 64.6%. However, the three Baltic countries still fall slightly below the EU-27 average and only Denmark and Norway meet the Europe 2020 target. In order to reach the ambitions defined in the Europe 2020 strategy and to reach a highemployment economy delivering social and territorial cohesion, new opportunities and new actions need to be identified and put into practice. Exploring opportunities for new employment, the PEOPLE miniprogramme promotes self-employment, home business start-ups, e-health and e-inclusion, social enterprises and other advanced mechanisms to foster local and regional services for social service based companies. Regional and local authorities throughout Europe are becoming more and more involved in employment policy, notably in the framework of local employment

development. Two projects are working on developing public employment services: the SolidarCity project looks at the role of local authorities in employment rate increase, while IES focuses on implementing employment policies at regional level. Also working with the topics of work force and employability, TOOL QUIZ develops links between the cultural and creative sector, knowledge-based economy and employability. To increase the productivity and competitiveness of European regions, regions need to invest in human capital and education. A well educated work force that is able to adapt to changes is necessary to support the development of the knowledge economy. In addition, regions need to create good working and living conditions to attract and retain work force. Many regions in Europe face the problem of brain drain – an outflow of highly educated and qualified people. This also occurs when individuals who completed their education elsewhere do not return to their home regions. Such obstacles towards territorial integration and competitiveness become very obvious in border regions. Countering brain drain

in border regions is the aim of the Brain Flow mini-programme, led by the region of North Rhine-Westphalia in Germany. This partnership of border regions works together to make their regions more attractive for highly qualified people, supports their main economic sectors, and improves higher education systems. The UNICREDS project also brings together deprived peripheral regions. The members of this partnership develop university collaboration among regions with multi-university campuses in their territories. The project demonstrates how the triple-helix model can turn peripheral regions into centres of excellence in research and innovation. The consortium includes partners from Seinäjoki, Finland and Västerbotten, Sweden.

Information society INTERREG IVC pays attention to the development of the information society, which is recognised as an important driver for the knowledge economy. The ICT sector already experiences higher than average growth rates. Nevertheless, the adoption of ICT applications in business remains relatively low, particularly in SMEs. A total of 25 Information Point North area partners are involved in projects promoting the uptake and efficient use of digital technologies.

Information society and the SMEs The number of SMEs using information and communication technologies innovatively and effectively is of vital importance to the realisation of the Lisbon and Gothenburg strategies. The DE-LAN project focuses on the effective deployment of new digital technologies and applications. The main emphasis of the project is on digital ecosystems – evolutionary self-organising systems that create an online digital market-place by connecting organisations, companies and individuals. Such digital cooperation allows SMEs to collaborate,

innovate and promote their products and services more widely. This partnership includes the Kaunas University of Technology from Lithuania, who is sharing their experience in e-business models, e-participation and e-governance. The EVITA project partners work with SMEs in regions with low IT penetration, granting them access to knowledge, information, e-business practices and the digital economy. Among others with partners from Sweden, Latvia and Lithuania, the project looks at e-learning and offers practical tools for implementing e-business training strategies. Complementing this, the ICT-VN project encourages SME interaction and value networks creation in three sectors: agrifood, tourism and services. The partners see ICT development as one of the main facilitators of such cooperation, because it allows smaller companies to cope with the requirements of the digital economy. The information society has an enormous potential to improve public services and foster growth that is not always used by policy-makers. The I-SPEED project partners identify, analyse and transfer good practice on the efficient use of ICT-based services. In addition,


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the partnership wishes to improve the competitiveness of their tourism economies. This partnership benefits from the experience of Hedmark County Council, Norway.

E-participation and public services ICT solutions are already widely used by government bodies. However, effective e-government and e-participation solutions involve rethinking processes and changing behaviour. Implemented well, e-solutions help to simplify and speed up cooperation between citizens, enterprises and organisations. Besides, electronic public services also help to reduce costs. The DLA project partners work on a common methodology to implement the digital local agenda and measure its impact on regional policies. The partners exchange good practice related to the use of ICT in public services ranging from e-inclusion and e-participation to e-business and e-learning.

Another project addressing the further acceleration of e-government and e-participation is eCitizen II. This partnership, led by the City of Tampere, Finland, is working on solutions to improve the interaction between citizens and public authorities. The partners share over 20 good practices to accelerate the development of e-government.

E-participation in Tampere As a part of the eCitizen II project, the City of Tampere in Finland shares their experience in designing, developing and implementing the city’s e-government strategy and e-participation tools. During 2001-2005 an extensive eTampere programme resulted in a city management model, which involves citizens in local decision-making. It ensured several digital public services, over 200 free internet access points and Internet training. In the Challenge of eCitizen project (INTERREG IIIC, 2005-2007), the city piloted smart card based e-services and created the e-participation system ‘Valma’ – a digital forum that enables citizens to take part in the city council decision-making.

ICT can be of particular great help to the health care sector, which has to cope with a rising demand for services and equal access for all citizens. Telemedicine – the provision of health care services at a distance – helps both patients and health care professionals. Telemedicine is not only useful for citizens living in remote places, but helps also to monitor patients who can stay at home while being monitored from a health care centre. RTF works with telemedicine at clinical, market and strategy levels. In addition to increasing the knowledge and skills of stakeholders, the project improves regional policy initiatives and facilitates the transfer of experience of telemedicine services between regions. RTF good practices of existing services focus on telemedicine services for chronic patients with Smokers’ Lung Disease (COPD), diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.

Telemedicine services in the Region of Southern Denmark The Region of Southern Denmark uses the exchange of good practice in RTF to improve existing telemedicine services at clinical level as well as to improve regional policy initiatives, aiming at development, implementation and deployment of telemedicine services. Over the past five years this has been one of the focus areas of the Region of Southern Denmark. All four hospital units of the region have implemented telemedicine services and more than 1 million electronic messages are transmitted every month within the region. Since 2009, the telemedicine service of the Region of Southern Denmark in the field of COPD (the ‘Patient Briefcase’) allows hospitals to carry out consultations with COPD patients at home via Internet, mobile phone networks or satellite technology. The patients are monitored for 1 week using daily 15-30 minute consultations including measurements. Feedback to the service has been very positive – the technology is easy to use, while the service is intimate and flexible. This good practice has decreased early readmissions by 14%.

Also working on the access and development of e-government and e-health services, IMMODI focuses o n E u ro p e a n m o u n t a i n o u s a n d rural regions. The partners of this Capitalisation project wish to spread the use of ICT and attain the full digital inclusion of all citizens by learning from each other about innovative public services. Information Point North area partners in the project include Blekinge Institute of Technology in Sweden, Kainuun Etu Ltd, Finland, and Bautzen Innovation Center, Germany, all supported by their relevant regional public authorities. The nine participating regions develop action plans to transfer good practices into their regional programmes. The PIKE Capitalisation project stimulates the successful uptake of the information society at regional level, looking at good practice on e-government and broadband services. The 10 partners include the Association of Local Authorities in Västernorrland County, Sweden. The partners share experience in granting internet access to public information and documents, facilitating the interaction between citizens and officials, and providing

wireless internet in cities. By transferring good practices into regional Action Plans, the partners have made €6.1 million available for implementing similar solutions in their regions. Free and open-source software can lead to competitiveness gains both for public administrations as well as for citizens and companies. The OSEPA partners believe that public administrations should play a leading role in demonstrating the value of free and open-source software by removing legal and organisational obstacles and acting as early adopters. The project creates awareness about such software and further explores its potential. Within the project, the Latvian Association of Local and Regional Governments is analysing the possibilities of applying open-source software, learning from the experience of several other partners.


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Implementing the CITIES project – interview with the Lead Partner Skaidre Raudyte, Klaipeda City Municipality Administration

How was the CITIES partnership developed? The CITIES project was initiated by Klaipeda City Municipality Administration and Klaipeda Economic Development Agency, which is a public body fully owned by the municipality. A short description of the project idea, activities, estimated budget, target sector and profile for potential partners were placed in the INTERREG IVC programme’s online project idea database. We then selected the most relevant project partners from more than 40 organisations who sent us their short profiles. The role of the Lead Partner was taken as a challenge to lead an international project and as a natural decision resulting from the initiation phase.

What kind of difficulties have you faced? The most difficult thing while applying was to coordinate communication between the partners and to collect the required information for filling in the application form without previous face-to-face contact. Now, during the implementation, the main challenge is to keep the project partners in a close partnership and to reach a high level of involvement in our joint activities.

How has your organisation benefited from the cooperation? Participation in the CITIES project has broadened our understanding of the creative industries sector as an important trend for economic development. It has also stimulated a dialogue with the creative community in Klaipeda. The staff of Klaipeda City Municipality has had a chance to increase their knowledge and skills in interregional seminars, workshops and study tours. We have visited successfully developed projects

and sites of creative industries in partner cities. More important, we have learned from the good practices in the CITIES network to improve our local policies on the development of creative industries.

What advice would you give to future INTERREG IVC Lead Partners? Being the Lead Partner of an international project is an invaluable experience and a huge responsibility at the same time. Surely, it is not easy to coordinate all the activities, especially those at the local level. Therefore, it is useful to establish personal contacts with each person participating in the project as a coordinator, an information manager or an expert. We would also encourage organisations from newer Member States to become Lead Partners as we have not faced any difficulties being a Lead Partner from a newer Member State – Lithuania. Don’t be afraid to try and you’ll not regret for sure!


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Priority 2: Environment and risk prevention Energy and sustainable transport In the context of scarce resources and in order to reduce the effects of climate change, European regions have a great role to play in promoting, developing and implementing renewable energy sources combined with energy efficiency strategies. Energy is the source of almost four-fifths of the total greenhouse gas emissions in the EU. Of these, the transport sector contributes to around one-third. Although there is still a long way to go to decouple economic growth from resource and energy use, European regions are already making good progress.

Several Information Point North area countries have achieved good results regarding the use of renewable energy sources and are well off in achieving their Europe 2020 goals. Altogether 47 partners from Information Point North area are involved in projects dealing with energy and sustainable transport.

Green energy Looking at renewable energy systems, RETS partners help local authorities make informed choices regarding the implementation of renewable energy strategies. Likewise, the partners of

RENREN are committed to increasing the use of renewable energy sources in their regions and achieving the targets of Europe 2020. The partnership includes regions well known all over Europe for their achievements in using and producing renewable energy: for example SchleswigHolstein in Germany, known for wind energy, and J채mtland County Council in Sweden, an expert region on biomass use, which aims at being a fossil-free region by 2050. Several other regions share their expertise in wind, ocean, hydropower, geothermal, biomass, solar thermal and photovoltaic energy.


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Geothermal energy – energy extracted from heat stored in the earth – is one of the most environmentally friendly and cost-effective energy resources in use. The GEO.POWER partners exchange good practice related to low enthalpy energy supply and prepare their transfer to regional programmes. An action plan is developed for each participating region, providing a set of regulatory, economical and technical proposals. These provide input to investment strategies for the application of ground coupled heat pumps. The BIO-EN-AREA project partners increase and optimise the use of bioenergy in their regions, focusing on different types of biomass. All partners draft and implement Regional Biomass Action Plans.

Biomass and biogas use in Southeast Sweden In Southeast of Sweden, about 50% of the energy supply comes from biomass combustion. The main part comes from biomass plants for district heating and the wood industry sector with around 250 plants in the region. The approximately 20 biogas plants in the region digest mainly waste and sewage. Within BIO-EN-AREA, the Swedish counties of Kalmar, Kronoberg and Blekinge share their experience of using biomass from agriculture and forestry – creating positive legal frameworks, good conditions for resources, and welldeveloped infrastructure. Through subprojects and trainings the partners also introduce the use of renewable primary products such as straw, fast growing woods, logs, pellets and wood residues.

The CO2FREE partners tackle the problem of climate change and the dependency on fossil fuels. The partnership exchanges ICT solutions to tackle energy challenges and to make transport more sustainable. The partners develop action plans to be implemented by making use of Structural Funds available in each participating region. The partners include North Karelia in Finland and Västernorrland in Sweden. North Karelia brings forward their Bioenergy Programme designed to create jobs, control climate change and increase energy self-sufficiency. The programme has resulted in renewable

energy constituting two-thirds of the whole energy consumption in the region. Green ICT in Västernorrland has reduced the environmental impact of ICT equipment and has set requirements for energy and environmental performance of buildings. Also developing low-carbon solutions is the LoCaRe project. The sub-projects of this mini-programme deal with the use of renewable energy sources in local energy systems, carbon capture and carbon sinks, procurement practices, low-carbon territorial planning and empowerment of citizens and enterprises.

Using climate change for growth and development in Southern Denmark Climate, renewable energy and energy efficiency have a high priority in the Region of Southern Denmark. Therefore, it has set up the LoCaRe project. Southern Denmark has several good practices to share with the partnership. The region is advanced in sustainable energy as well as in public-private partnerships. The regional development plan, business development strategy and sustainability strategy of the region are presented to other partners as good practice. The project contributes to achieving two out of five Southern Denmark’s regional objectives: increasing employment and reducing CO2-emissions. In addition, the region receives valuable input and experience from other partners to draw up a new regional development plan.


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Energy efficiency The EU climate and energy package is considered essential to an energy efficient and low-carbon Europe. Its three objectives have become generally known as the 20-20-20 targets: a 20% cut in emissions of greenhouse gases by 2020, compared with 1990 levels, a 20% increase in the share of renewable energy sources, and a 20% cut in energy consumption. The partners of the POWER miniprogramme explore ways to move towards a low-carbon economy at the regional level. The five areas of cooperation are energy efficiency and renewable energies, sustainable transport, eco-innovation and environmental technologies, behaviour change, and mainstreaming with EU structural funds. The project results in 15,000 citizens, industrial customers and public authorities with increased capacity and awareness in reducing their carbon footprint.

Advancing the low-carbon economy in Tallinn, Estonia Tallinn has had a climate strategy only for the last two years. Therefore, it is very important for them to cooperate with regions that already have successful climate and energy strategies in place. Partners from Tallinn and its surrounding areas participate in three POWER subprojects on energy efficiency, sustainable transport and behaviour change. They learn about developing energy saving initiatives from the University of Seville in Spain and about designing climate agreements from Uppsala Region in Sweden, which will make both the public and the private sector pay more attention to environmental sustainability. Tallinn also learns to develop measures of travel intensity and carbon audits at regional, business and the individual level.

Citizens as private and public actors account for a major share of local energy consumption. In addition, their behavioural patterns can easily be changed if they feel convinced by good examples and are open to copying them. The EnercitEE project helps cities and citizens become more energy-efficient. In addition to ecological results, the partners aim for economic results – relieving financial pressure on private households. This project raises awareness of the energy-saving potential and provides practical guidelines for improving the daily energy performance of citizens. The partners aim to involve more than 1000 stakeholders and citizens in the activities and subprojects of this mini-programme. The Saxon State Ministry of the Environment and Agriculture contributes to the project with their experience in thirdparty financing, energy performance of buildings and SMEs, and climate campaigns in schools. Other partners include the Energy Agency of Southeast Sweden, where the counties of Kalmar and Kronoberg have a target of 65% of renewable energy sources and aim to become fossil-free in 2030/2050.

Renewable energy sources in Västernorrland, Sweden

In an average city, the lighting of public space accounts for 60% of public energy use. Any reduction that can be achieved will have a clear impact on the total energy use, on CO2 emissions and on public finances. The PLUS project makes a contribution to decreasing energy use and rationalising energy consumption related to public lighting. Good practices of the partners are used to improve the public lighting strategies of participating cities and regions. The solutions are later to be financed through Structural Funds programmes. The partnership includes the City of Tallinn, Estonia, experienced in high pressure sodium (HPS) luminaires,

outdoor LED lighting in public areas and tele-management of lighting systems. In addition, the City of Leipzig, Germany, shares their knowledge in the field of light designing in public spaces, experience with lighting strategies and organising lights events. MORE4NRG promotes energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy sources. The partners exchange good practice on sustainable energy policies and jointly develop an integrated monitoring tool to follow their progress in achieving energy targets.

Västernorrland Region is a partner in the MORE4NRG project, where they share several good practices regarding the use of hydro-power, district heating, innovative snow-cooling and energy efficiency in public buildings. Implementing the ‘Energy Factor 2’ project, the region managed to reduce the heat and electricity consumption in public buildings by 30%. Therefore, the project has saved the county council €4 million a year. The solutions implemented within this project include the snow-cooling method, in use since 2000: snow is stored in the winter and melts in the summer. The melt water is used to cool a hospital during the summer months. The plant consists of a reservoir the size of a football pitch. Approximately 70,000 cubic metres of snow is collected in the pitch and covered by a 20cm layer of wood chips. Snow cooling offers a number of benefits: no refrigerants are used and electricity consumption is reduced by 90%. More information about the project is available at www.lvn.se/environment.


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Sustainable transport Although EU growth strategies are formulated and targeted at the national level, their implementation needs to be tailored to regional and local needs and circumstances. The EU 2020 going local Capitalisation project contributes to the effective implementation of the current Lisbon and Gothenburg strategies and the new EU 2020 strategy at local and regional level. The focus of the partnership is on energy efficiency and sustainable transport. The partnership is led by the Swedish region of Sörmland, where a regional version of the Lisbon strategy has been declared a national good practice. The CAPRICE project is about integrated and sustainable transport management

in capital regions. The partnership includes regions where public transport authorities are already successfully working for several years (e.g. Berlin) as well as regions who wish to set up such bodies (e.g. Vilnius). Good practice is exchanged in setting up legal frameworks and financing models, operation of low consumption vehicle fleets, demanddriven flexible transport services, travel information services and advanced ticketing solutions. The partners develop policy recommendations on integrated seamless passenger information services to stimulate the use of public transport and non-motorised modes of transport. Thereby, the partners advance the integration of their urban mobility management schemes.

Travel information systems in Berlin and Warsaw VBB - the traffic association of Berlin and Brandenburg, Germany, shares its experience of informing passengers on travel information with the public transport authority ZTM of Warsaw, Poland. Within CAPRICE a travel information service system was built for the Warsaw region. This offers the citizens of the Polish capital access to travel information for their region and, for both metropolitan regions, access to travel information data for their convenience. The service for the Warsaw region is available at http:// wyszukiwarka.ztm.waw.pl/bin/query.exe/ en as well as on the Berlin-Brandenburg travel planner website at http://euspirit. vbb-fahrinfo.de.

The partners of CATCH_MR explore and adapt sustainable transport solutions for metropolises and their surrounding areas. The partners wish to reduce transport needs and increase the share of environmentally friendly transport. In addition to policy recommendations, the results of the project include a guide on efficient mobility and sustainable growth in metropolitan regions.

Meeting the challenge of traffic growth in and around Oslo, Norway Within the CATCH_MR project, the City of Oslo and the County of Akershus are sharing their good practice, for example on financing mechanisms for increasing transport capacity. For over 20 years Oslo centre has had a toll-ring in place to raise funds and manage traffic growth. This is a joint effort of the city, the surrounding county and the central government. The partners hope to integrate this within the new joint planning cooperation between Oslo and Akershus. In addition, the project provides new knowledge and policy perspectives for improving public transport in the region, for example by better integrating local train services with other transport modes.

Throughout the EU, increased reliance on cars has resulted in high levels of congestion and more pollution, leading to economic, environmental and health problems. Mobility management aims to reduce the reliance on cars by encouraging travellers to use other modes of transport. By implementing high quality mobility management techniques and policies, PIMMS TRANSFER partners stimulate a modal shift towards more sustainable forms of transport. The partnership, including authorities from Germany, Sweden and Lithuania, has a special interest in improving mobility management schemes in the newer Member States. Good practices are related to demand management, land use and development, travel planning, public pledge schemes, community engagement of specific user groups, etc. The PIMMS CAPITAL Capitalisation project extends the cooperation of PIMMS TRANSFER, taking it to a regional level. It comprises ‘soft’ measures (e.g. information and coordination of existing services) that enhance the effectiveness of ‘hard’ measures of traffic planning (e.g. new tram lines, new roads and new bike tracks). The partners stimulate

a modal shift towards more sustainable forms of transport by developing mobility management actions in their regional Structural Funds programmes. The MMOVE project supports interregional exchange on sustainable mobility policies for medium-sized European cities (populations of 50,000250,000). Among the 12 partners are City of Mölndal, Sweden, Municipality of Varberg, Sweden, and the City of Ulm, Germany. Their good practices cover topics such as encouraging the use of alternative means of transport and intelligent transport systems. Recent increases in European transport flows lead to imbalances in the use of different transport modes. While road networks are heavily loaded and cause congestion, sea-based transport and especially intra-European short sea shipping shows high capacity reserves. The Port Integration project uses ports to integrate and balance the usage of maritime and hinterland transport structures. The partnership, which includes partners from Germany, Finland, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, exchanges innovative logistic concepts to smoothen and fasten landside transport flows.


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Natural and technological risks, climate change The range of natural hazards that affect the development of regions within the EU is wide, including floods, forest fires, droughts, extreme temperatures and winter storms. Their occurrence is more and more frequent also in Northern Europe, partly due to climate change. In addition to natural hazards, man-made hazards pose threat to human health, wellbeing and the environment. Technological hazards, such as oil spills and industrial accidents, can have very long-lasting unnatural effects. Climate change is another challenge for this decade and beyond. All European regions need to contribute to the objective of reducing greenhouse gases to a level that will not cause unnatural variations of the Earth’s climate. Altogether 16 partners from the Information Point North area are involved in projects dealing with these challenges. A growing number of European local and regional authorities have started to design and implement spatial mitigation strategies to minimise the impact of possible extreme events. MiSRaR partners protect the environment, people and property against the destructive impact of natural

and technological hazards. The partners cooperate to improve risk management policies by including risk assessment and risk management in spatial planning. The project improves every step of risk mitigation, from prevention to response and recovery. Partners exchange knowledge of spatial risk mitigation in the fields of forest fires, flooding, landslides and industrial dangers. In this project, Tallinn City Government, Estonia, shares their experience in mapping risks in Natura 2000 areas. In return, the municipality is learning from other partners how to identify, map, assess and mitigate risks. As a result, Tallinn will develop a risk assessment, evaluation and mitigation plan.

Challenges related to water and forests The delta and estuaries regions in Europe face similar problems and opportunities. All of them need to deal with a very dynamic development of urbanisation, economic activities, infrastructure, natural and technological risks. DeltaNet partners develop coordinated spatial planning measures in geographically sensitive areas. The partnership tackles issues such as insufficient flood and sediment

management, deteriorating environment and lack of sustainable coordinated delta policies. Areas in focus include the delta areas of Rhine, Danube and Elbe rivers. Another project building on river basin cooperation is FLOOD-WISE. This project allows water managers from ten European countries to exchange experience related to flood risk management. River basins where partners improve cross-border flood risk management include Roer and Elbe. The good practices and results of the project are published in the Water Information System for Europe database at www.wise-rtd.info. Having floods, wild fires and the protection of vulnerable natural areas in mind, policymakers face the need to adapt land use to climate change. The F:ACTS! project focuses on risk-prone areas that lack resilience to respond to and recover from extreme weather conditions. The project partners include the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Lithuania and the Lithuanian National Land Service. The project offers the Ministry of Agriculture knowledge how to better combat climate change through the use of available land resources. The ministry is also interested in sustainable forestry development and

the use of abandoned land that is no longer used for agriculture. The National Land Service benefits from knowledge that will help them improve their territorial planning related to climate change. Trees and woodlands deliver multiple economic, environmental and social benefits. At the same time, forest fires are a huge problem for many European regions, threatening both human lives and property. Effective preventive measures, early detection and fast reaction are crucial to protecting the environment. The EUFOFINET project improves risk prevention and management policies related to forest fires. EFFMIS partners focus on information systems for the early

detection and confrontation of wildfires in sensitive areas. It is important to leave to future generations forests that are well adapted and resilient to natural risks, including the effects of climate change. FUTUREforest partners share ideas on how European forests could better adapt to climate change. The partners improve and adapt forest management policies and practices looking at water balance, soil, biodiversity, timber and non-timber forest products, air quality, and natural risks. The Latvian partner in the project, Ministry of Agriculture, focuses on timber production, species turnover and development as well as on CO² savings.

Artificial regeneration of forests in Latvia One of the good practices shared by the Latvian Ministry of Agriculture in the FUTUREforest project is its experience in artificial forest regeneration. A large network of seed orchards, nurseries and trial sites was established in Latvia already in the 1960s. The work mainly focuses on genetic and physiological improvement of tree species such as silver birch, Scots pine, Norwegian spruce and black alder. Those species have been selected for their growth capacity, quality, and – in light of climate change – resilience to drought and pests. Results reveal that the use of selected seed material can notably improve stand growth and quality. Moreover, stands established using selected plant material have proved to take in and lock up more carbon dioxide in living biomass and plant litter than naturally regenerated stands established on similar sites.


Natural and technological risks, climate change

Cultural heritage and landscapes

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Climate change The challenge of climate change calls for both mitigation and adaptation actions. To reach the EU’s objective of keeping the global average temperature increase below 2°C compared to preindustrial levels, global emissions need to be stabilised in the short term and reduced in the medium and long term. Yet, irrespective of the effectiveness of any mitigation measures taken, climate change is already evident and its impacts are inevitable for the next century and beyond. The majority of European regions will be affected by climate change. Northern Europe will be affected by

increased precipitation; its coastal zones face sea level rise and storms. In the global context of fighting against climate change, the European Union has committed itself to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by at least 20% by 2020. The ClimactRegions project is part of this dynamic, strengthening regional capacity to develop and implement policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations are now at their highest since records began. As a result, urban areas are vulnerable to increased temperatures and flooding. By integrating climate change adaptation into regional planning and

development, the GRaBS project makes communities less vulnerable to these risks. The partnership raises awareness about the importance of green infrastructure such as gardens, parks, green corridors, green roofs and blue infrastructure such as water bodies, rivers, streams, sustainable drainage systems. The Lithuanian partner, Klaipeda University Coastal Research and Planning Institute, contributes to this goal by developing, testing and applying the GRaBS climate risk and vulnerability assessment tool. The Swedish partner, City of Malmö, shares their expertise of multifunctional integration of green and blue infrastructure within urban environment. At the same time, Malmö builds on the experience of other partners to create a multidimensional regional planning strategy. The RegioClima project also assists regions with facing new climate conditions. The partnership includes the Estonian Marine Institute of the University of Tartu. In addition to raising awareness and understanding, the partners produce policy recommendations to adapt to climate change. Furthermore, the partnership seeks to exploit the new opportunities arising from climate change and use the new climate conditions to their benefit.

Cultural heritage and landscapes The whole European territory possesses a wide range of cultural assets and landscapes, which are increasingly threatened with destruction and decay due to natural and human factors. The utilisation of brownfields as well as contaminated and abandoned lands is an increasingly important element of sustainable spatial development, helping to reduce the effects of city expansion. Altogether 12 partners from the Information Point North area deal with the protection, preservation, management and enhancement of cultural heritage and landscapes. As cities become more congested and green space and landscapes disappear, innovative policies dealing with urban regeneration are increasingly important. Building on brownfield land is essential for sustainable regional development. The B-TEAM project promotes sustainable brownfield regeneration. Brownfield redevelopment has become an important policy theme as governments implement new programmes to redevelop abandoned land where redevelopment is complicated by real or perceived contamination.

Converting brownfields in Vilnius, Lithuania Vilnius city started the conversion of brownfield land in 2005. Several large regeneration projects were implemented, such as the redevelopment of former factories in the central part of Vilnius city. The main problem was that many former industrial units are situated in nature protection areas. One of the top priorities of the Vilnius Master Plan until 2015 is to promote industry reorganisation and encourage the development of new technologies. A common policy approach and the prioritisation of brownfield regeneration are still missing in Vilnius. Therefore, the municipality is keen to learn how other partners tackle brownfield regeneration. As land mostly belongs to private developers, it is especially important to strengthen the city’s position by introducing a strong policy framework for decision-making. With the support of B-Team and sustainable brownfield regeneration policies, the city will be able to protect and rationally exploit valuable elements of its landscape, to enhance the elements characteristic to Vilnius City and its surroundings, and to form a unique image of the city.


Cultural heritage and landscapes

Water management

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Urban and periurban areas are facing demographic change, climate change, increasing economic constraints and various environmental challenges. The partners of EUROSCAPES have the ambitious objective of developing a new model of landscape management. This model for natural and cultural landscapes will merge environmental, quality and economical approaches, integrate education as well as take into account territorial strategies and urban master plans. The partnership includes Sigulda District Council, Latvia, who

plans to use the knowledge gained to develop local landscape plans, improve the management of green and urban landscapes, and raise their inhabitants’ awareness of landscape management. Tourism is a common denominator of all European regions, urban and rural. Each territory has its own cultural heritage and landscape that deserve to be preserved. However, tourism can become a threat to the beauty and diversity of the landscapes, having negative environmental, sociocultural and economic impacts on the host communities.

The PRESERVE projects tries to find a right balance between the autonomous development of the destinations and the protection of their environment on the one hand and the development of competitive economic activities on the other hand. The main objective of the project is to improve the effectiveness of regional development policies related to cultural heritage and to support sustainable tourism. The partnership benefits from the experience of the Lithuanian partner Alytus County Governor’s administration, the Danish partner Syddansk Turism, and the Swedish partner Örebro Regional Development Council.

Water management According to the European Commission data, 20% of all surface water in the European Union is seriously threatened with pollution, 60% of European cities overexploit their groundwater resources and 50% of wetlands have an endangered status due to groundwater overexploitation4 11 partners from Information Point North area contribute to solving problems related to water management.

The VITOUR LANDSCAPE project gathers European UNESCO World Heritage wine growing areas, including the Upper Middle Rhine Valley in Germany. The partners elaborate European Guidelines for wine growing cultural landscape preservation and enhancement, with special regards to endangered areas and vineyards.

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more info at www.europa.eu.int/comm/environment/water

Over 95% of the world’s freshwater, excluding glaciers and ice caps, is found underground. Maintaining the groundwater flow and keeping it free from pollution is vital for surface water ecosystems. Groundwater is also a crucial source of drinking water, supplying the water systems for three out of

four EU citizens. In this context, the SHARP project partners exchange on innovative technologies to protect groundwater resources for future generations. The partners exchange practical know-how concerning groundwater management tools, monitoring systems, drinking water safety plans, risk management tools, etc.


Water management

Water management

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The SIGMA for Water partners develop sustainable integral management approaches for water areas. The partnership improves the capacity for developing new lakes and wetlands for climate change adaptation. In addition, the partners wish to improve water quality. The results of the project include integrated master plans and action plans for new lakes and wetlands. These plans cover a range of issues such as planning, drainage, tourism and funding.

Developing new lakes in Saxony-Anhalt, Germany Within the SIGMA for Water project, Merseburg Innovation and Technology Centre, Germany, is developing the Geisel Valley Lake. This is an artificial lake created after the dismantling of the coal mining industry in June 1993, leaving behind a great hole of 2,600 hectares – the biggest artificial lake in Germany. In 2003, an 18-km-long ductwork was used to pump water from the Saale River to fill the pit. The whole flooding procedure should last about 7 years, requiring more than 300 Million Euro of public and private investments. In the end, the Geisel Valley Lake should expand upon 1,800 hectares with 41-km-long shores and depth up to 80 meters. The planned infrastructure includes camping grounds, boathouses, summer residences and bureaus, harbours, beaches, playgrounds, bridle and bicycle paths as well as hiking trails, hotels, shops and restaurants. This good practice provides input to the master plans and action plans to be developed in other partner regions for developing and implementing new lakes and wetlands.

More than one-third of Europe’s population lives within 50km of the coast, exerting environmental, social and economic pressure on sustainable development. The SUSTAIN partners develop a universal tool to help deliver sustainability on European coasts. Based on easily measurable indicators, this tool will be applicable to all 22 coastal states of the European Union. The WATER CoRe project provides a European exchange platform for water scarcity and drought issues at regional and local level. In addition to improving water management policies, the partners raise awareness of the water saving potential in their regions. The partnership works with topics such as the demand-side of water management, handling drought periods, climate change effects, public awareness and participation. Project results include a digital exchange platform, a good practice handbook, regional action plans, policy recommendations and an e-learning programme. The lead partner of the project is the Ministry of Environment, Energy, Agriculture and Consumer Protection of Hessen, Germany. In this project they share their experience in the fields of technical and financial control of the water demand-side management,

benchmarking, as well as multimedia campaigns. In addition, the ministry will improve its existing policy instruments and develop new ones.

Managing ports and waterways The SuPorts project provides ports with customised environmental management tools. The partners foster the design and implementation of environmental management strategies in local ports. The first objective of the project is to identify and promote good practice in the field of dredging, protecting marine biodiversity and involving stakeholders. The second aim is to identify environmental management tools appropriate for smaller ports. The result of this work provides all European local ports, including Klaipeda, Lithuania, with practical guides on how to design and implement sustainable strategies and environmental management tools.

Recreation and living along the shores of canals, rivers and lakes represents a growing opportunity to boost the economic performance of regions and towns with inland waterways. However, the increased use of waterways can also have negative impacts on the quality of the environment. The WF project improves the management of regional inland waterways by promoting an integrated, sustainable and participatory approach. The partnership includes municipalities and regions from Norway, Sweden, Finland and Latvia. The partners exchange know-how on management strategies and regional policies that deal with the conflicting interests arising from an increased multifunctional use of waterways. As regional inland waterways are often part of protected natural areas, the project also addresses environmental issues.

Managing inland waterways in Telemark, Norway Telemark County Council is responsible for the maintenance and development of the Telemark Waterway. The 105km-long waterway is the largest tourist attraction in the county and acts as an important resource for the whole of Telemark and its six waterway municipalities. Generating and stimulating economic, tourism and business development is an important aspect of the county’s strategic plan. Telemark County Council contributes to the WF project with their experience of using waterways to stimulate regional and economic development. The exchange of good practice and cooperation on joint marketing activities will lead to a better political involvement and improved policies for managing waterways in the region.


Waste prevention and management

Waste prevention and management

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Waste prevention and management

policies related to waste prevention and management.

The European Union faces a growing problem of waste management. The increase in total waste generation has proportionally outpaced GDP growth over the last decades. This is mainly due to the increase in municipal waste, which is the single fastest growing waste stream. From Information Point North area, a total of 6 partners are trying to improve

The C2CN partnership brings together European regions to share and capitalise on regional good practice in waste prevention and management. This Capitalisation project includes Kainuun Etu Ltd from Finland as a partner. The partnership gathers and disseminates knowledge on ‘cradle to cradle’ principles and draws up action plans on how the solutions can be implemented through

regional programmes. According to the ‘cradle to cradle’ principle, people should be able to continue producing, consuming and living as they are accustomed to doing, but in such a way that their products, buildings and regions do not pollute the ecological system or exhaust energy sources. All this should be achieved by innovative design. The main idea of this concept is using materials that make up one product in another product after the life cycle of the first has ended. The project has four target areas: industry, area-specific spatial development, building design and governance. The main results are 10 regional action plans, a good practice handbook and a guide on waste management. The Pre-Waste project improves the effectiveness of waste prevention policies to reduce waste production and hazardousness. During the three-year project, partners from all over Europe compare and improve their regional waste policies.

Waste prevention in Tampere, Finland Ta m p e r e R e g i o n a l S o l i d Wa s t e Management Ltd manages the solid waste of the region on behalf of its 17 owner municipalities. The public company has several good practices to share with the Pre-Waste partnership. One of these is the Gaabriella Kaatis puppet theatre project, which toured the region in 20012006. This project taught pre-school aged children and first grade pupils how to prevent and separate waste. Other good practices include the yearly waste calendar with hints for waste prevention and the Kiertori second-hand market service on the company’s web page, to name a few. Tampere Regional Solid Waste Management Ltd learns from other partners to further develop its strategy and test new waste prevention approaches.

Europe has around 150,000 former landfills covering approximately 300,000 hectares. Most of these former landfills are not sufficiently secured and isolated from the environment. At the same time many local and regional authorities struggle to find enough suitable and free space for developments that contribute to the competitiveness and attractiveness of their regions. In many cases the re-development of abandoned landfill sites is an unexpected, but a very viable solution for this issue. By combining environmental containment measures with the creation of new uses for landfill sites, the SufalNet4EU project helps to solve two problems at once. The range of possible alternative uses for properly closed landfills is large, including city-parks, forestry and ecological zones, recreational areas, commercial, industrial and residential areas. One of the partners to share

their good practice in landfill closure and aftercare is the County of Böblingen, Germany. In addition, the Waste Recycling Company of County Ludwigsburg GmbH is sharing their experience of landfill management. The W2E project also looks at the potential to improve sustainable waste management in European regions. The partners exchange knowledge and good practice about techniques to recover energy from waste. In addition, partner regions develop action plans to reduce the amount of waste going to landfills and develop a tool to assess regional potential for energy recovery from waste. This project is led by the County Administrative Board of Östergötland, Sweden.


Biodiversity and preservation of natural heritage; air quality

Biodiversity and preservation of natural heritage; air quality

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Biodiversity and preservation of natural heritage; air quality P re s e r v i n g n a t u r a l h e r i t a g e a n d biodiversity is one of the most pressing challenges for the EU. A healthy natural environment plays an important role in the economy and helps to improve the quality of life. A lack of attention to the linkages between biodiversity and economic development can threaten a number of European species. The main challenges include integrating NATURA 2000 into other land use activities and policies to achieve sustainable development. A total of 4 partners from the Information Point North area are tackling these challenges. The continuous concentration of former rural population towards urban or periurban areas leads to different land utilisation patterns and abandoning of traditional practices. The COMMONS project tackles the challenge of territorial management in marginal lands. The partners focus on common lands – lands that are owned by one person but can be used in common with others, for instance with a local community. The partnership, including the Swedish Forest Agency, compares regional policies and strategies for the management of forest-based common lands.

The partnership of the REVERSE project promotes biodiversity by favouring positive action in their territories. The project looks at three topics from the aspect of biodiversity: agriculture and food production, tourism, and land development. The partners develop tools for local decision-makers so that they could better take biodiversity into account in policy-making.

Bremen sharing experience in preserving biodiversity One of the German partners in this project, the Senator for Environment, Building, Traffic and European affairs of the federal state of Bremen, is responsible for 23 NATURA 2000 sites. These sites cover an area of about 8,300 ha, which constitutes about 20% of the whole area of the federal state. Within the REVERSE project, they share their experience of implementing programmes related to the nature-friendly use of wetlands, ecologically friendly cleaning of ditches and protection of meadow birds. Other topics for exchange include excursions in the beautiful wetlands with historical peat boats and the preparation of a new landscape programme for the city of Bremen.


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Implementing INTERREG IVC projects – Four questions to German regional contact points What makes INTERREG IVC a good tool for regional development? INTERREG IVC allows regions to cooperate in a Europe-wide context. Thereby it offers a good opportunity to improve and further elaborate regional development policies. As a bottom-up programme it reflects regional needs and paves the way for a common understanding of various problems, solutions and approaches.

What advice would you give to organisations wishing to apply to INTERREG IVC? Potential partners should take sufficient time to prepare the application. They need to read the instructions very carefully as there can be several pitfalls. Regarding project content, they should ensure that the proposed activities are thematically in

line with the INTERREG IVC programme. In addition, the cooperation should lead to a strengthened position of their local or regional economy/administration, to new approaches and better solutions.

Which aspects should new projects take into account when forming a partnership? Invest time (and money) to get to know each other in order to form a reliable consortium. Check the different needs and jointly define the common denominator respecting the needs of all partners. It is important to involve all partners in the preparation phase and ensure that you talk the same language, that you mean the same things when using the same terminology. You should also keep each other informed about the proceedings and difficulties in the partner regions.

What do you think is essential for a project to achieve good results at the policy level? The issue tackled by the project needs to be on the region’s political agenda. The partners should ensure sufficient political backing to the project from the preparation phase until the end of the project duration. This includes the willingness to look for new approaches and instruments as well as the readiness to implement these. In addition, it might be useful to give the politicians a role in the project, such as the political monitoring of the project’s progress. Finally, try to communicate the results and outputs of the project in a way that they link up with the “politician’s world”.


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INTERREG IVC – building blocks for macroregional strategies INTERREG IVC, as a capitalisation programme, has helped regions to collect and transfer good practices, thus improving the efficiency of regional and local policies. By January 2011, INTERREG IVC projects have identified more than 1300 good practices to be transferred between European regions. The know-how gathered by interregional networks can be used as building blocks not only by the participating regions, but by any other regions, national states and transnational areas. This chapter illustrates how INTERREG IVC projects can contribute to the achievement of macro-regional goals. It looks at the Baltic Sea Region and EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region, as all 8 INTERREG IVC North area countries are targeted by the strategy, either with their full territory or regarding specific themes and geographical areas.

EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region The EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region, endorsed by the European Council in October 2009, responds to the main challenges facing the region that no country can solve on its own. The strategy offers policy-makers and other bodies a framework for effective action. Four challenges, which affect the region as a whole, have been identified along with the steps that need to be taken to alleviate them. Four pillars and 15 priority areas of the strategy 1. To promote a sustainable environment • Reducing nutrient inputs • Preserving biodiversity • Reducing the use of hazardous substances • Promoting clean shipping • Mitigating and adapting to climate change

2. To enhance the region’s prosperity • Removing hindrances to the internal market • Boosting research and innovation • Promoting entrepreneurship • Making agriculture, forestry and fisheries more sustainable 3. To i n c re a s e a c c e s s i b i l i t y a n d attractiveness • Improving access to and the efficiency of the energy markets • Improving transport links • Reinforcing the attractiveness of the region 4. To ensure safety and security in the region • Improving maritime safety and security • Working on protection from maritime and land disasters • Fighting cross-border crime


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Synergies between INTERREG IVC projects and the strategy INTERREG IVC projects exchange experience in the fields of innovation and knowledge management as well as environment and risk prevention. Therefore, a number of projects tackle the challenges mentioned in the strategy. The largest proportion of projects contribute to the achievement of the second priority of the EUSBSR “To enhance the region’s prosperity”, facilitating not only the increase of the region’s innovation and research potential, but also contributing to improving the entrepreneurial environment. In addition, under the INTERREG IVC programme priority ‘environment and risk prevention’, partners work together in order to maintain and improve the quality of the environment as well as to increase the attractiveness of European regions. The good practices identified all over Europe by INTERREG IVC projects can contribute to maintaining and reinforcing the attractiveness of the Baltic Sea Region. Some examples of INTERREG IVC projects that could provide good practices for the Priority Areas of the strategy are presented in the following

text, with references to the specific Priority Areas (PA) in brackets.

these projects are also contributing to the general promotion of the region as a ‘green region’.

Making the Baltic Sea Region an environmentally sustainable place

Making the Baltic Sea Region a prosperous place

The SuPorts project contributes to the preservation of natural zones and biodiversity (PA 2). The project partners, including Klaipeda State Seaport Authority, Lithuania, help local ports design better environmental strategies. The project exchanges experience in the fields of dredging and protection of marine biodiversity, which are pointed out as main challenges in the strategy.

The overall ambition of the INTERREG IVC priority ‘innovation and the knowledge management’ is to contribute to the reduction of regional disparities throughout Europe by strengthening regional innovation potential. 64% of partners from Information Point North area are involved in projects dealing with topics related to innovation and the knowledge economy. It is unfortunately impossible to list all projects and good practices here. Indeed, the projects are as diverse as the interregional partnerships that they are composed of.

An even larger number of INTERREG IVC projects contribute to the mitigation and adaption to climate change (PA 5). These include GRaBS, RegioClima, RSC, Climactregions, F:ACTS! and Citeair II, to name a few. These projects provide input to the much needed exchange of experience and the actual transfer of good practice on climate change adaptation strategies to local and regional authorities. Equally important is to mention some of the projects that are dealing with energy efficiency - EnercitEE, LoCaRe, RENREN and RETS. By sharing their good practice, partners from the Baltic Sea region within

A few examples should also be given of the many projects that could contribute to Priority Area 8, ‘implementing the Small Business Act: to promote entrepreneurship, strengthen SMEs and increase the efficient use of human resources three partners from the Baltic Sea Region’. The ENTREDI project contributes to the general discussion on entrepreneurship support and SME development. Cooperation between

business support institutions is the main focus area of the IMAGEEN partnership. Others include the SEE project that looks at design policies and is closely related to the aims of the flagship project 8.6 ‘Make the Baltic Sea region a leader in design”. In addition, the IES project, which supports cooperation between public employment service providers, could be interesting for the flagship project 8.8 ‘Cooperation between Public Employment services’. Finally, WINNET 8, including ten partners from the Baltic Sea Region area, exchanges tools for decreasing labour market segregation and encouraging female entrepreneurship. Thereby it is in line with the strategy’s strategic action ‘Encourage and promote female entrepreneurship’. Involving seven metropolitan cities of the Baltic Sea Region, the Creative Metropoles project has great potential to increase the overall conditions for growth in the region. Involving policy makers and stakeholders, the project reduces institutional barriers, extends cooperation between regional players and helps to internationalise creative industries (PA 7, 8). More particularly, within the framework of this project, the partners have analysed the capacity and

effectiveness of the public sector to unlock and support the economic potential of the creative economy. The related Situation Analysis of

11 cities5 presents good practices and identifies growth potential. This document could be useful to consult when drafting the common Baltic Sea Region strategy for promotion of services innovations. Other projects that could provide solutions for Priority Area 7 include I4W, which focuses on innovation for welfare. The project improves policies that stimulate technology-driven innovation in the field of health and safety, thereby providing good examples for the Baltic Sea Region, which wishes to become a globally leading and prosperous “Health Region”. In addition, the RAPIDE and MKW partners work on bringing innovations to the market. Several further projects deal with exchanging on innovation support instruments and developing cluster collaborations (e.g. ERIK ACTION, MINI EUROPE, INOLINK, nano4m, ChemClust, ECREIN+, to name a few).

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www.creativemetropoles.eu/uploads/files/

report_cm_final_formatted_02.2010.pdf

Making the Baltic Sea Region an accessible and attractive place Some of the objectives of this pillar of the strategy have been identified as interest areas by a number of INTERREG IVC partnerships. One such example is the Port Integration project that finds ways to better balance the usage of maritime and hinterland transport modes. The project analyses the possibilities to combine aspects of transport and logistics, with also having the environment in mind. The partnership includes several partners from the Baltic Sea Region area: Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg, Ministry for Economy and Labor Affairs (DE), Port of Hamburg (DE), Port of Hamina (FI), Port of Tallinn (EE), Freeport of Riga Authority (LV) and Klaipeda State Seaport Authority (LT). Taking the project’s focus and its strategic partnership into account, their experience and good practices are worth consulting especially when discussing the efficiency of Baltic Sea Region freight transport and possible logistics solutions. Therefore, it can contribute to Priority Area 11 ‘To improve internal and external transport links’. More specifically, it could be of interest to flagship project 11.5 ‘Cooperate for smarter transport’, which improves safety, freight logistics


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efficiency, shifting freight from road to rail and sea, and minimising environmental impact of transport in the region. A number of INTERREG IVC partnerships exchange solutions to problems caused by demographic change, as well as to a lack of services in sparsely populated areas. For example the RTF partners use their experience in the field of telemedicine to improve access to and quality of healthcare. This could provide input to Priority Area 12 ‘To maintain and reinforce attractiveness of the Baltic Sea Region in particular through education and youth, tourism, culture and health’. In particular, the project promotes e-health technology as a means for closing gaps in healthcare access and quality. Another partnership cooperating in the field of the information society is the eCitizen II project, enhancing the development of cost-effective, inclusive, efficient and effective e-government policies and strategies. This project, involving four partners from the region has a strong commitment to improving the interaction between citizens and public authorities.

Making the Baltic Sea Region a safe and secure place Due to the specific focus of this pillar, INTERREG IVC partners can mainly contribute with their experience in risk management and increasing the response capacity to extreme weather events, such as floods and forest fires. As the likelihood of extreme weather events is expected to increase, regions should be ready to anticipate potential disasters and cope with the consequences. For example, within the framework of FloodWise, partners work together to find better solutions for the improvement of cross-border flood risk management in European river basins. The listed projects are just a few examples of how the experience of partners from all across Europe and the results of interregional projects could be used for the benefit of European regions. Although this chapter presents INTERREG IVC projects in the light of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region, the good practices and experience are just as valid for any other geographical area in Europe. If you wish to learn more about

the projects, please check the INTERREG IVC approved projects database at www. interreg4c.eu or consult the project websites listed on the following pages.

Project partners from Information Point North area Project acronym

page

DE

DK

EE

FI

LT

LV

NO

SE

Website

PRIORITY 1: Innovation and the knowledge economy Sub-theme: Innovation, research and technology development ChemClust

21

3

www.chemclust.eu

CLIQ

16

2

2

2

www.cliqproject.eu

DISTRICT+

18

1

1

www.districtplus.eu

ECREIN+

20

1

1

i4c.eu/showProject.html?ID=39900

ERIK ACTION

19

1

www.eriknetwork.net/erikaction

ERMIS

19

2

www.ermisproject.eu

EURIS

16

1

www.euris-programme.eu

FRESH

20

4

www.freshproject.eu

I4W

20

1

www.innovation4welfare.eu

INNOHUBS

19

1

1

www.innohubs.eu

INNOPOLIS

16

2

www.inno-polis.eu

INOLINK

19

1

www.inolink.eu

IPP

16

1

1

www.i-p-p.eu

Know-Man

17

4

www.know-man.eu

MINI EUROPE

18

1

www.interreg-minieurope.com

MKW

18

1

1

1

1

www.makingknowledgework.eu

NANO4M

21

4

www.nano4m.eu

PERIA

18

1

www.peria.eu

PROSESC

21

1

www.prosesc.org

RAPIDE

19

1

1

2

1

www.rapidenetwork.eu

SCINNOPOLI

18

1

www.scinnopoli.eu

SMART+

19

1

www.smartplusinnovations.eu


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Project acronym

page

DE

DK

EE

FI

LT

LV

NO

SE

Website

Sub-theme: Entrepreneurship and SMEs

Project acronym

page

DE

DK

EE

LT

LV

NO

SE

Sub-theme: the Information society

B2N

15

1

www.business2nature.eu

13

1

www.castle-project.eu

DC

www.ceramicaproject.eu

DE-LAN

27

DLA

28

1

2

B3 Regions

Website

CASTLE CeRamICa

FI

www.b3regions.eu

www.digital-cities.eu

1

www.de-lan.eu

1

www.projectdla.eu

CITIES

13

2

www.eucreativeindustries.eu

CLUSNET

13

3

1

2

www.clusnet.eu

eCitizen II

28

1

1

2

www.baltic.org/projects/ecitizen_ii

CREA.RE

14

1

1

1

www.crea-re.eu

EVITA

27

1

1

2

www.evita-interreg4c.eu

Creative Growth

14

2

2

2

www.creative-growth.eu

I-SPEED

27

1

www.ispeed.eu

CREATIVE METROPOLES

14

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

www.creativemetropoles.eu

ICT-VN

27

1

www.ict-vn.eu

ENSPIRE EU

10

2

1

www.enspire.eu

IMMODI

29

1

1

1

www.interreg-immodi.net

ENTREDI

11

1

1

1

www.entredi.eu

OSEPA

29

1

1

1

www.osepa.eu

1

www.europroc.eu

PIKE

29

1

www.pike-project.eu

28

1

1

1

1

www.regional-telemedicine.eu

EuroPROC ICER

15

1

www.icerproject.eu

RTF

ICHNOS PLUS

11

1

www.ichnos-project.org

Sub-theme: Employment, human capital and education

IMAGEEN

12

1

1

www.imageen.eu

Brain Flow

26

1

1

1

1

www.brain-flow.eu

www.mitke.eu

CREATOR

24

1

1

www.creator7.eu

MITKE NEEBOR

12

2

3

www.neebor.eu

DART

22

3

2

www.dart-project.eu

ORGANZA

14

1

www.organzanetwork.eu

ESF6 CIA

24

1

www.esf6cia.eu

OSAIS

12

1

www.osais.eu

Gender4Growth

25

1

www.gender4growth.eu

PASE

15

1

www.pase-project.eu

IES

26

1

www.ies-employment.eu

POOLING4CLUSTERS

13

1

1

www.pooling4clusters.eu

PADIMA

22

2

1

www.padima.org

PROSPECTS

15

1

www.prospects-project.com

PEOPLE

26

1

www.peopleproject.eu

RobinWood Plus

15

1

www.robinwoodplus.eu

SolidarCity

26

1

www.solidarcity.eu

TOOL QUIZ

26

1

www.toolquiz.eu

RURALAND

15

1

1

www.ruraland.eu

SEE

14

1

1

2

www.seeproject.org

UNICREDS

26

3

3

www.unicreds.eu

YES

10

1

1

1

www.young-entrepreneurs.eu

WINNET 8

25

2

6

www.winnet8.eu


62

63

Project acronym

page

DE

DK

EE

FI

LT

LV

NO

SE

PRIORITY 2: Environment and risk prevention Sub-theme: Natural and technological risks; climate change CivPro

Website

Project acronym

COMMONS PERIURBAN REVERSE SURF-Nature

 

i4c.eu/showProject.html?ID=40338

CLIMACTREGIONS

42

1

1

www.climactregions.eu

DELTANET EFFMIS EUFOFINET F:ACTS! FLOOD-WISE FUTUREforest GRaBS MiSRaR PRoMPt REGIOCLIMA RSC

40 41 41 40 40 41 42 40

1     3 1          

  1                

            1   1  

                   

1   2     1        

        1          

                   

          1        

www.delta-net.eu i4c.eu/showProject.html?ID=40523 www.eufofinet.eu www.factsproject.eu www.floodwise.eu www.futureforest.eu www.grabs-eu.org www.misrar.nl www.prompt-interreg.eu www.regioclima.eu www.rscproject.org

1 2 1 2  

         

         

        1

  1      

        1

        1

        1

www.sharp-water.eu www.sigmaforwater.org www.suports.net www.sustain-eu.net www.watercore.eu www.waterways-forward.eu

     

1   1

www.c2cn.eu www.prewaste.eu www.sufalnet4.eu www.waste-2-energy.eu

www.citeair.eu

42

Sub-theme: Water management SHARP SIGMA for Water SuPorts SUSTAIN WATER CoRe WF

45 46 47 46 46 47

Sub-theme: Waste prevention and management C2CN 48       1     Pre-waste 48       1     SufalNet4EU 49 2           W2E 49             Sub-theme: Biodiversity and preservation of natural heritage; air quality CITEAIR II            

page

DE

DK

EE

FI

LT

LV

NO

SE

50

  2  

     

  1  

     

     

     

     

1    

www.commons-interreg.eu www.periurbanparks.eu www.reverse.aquitaine.eu www.surf-nature.eu

1           1           1 1 1      

    1                     1        

1                     1   1        

        2                 1        

  2                                

1 1 1 1 2   2 1 2 2 1 1     1 1    

www.bioenarea.eu www.caprice-project.info www.catch-mr.eu www.co2free-project.eu www.enercitee.eu i4c.eu/showProject.html?ID=40534 www.interreg4cflipper.eu www.geopower.ee/eng www.locareproject.eu www.mmove.eu www.more4nrg.eu www.pimms-capital.eu www.pimms-transfer-eu.org i4c.eu/showProject.html?ID=40476  www.portintegration.eu www.powerprogramme.eu www.renren-project.eu www.rets-project.eu www.sugarlogistics.eu

51

Website

Sub-theme: Energy and sustainable transport BIO-EN-AREA CAPRICE CATCH_MR CO2FREE EnercitEE EU 2020 going local FLIPPER GEO.POWER LoCaRe MMOVE MORE4NRG PIMMS CAPITAL PIMMS TRANSFER PLUS PORT INTEGRATION POWER RENREN RETS SUGAR

34 38 39 35 36 38 34 35 39 37 39 39 36 39 36 33 33

1 1   1 2       1   2 1 1 2   1 1  

              1                    

Sub-theme: Cultural heritage and landscape B-Team EUROSCAPES PRESERVE VITOUR LANDSCAPE Total

43 44 44 44

2 1 1

  1  

     

1    

1 2  

1    

1    

  2  

www.bteaminitiative.eu www.euroscapes-eu.org www.preserve.aer.eu www.vitour.org

80

16

20

40

19

14

11

66


64

INTERREG IVC national contact points

Denmark

Latvia

Ms Betina Hansen Ministry of Economic and Business Affairs bbh@ebst.dk +45 3546 6405

Ms Jūlija Jakovļeva Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development julija.jakovleva@varam.gov.lv Tel: + 371 6777 0416

Estonia

Lithuania

Ms Liina Kirsipuu Ministry of the Interior liina.kirsipuu@siseministeerium.ee +372 612 5198

Ms Diana Zaliecke Ministry of the Interior diana.zaliecke@vrm.lt Tel: +370 85 271 83 88

Finland

Sweden

Mr Petri Haapalainen Ministry of Employment and the Economy petri.haapalainen@tem.fi +358 10 60 64922

Ms Maria Eriksson Swedish Ministry for Enterprise, Energy and Communications maria.eriksson@enterprise.ministry.se Tel: +46 8203127

Ecoprint

Germany

Norway

ecoprint@ecoprint.ee

Germany has not appointed a National Contact Point. Please contact INTERREG IVC Information Point North for advice. For more specific information on the federal state level, please contact the regional contact points. A list of regional contacts is available in the ’Contacts’ section of.

Mr Jon Halvard Eide Vest-Agder County Council jon.halvard.eide@vaf.no Tel: +47 38074732

Credits This brochure was produced and published by the Information Point North of the INTERREG IVC programme 2007-2013. We would like to thank all the project partners who helped to produce this brochure and provided their input. It is permitted to print or download extracts from this brochure for public use citing the data source. No content must be used for any commercial purposes.

Photo credits: Hetti Meltsas: cover, p. 35, 41, 48 Marit Lani: p. 2-20, 27-34, 38, 43-46, 51-54 Joel Kook: p. 21, 42, 47, 50 DART project: p. 22, 23

Design and printing:

Printed in February 2011

If you are interested in being a partner of an INTERREG IVC project or wish to learn more about the approved projects in your country, please contact the National Contact Point in your country. The full list of National Contact Points, also for all other countries, is available in the ’Contacts’ section of www.interreg4c.eu.


For information about the programme and the approved projects, please contact the Information Point in your area. Information Point North (Rostock, Germany) Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Sweden and Norway IP-North@interreg4c.eu Tel: +49 381 45484 5292

Information Point South (Valencia, Spain) Cyprus, Greece, Italy, Malta, Portugal and Spain IP-South@interreg4c.eu Tel: +34 96 192 26 18

Information Point East (Katowice, Poland) Austria, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia IP-East@interreg4c.eu Tel: +48 32 205 32 30

Information Point West (Lille, France) Belgium, France, Ireland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, United Kingdom and Switzerland IP-West@interreg4c.eu Tel: +33 328 144 104

INTERREG IVC Joint Technical Secretariat info@interreg4c.eu Tel: +33 328 144 100 www.interreg4c.eu

Profile for Interreg Europe

Better Policies through Interregional Cooperation: Experience and Good Practice from North Area  

Better Policies through Interregional Cooperation: Experience and Good Practice from North Area  

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