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Year 1 - issue 2 - April 2010


IN THIS ISSUE: Services Innovation Page 2 | WHAT IS HOT IN INNOVATION POLICY TODAY Addressing the grand challenges for innovation support in Europe Page 4 | STORY IN FOCUS A change of paradigm, a change of mindset Page 6 | INNOVATION IN FIGURES Innovating in a time of crisis Page 7 | NETWORK NEWS Page 8 | NEWS AND EVENTS

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Dear reader,

Interest towards services innovation has been “I am delighted and privileged to be invited to chair the Expert Panel. The hard statistics testify the importance of this increasing in line with its growing economic weight. In agenda for all Member States and, having developed 2007, services represented 69.2% of total employment and national policy here in UK , it is clear to me that the EU 71.6% of the gross value-added generated by EU27. They dimension is critical. I see it as the role of this Panel to have demonstrated to be the driving force behind help define and articulate that role so that the employment creation and value added expansion over the last Commission and Member States can develop decade. Substantial shares of fast growing companies represent policies which are coherent and complementary service providers. At the same time, policies in support of services and thereby create the conditions for a dynamic innovation have remained relatively underdeveloped in many European (service) economy, consistent with Member States and regions. So, it is time that services innovation gets President Barroso's 2020 strategy.” more policy attention and that more effort is undertaken to boost it from an institutional perspective. Allan Mayo Department for Business, Innovation and Skills; UK.

To respond to this challenge DG Enterprise and Industry has established an Expert Panel on Services Innovation in the EU. It will assess the policy rationale behind successful initiatives and suggest at which level and by what measures to shape new and innovative service markets and sectors in Europe. The 20 members of the expert panel, representing public bodies, business organisations and private companies, kick-started their work in Brussels at the end of March with a discussion on the potential role of services innovation in addressing societal challenges, and meeting the goals of the Europe 2020 Strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth.

The panel will convene every quarter until the end of 2010 and conclude with a public event in January 2011. Each meeting will be dedicated to a specific theme, involving a mini-study and organised in a different location across Europe. The first workshop identified a set of innovative services, which have an impact for smart, inclusive and sustainable growth. Over the next three workshops these services innovations will be reviewed in detail, focusing on the barriers and drivers for services innovation, and exploring the role for European, national and regional support policies and initiatives.



Addressing the grand challenges

for innovation support

in Europe


Antonio Tajani, Vice-President of the European Commission

This 3rd Annual Partnering Event of PRO INNO Europe® brought the newly launched INNO-Nets and INNO-Actions together for the first time. The partnering event allowed them to strengthen relationships, to sharpen their project agendas through plenary discussions and to develop joint ideas for the upcoming Research and Innovation Plan as part of the Europe 2020 Strategy.

“In the course of my term of office I will be launching a new industrial policy. I am going to stress first of all support for innovation. Each business, each industry has its own requirements and we have to create the right framework so that each company can innovate.” On behalf of the host organisation, Mrs Charlotte Brogren (Director General of VINNOVA, the Swedish “The principle ‘think small first’ must be Government Agency for Innovation Systems) sketched an followed in everything we do. We must outlook on the world in 2025 and pointed out the implement the Small Businesses Act corresponding Grand Challenges for innovation support in through targeted actions. In this context, Europe. In her view: “times of change need to be understood in my view, the experiences we have in correctly to be able to take advantage of the opportunities, how innovation industrial clusters and poles of and innovation support can leverage these opportunities and how it can competitiveness are those we have to enable societal actors to valorise them.” She also argued that it is time to draw on in order to enhance overcome European under-investment in research and knowledge innovation in SMEs.” development that have long dominated the rationale for government interventions. We now need a more innovation-led policy landscape, where we recognize that investment in innovation and in innovation support is crucial for Máire Geoghegan-Quinn, creating jobs and addressing societal changes. This should guide the path to a Europe’s first innovation new policy landscape in Europe. Commissioner “The European Union must become a true Innovation Union. […] A true Innovation Union would support markets that are open to newcomers and incentivise investment.” “Our

Europe is a maker and shaper of change. At heart, our Union is an Innovation Union. Integration is innovation.”

Mr Reinhard Büscher, Head of the Innovation Support Unit of DG Enterprise and Industry, emphasized that the new INNO-Nets and INNO-Actions are supposed to generate ideas and to be opinion leaders for further improvement of innovation support policy in Europe. In addition, they are expected to function as policy tools in themselves: “They should act as living labs and find solutions to problems and lead the way to more effective forms of innovation support in Europe and their roll-out across Member States and regions.” Mr Jari Kuusisto from SC Research (Finland) stated that “although the scope of innovation policy has already expanded, there is still ample room for further evolution in Europe to realize the full potential of ‘new’ forms of innovation, like services innovation, consumption innovation, organisational or business model innovation’. He expressed the need for innovation support policies to embrace the concept of user-driven innovation much stronger. In his view, individual users, user groups and user communities should be placed much more at the forefront of policy development as a source of ideas to unlock innovations. In that regard, recent experiences with innovation platforms (such as the one on eco-innovation) have generated good results in terms of converging services, methods and technologies.


In parallel to the plenary sessions on 25 and 26 November 2009, the audience was invited to note down further ideas and recommendations for the different INNO-Nets and INNO-Actions and this led to a rich harvest of post-it suggestions, which were clustered on a whiteboard.

Read more about the 3rd PRO INNO Europe® partnering event at: ge/stockholm-november-2009 As a follow up to the Stockholm event, further discussions on performance and impact measurement of the new INNO-Nets were held on 19 January 2010. These discussions were organised as it is deemed important to review at an early stage in the lifecycle of projects; what output and possible leverage effects can stem from such projects and which would be appropriate impact and performance indicators for monitoring the outcome of the projects. For more information on the outcomes of the panel discussions on performance and impact measurement of INNO-Nets, see: de/15786

The EPISIS consortium, represented by Mrs Anna-Maija Rautiainen of TEKES, added that there is a particular need to complement the technological approach of the Framework Programmes with a more multidisciplinary approach addressing all aspects of innovation. In her view, “human competences and skills, organisational and workplace development are among the themes which deserve more attention.” For this to happen, she suggested to put in place more robust knowledge sharing mechanisms between PRO INNO Europe® and Europe INNOVA projects, on the one hand, and FP projects, on the other, with a view to help leverage synergies between different EU instruments supporting innovation. On behalf of the TACTICS consortium, Mr Michel Ganoote of OSEO voiced that “Europe should further develop those clusters with global excellence potential, instead of adding new clusters to the European map.” Now is the time to take stock and move forward with the best in class. World class excellence, in his view, can stem from clusters’ abilities to provide benefits to member SMEs in areas such as RDI activities, public procurement, export/internationalisation and building technological/services platforms. To achieve this, horizontal activities across clusters (e.g. in education and training, IP support, start-up incubation, financing, as well as international cooperation) and branding of clusters are important. The coordinator of the INNO-Partnering Forum, Mrs Jenni Nordborg of VINNOVA, stated that the urgency for innovation support providers is to better match their services with SMEs’ expectations. In order to satisfy SMEs, their support should be more targeted, customized and make use of different channels. In her view, “innovation agencies play a crucial role here and ongoing partnerships between them are necessary to accelerate the take-up of the most advanced support mechanisms in Europe.” The INNO-Partnering Forum provides a stepping stone to this policy learning process. Furthermore, she stressed that to make public support for innovation more effective, SMEs need to have easy access to the support instruments that are put at their disposal. On behalf of the INNO-Action “IF …” (Innovation Festival), Ms Marija Popovic from the European Design Centre in the Netherlands and Mr Henrique Cayette of the Portuguese Design Centre stressed the importance of inclusive and communicative events to ensure a wide outreach to ALL stakeholders (public and private, adults, young people and children, professionals and students, …). Inclusiveness should also enable links between science, business and art and appeal to the best talents, investors and innovation communities. Another key issue to be promoted would be to show an open concept of innovation. Transmitting that innovation is not only about research and technology, but also about design and ideas.



A change of paradigm, a change of mindset

BY PROMOTING THE DEVELOPMENT OF SERVICES INNOVATION THROUGH TRANSNATIONAL COOPERATION BETWEEN POLICY MAKERS AND INNOVATION AGENCIES, THE EPISIS INNO-NET AIMS TO OVERCOME THE GAP IN THE POLICY ‘MARKET’ IN SUPPORT OF SERVICES INNOVATION. SIMILARLY, IT TAKES THE USER DRIVEN CHARACTERISTICS OF SERVICES INNOVATION AS A BASIS TO UNDERPIN ITS OVERALL APPROACH AND OBJECTIVES. The innovation paradigm has changed fundamentally raising the It counts with representatives from the following importance of services innovation to a new level. There is an organisations: FFG (Austrian Research Promoting ongoing shift away from pure technological and product Agency), the Ministry of Employment and the Economy innovation, which is largely dependent upon R&D (Finland), OSEO (France), the Ministry of Education and expenditures, towards user-centric and network models of Research (Germany), Enterprise Ireland, SenterNovem (the innovation. These new forms of innovation tend to focus Netherlands), the Ministry of Trade and Industry (Norway), the on the composition of complex service systems and Public Agency for Technology of the Republic of Slovenia, the co-creation which are required to meet rising Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism (Spain) and the Ministry of customer demands and expectations along with Industry, Energy and Communications (Sweden). speed of delivery. Its mandate is to identify emerging needs in support of services innovation and to give recommendations for better support mechanisms. “This is a huge change, not only for the Together, the EPISIS core executive consortium and the Think Tank, which company, but also for us as policy makers. It involves external experts, constitute an open platform for policy and strategy does not help if we only try to make the new discussions on services innovation and for testing new approaches in support policy. We also need to work at strategic of services innovation. “Open platform” refers to the objective to deliver level, to change the mindset. And thirdly, practices and insights that go beyond the project level and which can be taken there is also the operational level”, sums up both at European level and across Europe and its regions. up Tiina Tanninen-Ahonen, Director for It also stands for the cooperative and inclusive atmosphere in which the project services innovation at the Finnish unfolds: in close contact with all relevant stakeholders, including the innovation agency TEKES, which is newly established Expert Panel on Services Innovation in the leading the EPISIS project. EU. Consequently, it is among others foreseen that the Links with EPISIS work shall focus on developing a longer To foster a strategic approach to the cluster policy term strategy for services and services growth of services innovation, EPISIS initiatives. The TACTICS innovation development. has established a European Services It will also address the issue of INNO-Net, working on the Innovation Think Tank. adapting services innovation theme of clusters, has launched policies to a wider socio-economic discussions with EPISIS on developing environment.

synergies between the cluster and services led innovation communities. Clear evidence of the relevance of this initiative is provided by the results of the European Cluster Alliance member survey, to be published soon. This survey highlights the strong interest in exploring new areas, such as services and user-led innovation that contribute to the growth of world class clusters.


Thinking ahead Blending policy


and practice


WHAT IS YOUR SPECIFIC ROLE AS A MEMBER OF THE THINK TANK? To share OSEO experience from delivering voucher support to French SMEs as part of the KIS-PIMS project under Europe INNOVA, designing and implementing new funding schemes for knowledge intensive services. It focuses on SMEs in clusters, which is one of our strengths – les pôles de compétitivité. OSEO is leading the TACTICS INNO-Net for better European clusters. We will seek synergies within EPISIS and TACTICS for better using the cluster approach to support innovative SMEs; including in services.

Innovation agencies in Europe now clearly understand that with the rise of China, India and Brazil, the only way for Europe to grow is to grow in services. This is the focus of the EPISIS Think Tank over the next three years.

EPISIS contribution to European service innovation

We are already active in this field. OSEO is managing grants for small and medium-sized companies implementing ICT in services innovation since 2000. We want to go beyond this, to enlarge the scope of our support, to develop further our strategy and programmes. The best examples for this are the countries of northern Europe, especially those that are partners in the EPISIS project. The fact that EPISIS is focusing on non-technological innovation is very important for us, because in France and in southern Europe we still tend to be too technology oriented. However, with OSEO’s national and international experience, I am convinced that this will be a win-win process. EPISIS aims to develop policy and measures at EU level for the benefit of all countries, including France.


Policy recommendations to support service innovations European Service Innovation Think Tank Task Force 1: Service Typology

Task Force 3: Integration of services and technologies

Task Force 2: Impact analysis and indicators

Task Force 5: Internationalization of high-growth service companies

Task Force 7: Theme open

Task Force 6: Theme open

Task Force 4: New skills & competences

Annual conferences on service innovation

New forms of support for open and user-driven innovation management

Improving knowledge transfer and service innovation


Strengthening the policy framework for innovation in services





Success factors EPISIS objectives: The main policy level objective is to advance broad-based innovation policy approach

The main strategic level objective to support and strengthen a mind-set change

The main operational level objective is to encourage the development of policy tools and measures

EPISIS Think Tank - work in perspective

For further information: Anna Maija Rautiainen, EPISIS Project Coordinator



Innovating in a time of crisis THE LATEST, 2009 EDITION OF THE EUROPEAN INNOVATION SCOREBOARD AND THE 2009 INNOBAROMETER SURVEY SHOW THAT FIRMS WHICH PURSUE BROADER STRATEGIES, INCLUDING USER INNOVATION AND OPEN INNOVATION, ARE MORE RESILIENT TO THE CURRENT ECONOMIC DOWNTURN. THERE IS ALSO A STRONG MESSAGE TO POLICY MAKERS, CONFIRMING THE POSITIVE EFFECT OF PUBLIC FINANCIAL SUPPORT ON THE COMPANIES’ OWN INNOVATION EXPENDITURE. The EU27 has been improving its overall innovation performance in 2008, with moderate innovators and the catching-up countries growing at a faster rate than the innovation leaders and innovation followers (see the graph). However, the current economic crisis may be hampering this progress. At country level, early indicators show that the worst hit are Member States with lower levels of innovation performance; this includes most of the new Member States, which had been catching up fast with the innovation leaders from the north of Europe. This means that the convergence process among the EU27 witnessed over recent years may now be reversed due to the severity of the crisis.

innovation performance (SII 2009)

At a global level the EU is no longer catching up with the US in innovation performance, although it maintains a clear lead over the emerging economies of Brazil, Russia, India and China. As regards the exports of knowledge-intensive services, the EU is increasing its lead over the US, but it is outperformed by Brazil, while China is growing five times faster than the EU.

The role of user innovation More than half of innovating firms in Europe involve users in innovation activities. User innovation is more or less evenly spread across industrial sectors and across countries. At the same time large firms are more likely to be involved in all forms of user innovation than small companies. For example, 39% of all innovative firms with more than 500 employees are user process innovators, and in the case of user involvers this rises to 61%. Companies engaged in user innovation can be classed as “super-innovators”. Such firms are more likely to introduce new products, processes or services, to perform R&D and apply for patents. Furthermore, innovative firms, and amongst them those active in services innovation, are less likely to cut back on innovation expenditures in critical times. The 2009 Innobarometer survey among EU managers showed that EU27’s most innovative firms may be relatively less affected by the economic crisis. This is particularly true for companies, where innovative products and services account for a larger share of sales and for those which involve users and apply knowledge management systems. The survey also showed that there is casual interaction between internationalisation and innovation and that this leads to a cumulative process in which the innovation and internationalisation elements affect each other in a virtuous or vicious circle. The interrelationship between the two suggests that public authorities should consider links between their innovation support to enterprises and support to internationalisation. Otherwise the effect of the economic stimulus packages, which have increased public procurements, will have a limited effect on innovation – a key for economic revival.

Average annual growth in innovation performance



For further information:




LEVERAGING PROJECT IMPACTS THROUGH PERFORMANCE MONITORING Performance measurement of projects is often viewed as a cumbersome and difficult task.

The first in a series of 10 short videos featuring PRO INNO Europe® (PIE) actions, as they come on stream, is now on view. It tells the story of IP4Inno, which developed a portfolio for trainers used extensively to help thousands of SMEs to understand the strategic importance of intellectual property protection and specifically how to use the patenting process for commercial advantage. Featuring in the film are the coordinator, the European Patent Office, and coaches and entrepreneurs from one of the 18 EU consortium members, who acted as “missionaries”, meeting the challenging needs of small companies. The film tells the story of which training modules were most in demand and the Return On Investments on using them. The project is now over, but the roll-out of the toolkit continues… Watch this and other stories, coming up next are CLUNET and BSR-Innonet. Innovation PIE will keep you up-to-date.

On 19 January a group of INNO-Net partners, external experts, members of the INNO-Learning Platform as well as Commission and Member State representatives from the CIP/EIP Management Committee met in Brussels to exchange opinions and ideas on this theme. A shared viewpoint was that performance and impact measurement can in fact support project management if a pragmatic approach is adopted. “Impact and performance indicators should be treated as focusing and reporting devices, not as measuring devices as such” said Mario Calderini of the Italian National Agency for Innovation. In that regard, the participants agreed on the fact that performance and impact measurement should not be treated in isolation, but as a derivation of standard project management duties and targets. Also, it should form an integral part of learning-based project management and assist project coordinators to state their claims. “Impact measurement should help project owners to give accountability for their (f)acts to stakeholders” Lynne Taylor, Innoveras, external expert for cluster projects. Consequently, performance indicators should be derived from the objectives a project sets out to reach in the first place. Hence, performance measurement is a means for a project to stay focused and to gather evidence on results that allow it to communicate to its stakeholders and wider audience in a meaningful and underpinned manner. Performance monitoring and impact assessment activities can thus serve as a very helpful reporting tool. To avoid stepping into the “analysis paralysis trap” with too many individual performance indicators, one can opt to construct and make evaluations on the basis of compound parameters, as in multi-criteria analysis or composite indicator analysis. “Composite indicators are a very promising tool to synthesize the overall impact of a project” Reinhard Büscher, Head of Unit Support for Innovation, DG Enterprise and Industry. It was also concluded that, to measure and expose what matters, it is important to clearly delineate the audiences of interest to be addressed and what are relevant performance and impact indicators for them. That way, projects will be better able to connect, and effectively reach out to their target audiences. “The suggestions for project monitoring and evaluation on behalf of the external experts are very applicable and well-thought through and will allow the TACTICS INNO-Net to set up workable impact measurement practices” Michel Ganoote, OSEO Innovation France. For further insights on the INNO-Nets reviewed and the outcomes of the panel discussion, have a look at the EPISIS-, TACTICS- and INNO-Partnering Forum-2009 Deliverables under:

PRO INNO EUROPE® WEBSITE RECENTLY REFRESHED The PRO INNO Europe® initiative now has a fully renovated website, both in content and in form. It was launched in February 2010. Already online since 2006, the PRO INNO Europe® website has been a successful and highly visited website since its creation. It is an important meeting place and information source for stakeholders in policy support for innovation, and it has contributed substantially to making PRO INNO Europe® a key European reference for innovation policy analysis and policy cooperation. The renewed website will continue to support this mission and try to broaden and enhance the outreach to the PRO INNO Europe® community.

Check it out for yourself at:



f tter o ew sle pe® The NINNO Euro PRO

PRO INNO Europe® is an initiative of the European Commission’s Directorate General Enterprise and Industry. It aims to become the focal point for innovation policy analysis and policy cooperation in Europe, with the view to learning from the best and contributing to the development of new and better innovation policies in Europe. The newsletter of the PRO INNO Europe® initiative © European Commission. Reproduction is authorised, provided the source is acknowledged. EDITORIAL CONTACT AND TO SUBSCRIBE: PUBLISHED BY: INNOVATION PIE and all other elements of the Promotion of PRO INNO Europe® Results project are performed by a consortium of companies headed by INNOVA Europe sàrl (Luxembourg). LEGAL NOTICE: This publication has been produced as part of the PRO INNO Europe® initiative. The views expressed in this report, as well as the information included in it, do not necessarily reflect the opinion or position of the European Commission and in no way commit the institution. This newsletter is financed under the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (CIP) which aims to encourage the competitiveness of European enterprises. Printed on responsible forest management paper with vegetable-based ink.

SERVICES INNOVATION AS A CATALYST FOR THE EUROPE 2020 STRATEGY Copenhagen, Denmark - 14-16 June 2010 This is a joint event of the EPISIS INNO-Net and the Europe INNOVA Annual Partnering Event. On day 1 high-level policy makers from the EPISIS partner organisations will set out their national services innovation strategies and the conference will also debate the role of services innovation in tackling societal challenges. Day 2 will take a more practical view discussing, in the framework of Europe INNOVA, which new business support services are needed to promote services innovation in support of the Europe 2020 Strategy. The event will bring together some 200 innovation stakeholders, notably national and regional policy makers, representatives of service industries and innovation support providers. For more information, please consult:

INNOVATION FESTIVALS IN MILAN AND KORTRIJK October will be the month for two more Innovation Festivals, organised by the IF INNO-Action. The first, taking place during the week of 5-10 October in Milan, Italy, will take further the established tradition of the Innovation Circus launched in 2007, which gathered several thousand people in 2009. This year the topic is “Life-improving innovation”. Kortrijk, which took part in the European Design Management Award scheme of the ADMIRE INNO-Action, now has the ambition to become the European innovation capital during the forthcoming Belgian EU Presidency. The IF festival in Kortrijk will run from 8 to 24 October under the theme “Design for sustainable innovation”. For more info:

EUROPEAN CHALLENGES FOR INNOVATION The “European Challenges for Innovation” conference, jointly organised by the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation and the European Commission, will take place in Bilbao, Spain, on 27-28 April. The conference will be an opportunity to exchange views on the way forward for unlocking Europe’s innovation potential, organising the debate alongside the five axis of the “pentagon of innovation”: financing, markets, regions, people and governance, and through examples of good practices from across Europe. For more info, visit:

VINNOVA CONFERENCE DURING THE EUROPEAN SME WEEK Within the framework of the European SME Week 2010, coordinated by the DG Enterprise and Industry, VINNOVA, coordinator of the INNO-Partnering Forum, will organise jointly with the Swedish Agency for Economic and Regional Growth and the Swedish Federation of Business Owners a conference “How can the EU support my company”. The event, taking place on 31 May, will provide practical information to Swedish Small and Medium Enterprises on EU programmes and on the activities carried out by existing agencies and organisations offering SME support. For more info, visit:

A NEW HANDBOOK ON INNOVATION-BASED INCUBATORS The European Commission together with the European Business and Innovation Network has published a new guide for innovation-based incubators working at the interface between innovation and entrepreneurship. The handbook, launched during the Week of Innovative Regions in Europe, which took place in March in Granada, not only provides several case studies but also sets out a number of valuable tips, including advice on strategic aims, networking and evaluation. Read more at:


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