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Innovation Express call for transnational clusters in BSR

Innovation Express is a joint call for proposals implemented within the framework of the BSR Stars programme – a flagship of the EU Strategy for...

New call to access research services in BSR

The "Baltic TRAM" BSR programme project has launched a call for companies to get free access to state-of-the-art analytical research facilities...

Nearly 117 BSR cooperation projects will receive support from Interreg Programmes

New transnational projects have been granted with funding from Interreg programmes. The support from Interreg Baltic Sea Region Programmes and...

Interreg Baltic Sea Region Programme approved 4 projects on smart specialisation

In the second call of the Interreg Baltic Sea Region 39 projects were approved for funding out of 71 project applications in the thematic fields...

Latest registration

The latest region to register to the S3 Platform is Södermanland (SE).
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Baltic Sea Region Baltic Sea Region

What is the S3 cooperation in BSR?

The EU Baltic Sea region (BSR) counts 85 million inhabitants (17 percent of EU population) and eight countries (Sweden, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland) which share common features and challenges. In addition Norway, Belarus and Russia are welcome in the collaboration.

The EU Strategy for Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR) and its Action plan is an integrated framework for identifying common needs and matching them with available resources through the coordination of appropriate policies to tackle common challenges. The strategy initiates initiatives in different sectors and promotes cooperation between stakeholders in the BSR.

Smart specialisation (S3) is a new building block for collaboration in innovation in the BSR, which can stimulate the constructive use of regional diversity to build globally-leading innovation hubs in common or complementary S3 areas.

What is the rationale?

The EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region builds on long traditions of collaboration and established cooperation in the field of innovation among the countries. Various trans-national R&I collaborations and mechanisms for co-financing of activities have been tested within this framework. Nonetheless, to accelerate trans-national collaboration, institutions need to align their efforts more effectively to achieve synergies. With the S3 approach regions can explore competitive advantages at the macro-regional level making the best use of available assets, competences and funds with an ambition to become internationally competitive and plugged in to global value chains to strengthen their global position and visibility.


Macro-regional strategies aim at bringing together stakeholders from different policy levels and sectors. It's a platform which gathers a broad range of actors: national and regional stakeholders, sectorial ministries, OP managing authorities, academia, research, non-governmental organisations, etc. in an organised way to tackle common challenges. Thus the potential to mobilise relevant stakeholders and create strategic innovation partnerships at macro-regional level is higher.

A number of networks exist in the Baltic Sea Region fostering cooperation in relevant thematic areas such as:

The Council of the Baltic Sea States (CBSS), is a political forum for regional inter-governmental cooperation.

The Baltic Sea States Subregional Cooperation (BSSSC) brings together regional authorities from all the countries in the Baltic Sea Region.

The Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions (CPMR) and its Baltic Sea Commission bring together the peripheral maritime regions of the BSR.

The Union of the Baltic Cities (UBC) is a network for municipalities and cities in the Baltic Sea Region.

The Baltic Development Forum (BDF) is a high-level network for representatives from business, public sector, civil servants and politicians and academia in the Baltic Sea Region providing platforms for collaboration.

The Nordic Council of Ministers is the official body for Nordic intergovernmental co-operation, which is an important partner for BSR cooperation with a Nordic dimension

What facilitates the S3 cooperation in BSR?

The S3 Platform facilitates work on synergies in S3 within the BSR. The S3P works closely with the Policy Area Innovation (PA INNO) of the EUSBSR, the Baltic Sea Region Programme, DG Regio and BSR countries and regions towards increased innovation and growth through S3 in the macro region. Several joint meetings and events have taken place to share knowledge and exploit the synergies and to match-make stakeholders around similar S3 priorities which gave impetus to new collaborative initiatives around.

The BSR Programme is an important instrument contributing to the implementation of the EUSBSR.  The programme has already approved some projects to enhance growth opportunities based on cooperation applying the S3 approach such as: Smart blue regions; EmpInno; BSR Stars S3

The network of European Regional Development Funds (ERDF) Managing Authorities work on aligning ERDF structural fund programmes in order to initiate project collaboration supporting the implementation of the EUSBSR . They have initiated a pilot project exploring how to jointly fund a collaborative activity in S3 in clean technologies.

Events Events

8th Annual Forum of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region

The 8th Annual Forum of the EUSBSR will held on 13 - 14 June, 2017 in Berlin. The theme of the 8th Annual Forum is connectivity which highlights the...

Smart Grid Challenges and Opportunities in the Baltic Region.

This event is framed within activities of the Smart Specialisation Platform on Energy (S3PEnergy) and is oriented to facilitate cooperation among regions...


An information and brokerage event related to smart specialisation and blue growth, organised by the Interreg funded project Smart Blue Regions and the...

Smart Specialisation Strategies in the BSR perspective

The Baltic Sea Commission and Region Gävleborg, in cooperation with Policy Area Innovation of the European Union Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region is...

Connecting RIS3 in Baltic Sea Region

In the framework of the 6th EUSBSR annual forum in Jurmala (LV) the S3P together with EUSBSR Priority Area Innovation and Skåne region co-organised the...
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Publications Publications

National innovation and smart specialisation governance in the Baltic Sea region

04/2017 Artūras Mickus, Inga Jēkabsone, Lauma Muižniece, Ninetta Chaniotou, Piotr Szmigielski
BSR Policy Briefing 4/2017 provides a comprehensive outlook on the national innovation and smart specialisation governance in six countries of the Baltic...

How Outward-looking is Smart Specialisation? - Results from a survey on inter-regional collaboration in Smart Specialisation Strategies (RIS3)

S3 Policy Brief Series No. 16/2016 Jens Sörvik, Inger Midtkandal, Chiara Marzocchi and Elvira Uyarra

Inter-Regional Collaboration in Research and Innovation Strategies for Smart Specialisation (RIS3)

06/2014 Elvira Uyarra, Jens Sörvik and Inger Midtkandal
The objective of this Smart Specialisation Platform Working Paper is to examine the role of inter-regional collaboration in national or regional Research...

Related Documents Related Documents

National innovation and smart specialisation governance in the Baltic Sea region

04/2017 Artūras Mickus, Inga Jēkabsone, Lauma Muižniece, Ninetta Chaniotou, Piotr Szmigielski
BSR Policy Briefing 4/2017 provides a comprehensive outlook on the national innovation and smart specialisation governance in six countries of the Baltic...

Added value of the macro-regional strategies for projects and programmes

Interact Programme
Macro-regional strategies can be driving forces for change if the right momentum is achieved. Macro-regional strategies are coordination and cooperation...