The vision and primary objective of our S3 is to transform traditional and mature industries into emerging ones. To achieve this as a region, we need to analyse trends in how markets are reacting to new societal challenges and then build competitive advantages to respond.
As a first step in formulating our strategy we involved a wide array of actors in the process, not only the most relevant technological clusters, but also the needs and opinions of the civil society at large – the fourth element of the quadruple helix which we overlooked in the past. Through this we also raised awareness among many stakeholders of the challenge presented by smart specialisation.
Next we launched an Entrepreneurial Discovery Process (EDP) through both bottom up and top down approaches: Desk based research collects statistical data on high-growth companies is support by a collaborative platform of innovation actors. This aims to create an enabling environment for innovation, encouraging discussion and nurturing ideas for action, which we see as a meeting place of demand and supply for innovation in Lombardy.
We hope that these efforts help our economic actors to get closer to the needs of the end user, namely the citizen, since they represent market opportunities. In a sort of 'ideal world' the citizens should administer public funds, deciding on which enterprises of the future can best improve their quality of life. In summary, regional economic transformation to address societal challenges is both the means and the end of our strategy, and we intend to make a difference...now!