Sustainability for environment, society and economy – The "Pescara Charter", a regional model
In November 2016, the Abruzzo Regional Council published the “Pescara Charter”, a pact between Abruzzo Regional Council and enterprise in order to adopt sustainable industry practices. "Sustainable industry" has been officially identified by the Abruzzo Regional Council as the main economic and social driver of regional development, complying with of the following areas of sustainability:
- Environmental: representing the capability to preserve over time the three functions of the environment: supply of resources, receiver of waste, direct source of utility;
- Economic: representing the capability of an economic system to generate enduring growth of economic indicators, in particular earnings and employment;
- Social: representing the capability to guarantee conditions of human welfare (safety, health, education) distributed equally by class and gender, and to promote social inclusion.
The Pescara Charter is the link between the previous industrial policy actions and aims to develop existing local manufacturing activities (or others that could be hopefully attracted), by leveraging the ability to integrate/develop new knowledge/new technologies, maximizing synergy among economic, social and environmental sectors. The main objective of the presenting "tool" is complete the processes started at regional level with the Smart Specialisation Strategy, trying to promote the creation of a welcoming and inclusive "social" climate for research and business, and supporting development of wisdom (knowledge) and skills (know-how) for sustainable industry at all levels of learning. The landscape of the region is gradually evolving towards the European reference of achieving an intelligent, sustainable and inclusive growth.
The "Pescara Charter" is the result the Entrepreneurial discovery process (EDP) processes, when stakeholders (involved at a very early stage) explained how sustainability was not just something related to rules to comply with, but actually a "market choice" made to be more (or remain) competitive in international quality products benchmarking. The added value of the tool is the method shared with the stakeholders in order to achieve a more efficient use of structural funds and increased synergies among EU, national and regional policies.
The Charter offers to applicant companies a “region-enterprise partnership agreement” that provides advantages in terms of:
- simplified procedures (level of bureaucracy is reduced to the minimum, as are local administrative costs)
- reduction of administrative and local taxes (regional taxes related to production activities are as low as possible);
- supporting legislation (dedicated legislative initiatives for simplification are on the way);
There is a real attempt to drive the change started with Abruzzo’s RIS3 for a circular economy regional model, with (i) open (every enterprise in the region can try be became a partner); (ii) easy (the related web platform is managed directly by the regional offices) (iii) original and; (iv) free instruments (no additional resources are need) to support and promote innovative and sustainable SMEs, using the given EU funds.