Smart specialisation: linking global challenges to local implementation

  • 25 Jan 2021 to 29 Jan 2021
  • Online event

The European Regional Science Association in collaboration with the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission (Seville) are pleased to work together for the organization of the 3rd edition of the ERSA Winter School.

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Agenda and Presentations

Agenda can be accessed here.

Practical Information

25 Jan 2021 to 29 Jan 2021
Online event


The world’s megatrends offer risks and opportunities impacting local and regional policy making. Solutions to challenges that are linked to environment, economy, society and health are to be aligned with the European Green Deal priorities and with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals calling for change in local and regional policy making. Also, such challenges have differentiated local impact, requiring diverse responses for current and future needs of local communities.

Smart Specialisation (S3) is a place-based EU policy in its 7th year of implementation offering a methodology along which regions and Member States of the European Union (EU) have been developing and implementing their S3 strategy leading to a limited number of clearly defined research and innovation priorities. S3 is an evolving approach incorporating evidence on what worked and what did not work, also attracting attention outside of the EU; impacting – among other areas – governance and institutional systems, stakeholder involvement, leadership, or cross-border synergies across investments. Given the evolving nature of S3, it offers a unique entry point on how territorial policies can provide solutions to grand challenges in a way that lead to transformation of places that become more resilient in adapting to social, economic and environmental change.


The ERSA - JRC Winter School 2021 seeks to address the interaction between empirical, theoretical and policy analysis within the following topics, which include (but are not limited to):

  • Data analyses
  • Applied analysis
  • Quantitative methodology
along with the following lines:
  • Place based innovation for sustainability – the Green Deal / Grand challenges
  • Smart specialisation for sustainable development goals
  • Lessons learned on Entrepreneurial Discovery Process and COVID19 induced changes on EDP processes
  • Evidence on the implementation of Smart Specialisation 
  • Connecting Innovation Ecosystems to enhance growth 
  • Local and regional leadership addressing grand challenges 
  • Tools and Data for Smart Specialisation 
  • Monitoring and Evaluation – a tool ensuring effectiveness of S3 implementation