Smart Specialisation with Smart Clusters

March 14th 2019, Venice

Innosquare Clusters (formerly PST-FR) has set up a series of international conferences on clusters under the motto "Clusters as drivers of competitiveness". After the great success of the first three editions, this fourth edition was organized as the final conference of the Interreg VB project “Smart Specialisation Strategies to build an Innovation Model for Alp Clusters” (S3-4AlpClusters).

For the last two years, the S3-4AlpClusters project has put the interplay between S3 and clusters at the core of its conceptual and practical study of S3-implementation across the Alpine Space. While overlaps between the two concepts are evident and cluster initiatives are acknowledged as tools in the context of S3, practical implementation of S3 with cluster initiatives is found to be far from trivial.

The final project conference held in Venice on March 14th was conceived as a platform for cluster managers and policy makers to discover innovative new processes and tools in current and future S3-implementation with clusters.



Venue: Palazzo Grandi Stazioni, Fondamenta Santa Lucia 23, Venice, Italy

You can download all the presentations here (one file).

Otherwise you can download the presentations you are most interested in, clicking below on the corresponding speaker's name.


You can find information about the speakers here.



Registration and Welcome Coffee


Welcome Address
Mauro Trapani, Director for Economic and Rural Development, Veneto, Italy






Clusters and Transformative Activities
Prof. Dominique Foray, EPFL, Chairman of the S3-4AlpClusters Advisory Board, Switzerland

Clusters as a Tool in S3-Implementation
DG REGIO Perspective
Peter Berkowitz, DG REGIO, Head of Unit Smart and Sustainable Growth






Transformative Activities for Smart Clusters

The S3-Innovation Model - Transformative Activities for Innovative Clusters
Prof. Jacques Bersier, S3-4AlpClusters LP, HES-SO//FR Innosquare Clusters, Switzerland                                                  
Michael Keller, S3-4AlpClusters LP, HES-SO//FR Innosquare Clusters, Switzerland

From Food to Non-Food - Transformative Activities in Fribourg – The Case of the Swiss Plastics Cluster and the  Cluster Food & Nutrition                                               
Prof. Rudolf Koopmans, Director PICC, HES-SO//FR HEIA-FR PICC, Fribourg, Switzerland                                                                     


Entrepreneurial Discovery
Identification of Transformative Activities in Northern Schwarzwald                                                      
Gerd Meier zu Köcker, Executive Director, ClusterAgentur Baden-Württemberg





























Action Development                                                                                                    
Development of Transformative Activities in Franche-Comte                                                         
Prof. Laurent Larger, Director FEMTO-ST, University of Franche-Comte, France

Cross-Regional Development of Transformative Activities
Experience from Veneto and Upper Austria  
Iris Reingruber, Project Manager, Business Upper Austria, Linz, Austria                                                                                                                                 

Cluster Services for Transformative Activities
Pilot Service experience from Trentino                                                                                     
Luca Mion, Head of Innovation - Hub Innovazione Trentino, Italy

Light Lunch – Networking

The S3-Innovation Model Toolkit

Overview of the Toolkit 
Simone Weiss, Project Manager, ITG Salzburg, Austria

Cross-Regional Cluster Cooperation – Synchronized Funding Schemes

Proposal for a Cross-Regional Scheme to Support the Development of TA
Mateja Dermastia, Anteja, Ljubljana, Slovenia                                                                                       

Panel: The Importance of Cross-Regional Cooperation                                                  
Prof. Franco Bonollo, Department of Engineering and Management and President of the Engineering School, University of Padova, Padova, Italy
Mateja Dermastia, Anteja, Ljubljana, Slovenia                                                                                        
Heidrun Hochreiter, Cluster Manager Food Cluster Upper Austria, Linz, Austria
Gorazd Jenko, Senior Expert, Government Office for Development and European Cohesion Policy, Slovenia                                                                                                                  
Philip Pfaller, Scientific Officer, Bavarian Research Alliance BayFOR, Germany

Clusters and S3 – Policy Implications

The Case of Salzburg 
Christian Salletmaier, Head of Unit Regional development and EU regional policy, Land of Salzburg, Austria

Panel: A new Role for Clusters in Regional Development Policies – The Challenges ahead
Merete Daniel Nielsen, Director, Cluster Excellence Denmark and President TCI Network
Christian Salletmaier, Head of Regional development and EU regional policy, Land of Salzburg,  Austria                                                                                                                 
Gerd Meier zu Köcker, Executive Director, ClusterAgentur Baden-Württemberg
Ivan Boesso, European Policy Department, Veneto Innovazione, Italy
Denny Schüppel, Head of project and knowledge management, Cluster MAI Carbon, Bavaria, Germany

S3-4AlpClusters Project Closure
Jacques Bersier, S3-4AlpClusters LP, HES-SO//FR Innosquare Clusters, Switzerland

Alpine Space Programme Perspective
Christina Bauer, Head of Managing Authority, Alpine Space Programme

Closing Address
Rita Steffanutto, Director Research Innovation and Energy, Veneto Region, Italy

End of the Conference