Resilience as the new paradigm for Smart specialisation since COVID
With the start of a new European programming period (2021-2027), all regions of Europe have to redefine their so called ‘Smart Specialisation Strategies’ (S3), let’s say their Regional Innovation Strategies.
IDEA Consult has been advising many of these regions in the last 2 years (e.g. South-Netherlands, Finland) and is now supporting two Belgian regions in doing so: the Brussels-Capital Region and the Region of Wallonia. Both exercises largely run in parallel and have similar points of departure: their S3 should allow for more and better growth that improves competitiveness, resilience and well-being in the long run.
A difference with the previous programming period (2014) is that the current exercises depart from ‘societal challenges’ (green transition, inclusive society) on top of economic growth and competitiveness. ‘Resilience’ and ‘Agility’ are the central concepts in the new paradigm since the Covid pandemic and its disruptive character for all economies and societies. As a result, new S3’s will be broad-based, much more participative, citizen-centric and encompassing a wide spectrum of innovations (incl social innovation) and sectors (incl cultural and creative sectors).