10 things to know about Interreg

1. Transnational cooperation helps to reduce disparities and increases cohesion

By facilitating knowledge exchange, transnational cooperation empowers disadvantaged regions. It builds capacities and enables each territory to learn from the others, tapping into methods and solutions that are then developed or applied elsewhere in the region.

We connect enterprises with research facilities

© Lasse Davidsson | DESY

The Baltic Sea region features a wide range of research and innovation infrastructures. Yet these infrastructures are not equally distributed, interconnected or optimally utilised.

The Interreg project Science Link therefore created a network of large-scale neutron and photon labs which offered consultancy and beam time to enterprises, in particular to small and medium sized enterprises. More than 40 enterprises from the Baltic Sea region received access to large-scale, high-tech research facilities to develop their products in areas such as energy, food, biotechnology and chemicals. Through the follow-up project Baltic TRAM more than 60 small and medium enterprises solved a specific challenge in product development, e.g. in automobility, aviation, drug development, biotechnology, or 3D printing. The project arranged consultations to identify the companies’ research needs and to locate suitable researchers.

The project CAROTS is aimed at institutionalising the good practices of connecting researchers and enterprises established in previous projects. By connecting enterprises with research facilities, transnational cooperation contributes to cohesion and equal chances for running business in the Baltic Sea region.

We give disadvantaged people in rural areas a say in their future

©PantherMedia | Iakov Filimonov

A downward spiral of emigration, economic downturn and loss of services in rural areas of the Baltic Sea region puts disadvantaged groups at risk of poverty and exclusion. Some social service providers have been helplessly watching this development, while others have already developed a new approach to social services: empowerment. Social service providers activate recipients of social services to voice their needs in service design and to become part of the solution themselves.

In the Interreg project SEMPRE social service providers learn methods and examples of empowerment. In 30 micro projects in eight countries social workers learned how to use empowerment tools such as the social business model canvas or the theory of change to involve their clinet sinto co-creation processes. For example, Syrian migrants established a cooperative in Lulea which produces, among others, fruit bags to replace plastic bags and sells them locally. Handicapped people and people with low income in western Latvia together made a recipe book with affordable meals.

In the follow-up project SEMPRE Accelerators, the partners turn eight of the most promising micro projects into self‐sustaining social start‐ups that consistently offer services and/or products on local and regional markets of the Baltic Sea region. Transnational cooperation thus enables social workers in remote areas to combat social exclusion with methods that have been successfully applied elsewhere.

Project stories:
New skills for social workers in Lithuania and beyond

More information about the projects SEMPRE and SEMPRE Accelerators.


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