In conclusion to many studies and reports European Union policy shifted significantly towards specialization in 2014-2020 horizon. To ensure the best possible outcome from investments EU imposed a vocation of Smart Specialisations over member states regions. Smart Specialisations means a number of fields, in which the major part of European financing mechanisms will be turned on. In practice, depending on region, the projects from specified fields (Smart Specialisation) will get higher chances of financing under 2020 Horizon programmes in order to increase the value added to the economy and its competitiveness on foreign markets.
The whole Smart Specialisations concept is connected to selective investment into strategically important industries and markets. It can in turn fulfill niches in global market, a chance for regional companies to achieve international success (and bring the most from the investment). It also allows otherwise ineffective manufactures and companies to develop into innovative markets and maximize their potential. The best outcome and anticipated scenario is to transform regional economies, opens them up to global markets and focus on their strong sides.
A danger of this new policy is for long connected with EU funding – inflexibility. Smart Specialisations assumes strict funding in chosen fields of expertise. It means that resources could be cut out from the technologies and solutions discovered in the future, not considered earlier. Improper Smart Specialisations could shut the doors for potential innovations. Especially that in most Polish regions Smart Specialisations are chosen by the government officials – not the experts and entrepreneurs, who will use them in the future.
Thankfully, Pomerania region decided on a public-open method for the regional Smart Specialisations – a contest amongst most active clusters, groups of companies, institutions and organizations. The bottom-up approach not only guarantee the realistic specializations and future investments, it creates a new stream of communication between Marshal’s Office and the region most involved entities.
For the moment it seems that 9 fields are considered:
- high-tech in healthcare;
- healthcare, therapy and education for civilization diseases;
- smart energy;
- sea shore and offshore constructions;
- sea logistics;
- electrical transportation;
- smart and integrated system;
- R&D in high-tech;
- nanomaterials and multifunctional materials for medicine.
Black Pearls finds two of Pomerania Smart Specialisations particularly interesting: high-tech in healthcare and smart and integrated systems. For some time our focus is concentrated on Life Quality Technologies and innovations and these two specializations seems best suited for the region. They both involve innovative solutions and pursue technologies to serve and help citizens at day-by-day bases. Furthermore it can be the niche for Pomerania region that Smart Specialisations are trying to draw out.
The stakes are high. In last three years, by adjusting investments to real demand 20 billion euro was shifted between programmes. Smart Specialisations are developed to bring balance to investment structure and underline the new policy – outcomes and returns from investments. New round of European Union programmes is designed not only to deliver funding to local business but to ensure the best-possible management and in turn return for the region in taxes and new jobs.