The Dialogue Workshop in Zagreb, Croatia focused on the specific topic of the funding of Research Infrastructures (RI) by the structural funds through the Operational Programmes (OP), the interlink with the Smart Specialisation Strategies and other regional planning processes.
Topics covered in the sessions were:
- RI issues in the regional innovation (and smart specialisation) strategies;
- Financial sustainability of RIs;
- Regional projects interlinking with S3 and regional co-operation of RIs;
- Implementing instruments in S3: Building new and improving existing Research Infrastructure.
The first session focused on the role of RI for regional strategies and programmes. Input covered on the RI investments in Lithuania; the contribution of research infrastructure projects to smart specialisation in Croatia; the interlink of RI issues and regional innovation strategies in Bulgaria. All three countries presented new insights on the individual approaches developed, namely the strong influx of funding in the RI development from ESIF and the steering of funding was a core topic.
The second session focused on the financial sustainability of RI’s funded by the ESIF and the core challenges for maintaining financial sustainability of RI’s. Also the question how to assess the socio-economic impact of research infrastructure in the context of smart specialisation was answered. This session also included the well known expert Alasdair Reid (EFIS) showcasing the experiences from assessment actions in Estonia and also informing about RI-PATHS.
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Image source / credit: ResInfra@DR, CC0