On May 22, 2019, the DIGITRANS Regional Policy Workshop was held in Maribor as part of the PODIM Conference 2019, the most influential startup and tech event in the Alps-Adriatic and Western Balkans region. Participants from startups and other SMEs, business and innovation support organizations, policymakers and digital transformation experts where invited to discuss the importance of digital transformation for SMEs in Slovenia and beyond. As part of the workshop, the DIGITRANS method was presented and the participants discussed how SMEs and other relevant stakeholders can benefit from it after the DIGITRANS project closure in mid-2019.

Urban Lapajne, the director of projects at IRP, presented the DIGITRANS project and the comprehensive method that was developed during the project to facilitate SMEs to develop and implement new digital business models that allow them and their businesses to benefit from the advantages provided by the digital technologies. Mr. Lapajne continued by presenting how Slovenia ranks in the global indexes of digitalization and digital skills as well as the key policy measures that address the digitalization of SMEs, including the digital innovation hub as the one-stop-shop in the field of digitalization, incentives for SMEs to implement e-business for the purpose of internationalization, SME incentives for digital transformation and vouchers for SMEs for various activities related to digitalization, such as strengthening the digital skills, development of digital strategies, cyber security and digital marketing.

The workshop continued as a round table chaired by the business and innovation expert Matt Kuppers of Startup Manufactory from London, Untied Kingdom. Among other topics related to the digital transformation, the participants of the round table presented their opinions and views on the importance of the digital transformation and shared some of the best practice cases from their regions. These opinions, views and best practice cases will certainly proof valuable during the development of the DIGITRANS regional policy recommendations and the Guidelines on DIGITRANS method implementation, which will guarantee the sustainability and transferability of the DIGITRANS project results after the project end at the end of June 2019, in particular by making sure that the DIGITRANS method and its toolkit remain to be valuable means for developing and implementing digital business models for SMEs.

Programme co-funded by European Union funds (ERDF, IPA, ENI)