The High Level Group report on innovation policy management for EU

Pubblicato il 31 Ago 2014

Today the High Level Group on Innovation policy management released its new Blueprint document 'The way forward to improve people's lives: inspiring and completing European innovation ecosystems' (the full document will be available here in the next hours and is now avilable for Startupbusiness members at this link). As anticipated by Startupbusiness (here the previous article in Italian), the High Level Group is aimed to define innovation policy management strategies to help European Union to further develop its actions to support innovation.

An effective innovation policy needs to focus not only on stimulating inventions and incremental improvements, but equally on their successful application and introduction in the market. Such a comprehensive policy is an essential complement to the completion of the Single Market and the surest way to stimulate economic recovery. After the austerity measures, it can create an attractive new narrative for European integration. But the EU, despite a number of initiatives which go in the right direction, still has to make significant efforts, before there will be interdependent innovation ecosystems functioning in all Member States, stimulated and complemented by specific efforts of the EU itself.

Innovation needs to focus on products and services, processes and marketing, and on management. It needs to look at existing and new markets. It needs to consider governance innovation, in order to ensure the necessary synergies and cumulative effects which will bring enhanced competitiveness in global markets and a new basis for maintenance and adaptation of national welfare systems in the European Union.

The key conclusion of the first phase of the High Level Group on Innovation Policy Management was that, in order to create added value for society and increase competitiveness and employment, Europe needs to work towards an innovation ecosystem which would allow to unleash the dynamic interactions and feedbacks between the hitherto insufficiently coherent actions of the EU and national governments, large and small business, universities and centres of learning across borders and economic sectors.

In order to resolve the pressing needs of growth and employment, industry must be recognized as the basis for Europe to remain a global economic leader. Therefore the needs of different industry sectors must be accommodated in policy and regulatory frameworks which are sufficiently adapted to global economic realities and stable to justify long term investments. This is equally necessary for small, medium as for transnational companies.

This is also requires a better business-government interface for competitiveness, focussed on capturing the high end parts of the value chain and on strengthening its position in global markets, in high technology as well as in traditional sectors. Therefore the EU should concentrate primarily on stimulating the right frameworks for comprehensive innovation and for building key competitive advantage, where it can really make a difference.

An integrated innovation policy for industrial competitiveness can be built upon an innovation ecosystem. Europe needs coherent and coordinated policy responses and an approach that looks at the whole value chain, from infrastructure and supply to distribution. Without a quantum leap in innovation policies, Europe will not be able to muster its economic and social problems and make its industries strong enough to compete. Special attention must be given to long term business-university cooperation, to training and education and developing entrepreneurship to create employment opportunities in accordance with the competitive opportunities and challenges of companies.

However, European Union and national government systems are not sufficiently adapted to manage innovation ecosystems and to stimulate growth and employment in a digitalized and globalized economy. This lack of governance innovation is one of the main causes of Europe’s declining competitiveness and of national economic problems.

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