CREATHRIV-EU Project enters the next phase

Submitted by Giovanni Scaramuzzo on 20 February 2023


CREATHRIV-EU partners have just concluded the activities under work package 2 whose aim was setting the knowledge basis for the future project activities. Under task 2.1, partners gave a better overview of the CCIs and the subsectors that are more relevant for the project along with a depiction of the value-chains.

As we know CCIs is quite a diverse ecosystem and not all sub-sectors are represented by the CREATHRIV-EU consortium, therefore the future project activities will focus on the following sub-sectors:

  1. Heritage, archives, libraries
  2. Audiovisual and multimedia including IT, software & computer services
  3. Books & press - Visual art - Performing arts
  4. Education.

During task 2.1, SMEs were also involved, to present their experiences in terms of resilience, internationalization, innovation and twin transition. The main findings of this activity were as follows:

  • A lot of SMEs faced serious problems during the Covid Pandemic linked mainly lo the reduction of the demand for their services but those in the AVM were the ones that better reacted;
  • Generally, SMEs consider innovation as very important but they face major problems in accessing funding and infrastructures;
  • Digitalization is a massive driving force in the whole CCIs ecosystem and digital technologies play a role across the whole value-chains, from the creation to the distribution and final consumption, and many companies are already well equipped to seize the opportunities linked to digitalization;
  • Green transition is in the SMEs agenda but it needs to be reinforced, above all in some sectors, such as cinema. Companies see the green transition just in some business activities, such as travels, but other activities should be considered for a real transition;
  • There is still a skill gap in the ecosystem, since 75% of the companies find it difficult or very difficult to find people with the right skills on the job market. Up-skilling and re-skilling are considered important and might help overcome the gender imbalance supporting more women entering the CCIs, especially in the tech sectors.
  • Nearly half of the SMEs that took part in the survey don’t have any trade relationship but they see both the EU, the USA and China as very attractive markets.

Obviously, clusters are in a favorable position to help SMEs overcome their challenges and reinforce their competitive positions but, to do so, skills of cluster managers are paramount, therefore we decided to understand their knowledge gaps under task 2.2. The first part of the task focused on the structure and rationale of the questionnaire. Taking into consideration the call and project’s specific objectives, we drafted a 42-question questionnaire around 4 main areas:

  1. General management skills and tools
  2. Innovation Support
  3. HR and Organization Management
  4. Internationalization.

These four areas can be considered related to the hard skills of cluster managers. The idea was to avoid excluding the soft skills that have become pivotal nowadays, above all for cluster managers. Cluster managers were asked specifically which one of these skills they wanted to learn/improve. The questionnaire, that involved 10 cluster managers, 2 for each of the CREATHRIV-EU partner clusters, highlighted a certain level of skills and experience of the target group involved in task 2.2 along with some improvement areas related to either the lack of theoretical knowledge or the lack of specific experience in some SME support activities that needs to be overcome.

In the next weeks, CREATHRIV-EU activities will focus on:

  1. Starting the networking activities and engaging all relevant stakeholders to address some specific challenges that the CCIs is currently confronting;
  2. Launching the call for grants, whose official opening date is set for the 1st of March and the deadline will be on the 2nd of May at 17 Brussels Time.
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