ESCP-4i: First Generation (2016-2017)

ESCP-4i: First generation

The first generation of European Strategic Cluster Partnerships – Going International (ESCPs-4i) was labelled by the European Commission, DG Growth and the Executive Agency for SMEs of the European Commission following the COSME call COS-CLUSTER-2014-3-03 – Cluster Go International and their activities started as ESCP-4i labelled partnerships at the beginning of 2016. The partnerships' activities are now implemented and a second generation of ESCP-4i has started its activities in early 2018. The list of second generation partnerships can be seen here

Take a look at the Key Achievements of the first generation “European Strategic Cluster Partnerships Going International” available here.

The ESCP-4i are transnational cluster partnerships that develop and implement a joint internationalisation strategy and support SME internationalisation towards third countries beyond Europe. They aim to develop common actions and an implementation roadmap as part of a long-term cooperation agenda.

For the first generation of partnerships, the European Commission had selected 25 "European Strategic Cluster Partnerships – Going International" as a result of the COSME call "Cluster Go International" (COS-CLUSTER-2014-3-03), read about the launch event here:

  • including the 15 co-funded projects resulting from the call "Clusters Go International"
  • and 10 additional "voluntary" Partnerships that were on the reserve list of the call and accepted to keep working on joint cooperation agenda without EC direct co-funding.

An interesting "Research paper on cluster management internationalisation skills and keys for success in managing and promoting pan-European Strategic Cluster Partnerships" in support of the present and upcoming partnerships is available for download here.

The ESCP-4i projects were invited to participate in a consultation launched by the ECCP with the European Commission in June 2016. The topic of the consultation was the ESCP-4i projects’ activities and their interactions, including with the ECCP. A public version of the report can be downloaded here.

Key figures

All together, the first generation ESCP-4i Cluster Partnerships gathered about 150 cluster organisations across 23 European countries. The partnerships were composed of on average 6 cluster organisations. See the key achievements of the partnerships here

Industrial focus

Partnerships were active in various industrial and cross-sectoral areas including health, aerospace, mobility and logistics, agrifood, energy, marine and environment, packaging, materials and photonics, ICT, construction and sports. 

Target markets

The partnerships have been targeting cooperation with third countries' economies. Most partnerships already identified their target markets, per region or specifically mentioning target countries, before starting their activity; of which the main ones included Brazil, China, India, Japan and USA.