Call for Digital Innovation Hubs in 13 EU Member States

Submitted by Alina Danieles… on 31 August 2017

Deadline: 22 October, 2017

Cluster organisations and industry associations representing private sector companies from Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, or Slovenia taking on the role of a Digital Innovation Hub (DIH) have the opportunity offered by the European Commission to apply for participation in a training programme managed by PwC and Oxentia.

Objectives of the call

The DIHs should, after having gone through the training programme, be an important pillar for the digitisation of the industry in the selected countries and regions, where at the moment companies (especially those from traditional industrial sectors and SMEs) are investing less in digital technologies than in other parts of Europe or in other sectors.

Setting up DIHs to tackle the digitisation challenge is one of the best practices identified in the "Digitising European Industry" strategy. Several EU Member States have launched initiatives to set up DIHs, for instance the Mittelstand-Digital Competence Centres in Germany, the High Value Manufacturing Catapult in the UK, and Fieldlabs in the Netherlands. Also at European level, there are programmes like I4MS and SAE.

Who can apply?

DIHs are usually formed by a collaboration of different regional actors working together to offer a set of services that the industry of the region needs to go through their digital transformation. Possible actors that could lead applications to this programme are:

  • Universities and research and technology centres (RTOs), generally referred to as ‘competence centres’ (CCs) or ‘centres of competence’ (CoCs);
  • Incubators and accelerators that help start-up companies to grow and scale;
  • Cluster organisations and industry associations representing private sector companies;
  • Public administrations that are aware about the importance of innovation and are developing their smart specialisation plans.

Why apply?

The 30 DIHs that will be selected will participate in a programme which will help them to (further) develop their business plan. The programme will provide training, workshops and mentoring on business development skills and on sustainable activities (including identification of funding opportunities). It will be based on best practices identified by other Digital Innovation Hubs in Europe capitalising on PwC and Oxford University’s state-of-the-art knowledge and experience.

How to apply?

Partners who are interested in participating in the training programme are invited to fill in the Application Form by 22 October. After a first selection, individual interviews will take place in October.

In November 2017 the 30 successful applicants will be contacted to take part in the program. 

Please find more on the evaluation criteria, other information on the call, here.

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