The Interreg Europe Policy Learning Platforms to support cooperation for cluster policy development

Submitted by Alina Danieles… on 23 November 2016

The Interreg Europe Policy Learning Platforms – launched in Brussels during the European Week of regions and Cities - form the second pillar of initiatives under the Interreg Europe Programme, alongside the interregional cooperation projects. They offer a space for continuous learning where any organisation dealing with regional development policies in Europe can find solutions to improve the way they manage and implement their public policies on four topics: research and innovation, SME competitiveness, low-carbon economy and the environment and resource efficiency. 

The platforms addressing issues related to “Research & Development” and “SME Competitiveness” are particularly relevant for the cluster world: cluster organisations (already involved in exchange through Interreg Europe projects or intending to be part of these) and cluster policy makers – owners or regional or national cluster programmes funded also from ERDF sources - get access to complementary sources of information and interaction through the two categories of services offered by the platforms: 

The first is available to the general public and includes free access to an extensive knowledge bank consisting of a database of expert-validated good practices, policy recommendations, EU policy trends and thematic studies, an analysis of approved projects and ROPs and events and links with other relevant platforms. Platform visitors can also make good use of the networking opportunities on offer such as the database of practitioners, matchmaking events and monthly online discussions on users’ interests. 

For registered users, the services include an expert helpdesk facility that capitalises on the wide-ranging experience of a large team of experts on policy advice regarding regional development issues, guidance in good practices and practitioners' databases. The expert support increases in complexity through a choice of policy learning events, thematic workshops, online e-learning geared to users’ interests and an exclusive offer of peer reviews and benchmarking exercises for the managing authorities and public authorities. 

The platform teams put strong emphasis on building communities of like-minded policy makers, practitioners openly exchanging information to improve the implementation of Structural Funds and other regional policies. In this respect, it is essential to listen to the needs of the targeted audience and put this user-oriented approach at the forefront of their efforts to provide support for the platform visitors or members to improve their policies. 

For more information please visit and register under 

To learn more about the Research and Innovation Platform and its services, please contact Andrea Di Anselmo, a.dianselmo [at] 

To learn more about the SME Competitiveness Platform and its services, please contact Philippe Délearde, a.dianselmo [at] 

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