Merete Nørby, International Senior Consultant, Ph.D. at MADE – Manufacturing Academy of Denmark cluster

ECCP: How did you experience the EU-CAN cluster cooperation event?M.N: This was the first time for me to participate in a EU cluster matchmaking event. I was very glad to be offered the opportunity to participate. The fact that you have to apply and forward information about you cluster and motivation for participating is a very good idea and helps to assure that the event is taken seriously. I liked the intro with short and personal presentations setting the scene. It was good that you had both the EU hosts and Canadian visitors in the same panel session. Also it was nice that several people stayed also for the tours and also for the reception, where we got a good chance to talk and get to know each other a little better and introduce other views.

ECCP: Did your participation make a difference for your cluster?M.N: I got a chance to meet both with the Canadian delegation and also made new contacts to European clusters that I did not know before. The talks I had with individuals from Canada – especially the ones related to Advanced Manufacturing – gave me an interesting insight, that inspired me to sign up for the Toronto event. The fact that the Hannover EU-Can event was so well organized and the content and people attracting, have given me the proof that using time and resources for the Toronto event can be worthwhile. I would most likely not have signed up for the Toronto event, if I had not had the good indications from the Hannover event.

ECCP: Are there any learnings/outcomes/future perspectives for collaboration?M.N.: It was very effective this way to get to know people much better than through a telco or an event with just presentations. The discussions in sub groups where all participants gave a short intro was very effective. I also enjoyed the bus ride talks – a big bus giving the possibility to move around and talk to several people was a good idea. Some of us could confirm that we would already meet again at EUREKA event in Manchester in May. Also I had a chance to bring some information about European projects to the table, where for instance I4MS and C-Voucher could be of interest for the Canadians.

ECCP: Any concrete ideas for next steps?M.N: Writing and sharing one-pagers on concrete project ideas is definitely one important step forward. Perhaps a template for such ideas in a very short form could be a push towards more concrete cooperation. Physical meetings are always a good way to make sure things progress – this way having the Bucharest Cluster event, the Manchester EUREKA event and the Toronto CAN Supercluster event coming up is good motivation. Supplementary perhaps announcing a follow up telco could be a good idea – for next time.

Finally I would just express my thanks for organizing the EU-Canada event in Hannover - it was indeed rewarding and a pleasure to participate.

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