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Peer learning in business innovation tools for SMEs

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - Peer-BIT (Peer learning in business innovation tools for SMEs)

Reporting period: 2015-10-01 to 2016-09-30

The project aims to increase the quality of services provided for SMEs in the area of innovation management. One of the main challenges in this respect is identification and selection of the most appropriate tools and their adjustment to the particular conditions in a given region. For the innovation support to be most effective, the tools need to be sufficiently universal and standardized to allow for quality control, easy to use, yet flexible and easy to customize to the specific needs of a given SME. The partners of the project jointly decided, based on a previous positive experience, that the best way to address this challenge is exploring possibilities of effective implementation of smE-MPOWER methodology.
The overall objective of the project was creating an easily adaptable methodology that can
be used in any region defined by its own set of circumstances in terms of economy, culture, institutional development etc. In order to reach this goal, the regions, that were partners to the project and are defined by very different set of circumstances, peer reviewed each other and their approach to training SMEs towards successful innovation management. They also involved experts who founded the smE-MPOWER methodology in these peer reviews and later real case coaching of companies in the participating regions.
- 1 opening event in Brno CZ, hosted by JIC
- 3 peer reviews and real case coaching events in Brno (CZ), Vilnius (LT) and Linc (AT)
- Continuous dissemination activities on regional, national and EU levels (conference appearances, articles, interviews)
- Final result: Design Option Paper – A practical guide for designing and implementing smE-MPOWER based coaching schemes created for all interested regions
There is a great need for such a tool in the regions that are now more than ever interested in development towards smart and innovative economies. The potential impact of this methodology was expected to be major impact on SMEs, regional innovation agencies and the economy as a whole.
The methodology has been successfully developed and will be openly available to regions that are able to define this need and may choose from this toolbox what will match their needs to boost their bottom up economic development.