As cities and countries, we need to learn how we can be innovative and innovate. This implies a different way of working, a multilayered approach. To accelerate urban development innovations within cities in Europe, it should build on regional strengths. Every region has its own focus specialisation themes and strengths for digital transition. These regional differences should be embraced and utilised as a basis for collaboration and learning.
The aim of this action was to set up an innovation acceleration platform which would work as an instrument for cities to disseminate practises and share experiences on the development and application of various digital solutions, ask for advice and find examples and success stories from cities that have taken leaps in digital transition. While cities could utilise the accelerator for sharing knowledge about various practical solutions, this action focused on providing tools for cities to organise themselves and build their own innovation ecosystems.
The partnership conducted a comprehensive research study under this action. The goal of the study was to develop a typology, which gives a better understanding of what kind of archetypes of European innovation ecosystems exist. Additionally, the study also developed a set of fixed and flexible criteria for the archetypes, which can be used by cities to classify themselves and develop the best strategies to enhance their innovation ecosystems.
The study showed how different types of cities will have different possibilities and approaches for their innovation ecosystem management. Partly because of this, also the development of digital solutions and tools for cities to manage the development won’t share common structure or platform or even targets. This will not support the development of one common innovation and dissemination accelerator platform that was the original objective for this action. Instead, the research study is providing the key elements to lead and build local innovation ecosystems in cities.
The findings are the starting point to create a first outline of an innovation ecosystem index, which can be used to create a concrete tool set that supports cities in Europe.