In times when European regions move towards using their clusters as a tools to implement their Regional Innovation Strategies(RIS), the quality of the regional cluster portfolio is of significant importance. Regional actors involved have to gain an understanding of whether the regional cluster portfolio is capable and in the position to act as proper tools to implement the Regional Innovation Strategy. Norwegian regions have started addressing this issue. Their first step is to create regional cluster forums – the second is to test a set of new tools for supporting regional development developed by ESCA and Innovation Performance.
Nordland county established a «meeting place» for regional policy makers and the seven leading cluster initiatives; “Klyngeforum Nordland» in 2016. Innovation Performance and the European Secretariat for Cluster Analysis (ESCA) worked with Nordland to develop new tools that could support a long term cluster quality and capacity improvement efforts coordinated through «Klyngeforum Nordland”. To make the quality of the regional cluster portfolio more measurable and suited for continuous improvement, ESCA developed a new tool, the Regional Cluster Excellence Scorecards (RCES). The cluster forum approach, the RCES and ESCAs new benchmarking tool for regional policy and development; “StressTesting of Smart Specialisation Strategies (S3)» is now under testing also in the Arctic region of Norway. Follow our work by checking our documentation pages for the improvement activities in these to regions. (in Norwegian)