The event brought together policy makers, innovation actors, stakeholders’ associations, business support organisations (innovation and sectoral agencies, etc.) operating both at territorial (regional/national) and transnational levels. It attracted over 50 participants on site and many more online through remote connection. Participants had the opportunity to listen to and interact with representatives of Mediterranean transnational organisations and strategies, as well as European institutions responsible for innovation policies and programmes relevant for the Mediterranean blue bioeconomy. At the same time, representatives of Euro-Mediterranean institutions had the opportunity to learn about territorial initiatives, needs and ambitions.
Three main objectives were met on this occasion:
- To launch the MED Innovation Alliance for blue bioeconomy
- To gather Mediterranean stakeholders from the quadruple helix involved in blue bioeconomy
- To promote connections between European and Mediterranean transnational initiatives with territorial policy making and grassroot innovation actors
The Forum was divided into three sessions spread over the two days.
The first one focused on “Innovation and sustainable Blue Bioeconomy: opportunities and room for truly transformative policies”. Representatives from key EU institutions, projects and initiatives (namely PANORAMED, BLUE BIO MED, B-BLUE, Blue Growth Community, DG MARE, Interreg MED Joint Secretariat, Joint Research Centre, Italian National Research Council-CNR, Ocean Mission Board) discussed what are the main upcoming opportunities for innovation activities across boundaries and how can Mediterranean stakeholders be informed and get ready to catch them and contribute to sustainable blue economy?
The second session “Co-designing the Mediterranean Innovation Alliance for sustainable Blue Economy: a journey to make together” consisted in officially setting up the Alliance and starting to reflect on its role, structure and initial actions. It was open to a reduced number of participants including founding members of the Alliance and other institutions willing to join the Alliance including BLUE BIO MED and B-BLUE partners, PANORAMED, the Union for the Mediterranean, EUSAIR, BLUEMED, WestMED, among others. Participants were invited to share ideas on potential key actions for the startup phase of the Innovation Alliance, namely around knowledge exchange and transfer, innovation project ideation and brokerage, through an interactive exercise.
The third and last session “BLUE BIO MED Institutional Conference: the Mediterranean Innovation Alliance for the Green Blue Deal” gathered several key actors of the blue economy in the Mediterranean, including key Euro-Mediterranean institutions (Union for the Mediterranean, WestMED, BLUEMED, Interreg ADRION) as well as a variety of territorial actors (i.e. regional authorities, research centres, sectoral agencies, ministries). It intended to officially launch the Alliance and bridge the transnational – European and Mediterranean – and the territorial – regional and national – perspective in innovation policy making.
All the material and presentations will be soon available here.
Learn more on the Alliance and how to join it.
For any further information, you may send an email to bluebiomedproject@. gmail.com
BLUEBIOMED is a strategic project co-financed by the Interreg Mediterranean programme that supports better governance of blue bioeconomy innovation policies bridging the transnational governance frameworks active in the Mediterranean area (i.e. UfM, UNEP-MAP, EUSAIR, WestMed, Bluemed Initiative, etc.) with the territorial – regional/national – policy making, assuming the Agenda 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as the common reference grid. BLUEBIOMED intends to develop a governance model of innovation policies to tackle complex challenges and test an innovative approach through policy experiments triggering the cooperation of the quadruple helix stakeholders for interregional innovation investments. The four experiments focus on circularity in sustainable aquaculture, recovery from the sea and recycling of macro-plastics waste, reducing and eradicating the impact of invasive alien species, digitalisation of the blue bioeconomy. BLUEBIOMED will support the start-up of a coalition to boost the Mediterranean leadership in the transformative innovation of the blue economy.
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