I would like to inform you about a very interesting subsidy called “Koop pro Wien” granted by the Vienna Business Agency to support enterprises participating in a cooperation project.
A precondition to receive this subsidy (max. €50,000, max. 50% of costs) is the membership of the lead partner at one of the following clusters: Automative Cluster Vienna Region (ACVR), Vienna IT Enterprises (VITE) or Kunststoff (Plastics) Cluster (KC). Furthermore at least three enterprises need to participate in a project not lasting longer than two years. In Austria this subsidy has been very successful. The subsidy’s influence on international research is not enormously high as the financial framework is rather low. However, the advantages are unbureaucratic and simple procedures.
For further details: http://www.wwff.gv.at/wwff.aspx_param_target_is_358271.v.aspx
What do you think about subsidies of this kind? Do you know any other examples of other or your countries? Are you of the opinion that such subsidies support the cooperation and research development? I would be very pleased if you shared your opinions with me!
Let me react to recent Robert’s interesting post here. I’m picking up some of his statements to comment …
Cluster cooperation may appear in two forms: as a formal legal entity or as natural cooperation among the participants. The current focus of publicly funded initiatives in CZ, HU and SK is to support formal legal entities.
That is IMHO a fundamental mistake slowing down bottom-up initiatives that might set up meaningful and sustainable clusters. Having to set up a new legal entity – in the environment where public-private partnership is still something to be learnt and where taking risk attitudes are low – builds another barrier of more demanding administration and bureaucracy.
Continue reading ‘Re: cluster building in CEE’
On the Round Table discussion on ICT clustering of the CITT conference, our participants came up with several interesting views. Let me share with you some of the group’s opinions about clusters:
- Cluster cooperation may appear in two forms: as a formal legal entity or as natural cooperation among the participants. The current focus of publicly funded initiatives in CZ, HU and SK is to support formal legal entities.
- Clustering in technology parks is a form of a virtual cluster: the cluster is the structure for the cooperation.
- There are no widely accepted criteria for measuring the success of clusters. Different metrics are relevant for different players (e.g. public bodies, academic instituations and independent companies.
- Why do SME’s cooperate ? They do not cooperate: they do business and earn money.
- A successful cluster needs a good university. Good university => cluster => high technology output.
- A cluster is a funding issue. Many clusters were created in the recent years. Will they survive after initial funding ends? When public funding ends, many ‘artificial’ clusters remain without real activities.
What do you think about these issues?
As Vit Skala and Guenther Krumpak have pointed out, a cluster is not just a heap of companies, but rather a strong cooperation among companies coordinated by a facilitator or cluster manager. However financing cluster management is not a simple issue.
As my fellow contributors have pointed out, clusters do not generally work by themselves. Professional coordination and management are crucial to ensure success.
Continue reading ‘The dilemma of cluster followup financing’