Day of Clusters in the Central Bohemian Region

On 6th September 2016, the “Day of Clusters in the Central Bohemian Region” event took place at the attractive premises of the ELI Beamlines R&D laser centre in Dolni Brezany, in the vicinity of Prague. During the event, which was organized by the National Cluster Association (NCA) and the Central Bohemian Innovation Centre (SIC), cluster organisations both from the Region and the rest of the country, leading representatives of the cluster-involved companies, universities and research institutions gathered to present the results of their mutual cooperation. The attendance of more than one hundred visitors proved the interest in the cluster development issues and achievements of cluster organisations in the Central Bohemian Region.

Milos Petera, the Governor of the Central Bohemian Region, together with Karel Horcicka, the Deputy for Regional Development, opened the event and pointed out the strong potential and need of cooperation in the specific fields of biotechnology, photonics, ICT and engineering, energy and food industry.

"Cluster organisations develop the competitive advantage of the Region. Due to the fact that the SIC aims to link the strategy of territorial development and building of innovation and research capabilities in the areas of identified regional smart specialisations, the Day of Clusters event has a considerable importance for us," Ivo Riha, Director of the SIC, said.

CzechBio, STAR Research & Innovation Cluster, ATOMEX Group, Czech Pellets Cluster and Biocluster represented the regional cluster organisations of Central Bohemia. Together with other excellent cluster organisations of the Czech Republic, such as CREA Hydro&Energy, Czech and Moravian Glass Cluster, Hi-Tech innovation cluster, Moravian-Silesian Automotive Cluster, Nanoprogress and Network Security Monitoring Cluster, they presented particular successful projects focused on key topics of Smart Cities, laser technology, nanotechnology, cyber security, applied molecular genetics, etc. Nanoprogress, the top innovative nanotechnology cluster and founder of the "AdPack" ESCP platform together with CREA Hydro&Energy, the member of “NATUREEF”, presented the priorities of the European cluster policy and the importance of the European Strategic Cluster Partnerships to regional and national policy makers.

"The cluster concept has been developing for 14 years in the Czech Republic, but the potential of clusters is still not sufficiently exploited in the regions," Pavla Bruskova, President of the NCA, pronounced. "That's why we try to show to regional stakeholders at the Day of Clusters what can be achieved if the cooperation of companies with research and educational institutions is well managed and stimulated in a cluster. However, to reach the optimum performance, the cluster organisations need a knowledgeable governance and integration in the regional development and financial instruments," she added.

At the event, the NCA awarded the Golden Cluster 2015 price to the CREA Hydro&Energy cluster for its achievements in cluster management, performance and internationalisation. Another highlight came at the event’s afternoon presentation session when the Ambassador of the Republic of Israel in the Czech Republic, HE Gary Koren, supported the idea of cooperation of the Central Bohemian Region with Israel, the world leader in cyber security.

The event, which took place under the auspices of the Governor of the Central Bohemian Region, Ministry of Industry and Trade, Agency for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Technology Agency of the Czech Republic and Association of Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises and Crafts of the Czech Republic, confirmed the growing significance of the cluster organisations in the fields of innovation and internationalisation development in the Czech Republic.