Services for the Economy: The Cluster Management
The requirements for companies in Schleswig-Holstein are also rather diverse. Companies face increasing pressure on their innovation dynamics, the need for sustainable use of resources, as well as the demographic change and its impact on specialist demand. All these factors influence their competitiveness. Companies can meet these challenges more successfully if they jointly cooperate in cluster initiatives. This is particularly true for small and medium-sized enterprises. They benefit from:
- the informal exchange of knowledge, information, experience and ideas,
- the distribution of innovation risks on several shoulders,
- easier access to cluster-specific services, and
- specialization gains in targeted and goal-oriented cooperation.
Sponsorship, Organization, Participation and Financing
In Schleswig-Holstein, cluster management is either linked to national or regional economic development or is directly funded by the companies and scientific institutions involved in the cluster.
The legal form of organization varies - from the project status in combination with a sponsoring association, through the registered sponsoring association, all the way to the management company – we have a little bit of everything. Regular strategy processes enable all members to participate in the organization of the activities.
The State Government supports the cluster initiatives with funds from the European Regional Development Fund and from its own resources. In addition, the industrial and commercial chambers in Schleswig-Holstein as well as the cluster members themselves - especially in the form of membership fees – contribute to the funding.
In order to promote the innovation and competitiveness of companies and scientific institutions, cluster management in Schleswig-Holstein provides a range of business-enhancing services. These are characterized primarily by their networked character:
- Events, workshops and seminars
provide knowledge about new technologies and markets, while also providing the opportunity for confidence-enhancing communication.
- Specialized groups and working groups
provide networking to cluster companies in particularly relevant questions, thereby creating the basis for joint ideas and solutions.
provide links between the companies - frequently by involving scientific expertise - and research and cooperation projects, which may lead to innovations, new products, services and processes.
- Marketing and public relations
provide the collaborative approach to make competencies and strengths visible in the region and beyond.
- Professional initiatives
ensure competence and future-oriented knowledge within the network.
- Delegations or trade fair participations
open up markets while the international and cluster-wide network acquires external know-how.