BIO-Boost visit CLIC

BIO-Boost consortium visited CLIC Innovation

BIO-Boost is a two-year European initiative aiming to increase the latent potential of the participating innovation agencies and their networks. The project connects seven European regions with varying innovation levels and profiles. Peer-to-peer learning and knowledge exchange between the partnering agencies are at the core of BIO-Boost activities.

The partnership has been strategically selected to form a consortium with a wide variety of complementary skills and expertise. To support the exchange of best practices and knowledge, BIO-Boost has established a staff exchange and study visit programme. Due to CLIC Innovation’s unique profile within the consortium, the programme of the Helsinki staff exchange and study visit was built around the themes of open innovation, co-creation and ecosystem management. The visit took place in mid-September 2023. 

Open Innovation Ecosystem Playbook is an online service designed and provided by CLIC Innovation. It offers a set of workshop concepts, training and guiding activities to support various emerging and existing ecosystems on their ecosystem development journey. A three-step facilitator training concept has been developed to support the use of the Playbook tools. As part of the staff exchange, BIO-Boost partners had the opportunity to participate in the first phase of the training and to test the tools in action during a workshop. As the Playbook tools and methods can be easily adapted and applied in various contexts beyond ecosystems, the session likewise provided BIO-Boost partners with a new perspective and approach to collaborative work. 

Ecosystems were another key theme during the study visit. 4Recycling is a CLIC-managed innovation ecosystem targeting at solving the plastics challenge. Given the systemic nature of the challenge, it cannot be resolved by a single actor. 4Recycling brings various types of organisations together in four focus areas. RDI roadmaps and market shaping plans have been co-created by ecosystem members to guide the work.  

During the staff exchange, BIO-Boost partners gained more insight on ecosystem development and management through experiences from 4Recycling. Moreover, the 4Recycling Nordic Forum “Towards sustainable solutions in replacing and recycling plastics” provided partners with a first-hand experience of the ecosystem operation. The event gave a broad overview on the ecosystem member organisations and their diverse approaches to solving the plastics challenge. During the event, Conny Hanghøj, BIO-Boost coordinator from Food & Bio Cluster Denmark, had the opportunity to present the project and its objectives for a large stakeholder group both on-site and online to further support networking and forming new connections.  

To conclude the staff exchange, on-site visits to Aalto University Bioinnovation Centre, Aalto Startup Centre and Urban Tech Helsinki broadened the perspective from innovation to commercialization and business. 

According to feedback, the week was intensive but full of new knowledge. “The programme was very well planned and organised. Seeing the holistic approach applied at CLIC was inspiring”, stated Emilio Rull Quesada from onTech Innovation in Granada, Spain. 

Author: Kaisa Simola, 22.9.2023