Italy has understood that it needs novel instruments that are more appropriate to its current challenges if the country is to compete on international markets and encourage innovation that can maximise the value of the excellence inherent in the “made-in-Italy” system. The key is to develop appropriate strategies and co-ordinate the various players nationally.
To this end, Italy in 2012 identified eight permanent Technology Clusters and supported 30 projects with financing amounting to about 300 million euros. The eight clusters are as follows:
- Green Chemistry
- Smart Factory
- Vehicles and systems for ground and maritime mobility
- Life Sciences
- Technologies for Life Environments
- Technologies for Smart Communities
With the Decree of July 26, 2017, Miur gave birth to four other National Technology Clusters
- Cultural heritage
- Design, creativity and Made in Italy
- Economy of the sea
Technology clusters aim to create closer ties between industry, research, and national and regional institutions, aligning them with national guidelines on research, development and training of human capital. Through permanent consultation with all involved, the Education, University and Research Ministry gains support and guidance to develop research and innovation strategies upon which it can base its future guidelines and investments.
Given the limited resources available for strategic issues, the technology clusters aim to help optimize the use of funds and produce results that can make a positive contribution to the country’s development and collective wellbeing.
They work to co-ordinate the various technological areas and aggregate skills, proposals and projects.
Thanks to the National Technological Clusters, Italy has an important tool for the positioning of its industrial and research system at European and international level. This tool will be the more effective the more the country is able to support the actions and respond to social and competitive challenges.