Issue N° 127 - December 2014
The non-members subscribers will receive this newsletter at least two weeks after its official launch

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Keep up to date on innovation matters worldwide with the INSME Association!

Dear INSMEnews Readers,

2014 is coming to its end!

I hope it was a successful year for all of you!

For our Association it was indeed a good one as it marked our 10-years’ Anniversary and we are delighted to be able to count on 100 members from 44 different countries all around the globe with its variegated backgrounds and expertise.

May 2015 let us continue our path together and help us reaching out to new destinations, people, goals and friendship!

“Attract what you expect and reflect what you desire;
become what you respect and mirror what you admire.”

Courtesy of:


…and now as usual enjoy your reading!

Ms. Christin Pfeiffer

INSME Secretary General

The INSME Team welcomes your comments and inputs for further improvement of this service.

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Updates on the life of the INSME Network

INSME 2014: Great then - Better Now

2014 has been a productive and fruitful year for the network, memorable as it marks the 10th Anniversary of the Association.

Over the last 10 years, the Network has been committed to stimulate transnational cooperation and public and private partnership in the field of innovation, technology and knowledge transfer to SMEs engaging an ever more heterogeneous mix of stakeholders able to “make innovation happen in SMEs”.

As today the network can count on the active support of 100 Members from 44 different countries with a real global outreach. The INSME Secretariat has notably enlarged its service portfolio and renewed its alert and dissemination channels in particular. The INSME Secretariat welcomes comments and inputs on proper activities to even better meet Members’ expectations and needs.

The annual report is available for INSME Members upon request.

Get ready for the 11th INSME Annual Meeting

The 11th INSME Annual Meeting on “Technology and Innovation for Inclusive Growth” will take place from the 26th to the 28th of May 2015 in Cape Town, South Africa, co-organized by OSIBA Management (INSME Board Member).

Both INSME and OSIBA are working closely together to finalize the agenda and mark another important milestone in the life of the Network.

The official website is available at the following link and further information will be out soon, in the meantime please download the save the date here.

Please contact the INSME Secretariat at for any information you may need.

Welcome to our next new Member: the Confederation of Brazilian Chambers of Commerce and Industry!

The Confederation of Brazilian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Confederação das Associações Comerciais e Empresariais do Brasil-CACB) is a not-for-profit organization based in Brasilia, Brazil. It is one of the most important business entities in Brazil, gathering more than 2,300 Trade and Business Associations with the aim to create a better business environment and facilitate the internationalization of Brazilian companies.

Learn more about it here.

INSME is glad to welcome one new member from Brazil.

The 1st MIRRIS Policy Brief on mid-term results has been recently published

MIRRIS (Mobilising Institutional Reforms in Research and Innovation Systems) is a European project that aims at encouraging a better exploitation of European Research and innovation programmes and participation in the European Research Area of 13 target countries. INSME is an active partner since the launch of the project in July 2013.

Building on the policy dialogues conducted between March and July 2014 in the 13 EU target countries, the first MIRRIS Policy Brief on mid-term results has been elaborated and recently published, including inputs collected from the national target stakeholders concerning barriers and other relevant factors impacting on the participation rate to FP7/H2020. In particular the report identifies the barriers as: personal/motivational, organizational and structural according to the impacting factors.

The Policy Brief is available here.

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News and contributions from the INSME Members

Launch of UNESCO’s 70th anniversary celebrations

UNESCO (INSME Member) was founded on the 4th of November 1945 with the mission to contribute to peace building, eradication of poverty, sustainable development and intercultural dialogue through education, sciences, culture, communication and information. Today the organization counts on the support of 195 Member States working together to overcome illiteracy, develop the empowerment of women, encourage scientific exchanges and promote culture and freedom of expression.

The official celebration of the 70th UNESCO’s anniversary has been kicked off in Paris on the 31st of October 2014 (celebrations will continue throughout 2015). In this occasion a homage was given to Nelson Mandela, UNESCO Godwill Ambassador and “a man of universal significance, who embodied UNESCO’s ideals”, as declared the organization’s Director General.

Read more about the celebration here.

INTRASOFT International among the Best Software Testing Companies of the World

The Software Testing World Cup (STWC) is a global competition for software tests aiming at evaluating attributes and capabilities of a software application or system determining whether it meets all predefined requirements.

INTRASOFT International (INSME Board Member from Luxembourg) has been recently ranked 21st in a total of 133 different testing teams from Europe and in the 16% of the best software testers globally at STWC.

Mr. Athanasios Kotsis, CEO of INTRASOFT International, declared to be proud of this important result that demonstrates the high level of testing services provided by INTRASOFT International.

Find out more here.

Ms. Pamela Laughland, Managing Director at NBS named a Top 20 under 40 by Business London

Ms. Pamela Laughland, Managing Director at NBS (INSME Member from Canada) has been named a Top 20 under 40 by Business London, Canada.

In 2014 more than 180 individuals have been nominated and the best 20 have been evaluated according the following criteria: business achievement, growth and development, industry innovation and community involvement.

Ms. Laughland has been honored with this recognition for her important achievements in helping NBS to grow from few hundreds to 5,000 members, opening two international offices in South Africa and Chile and contributing to secure more than $1 million in private sector funding to support the organization’s growth.

Learn more here.

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INSME's Picks in the News

Africa and its partners to focus on integration and build robust institutions and infrastructure for public-private partnerships to succeed

On the occasion of the 6th African Public-Private Partnership Forum, that recently took place in in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, the urgency to find solutions for funding needs in Africa has been highlighted.

Africa is the region with the second highest growth rate in the world and solving the funding problem is crucial considering the annual deficit of $ 42 billion for the development of infrastructures.

According to Mr. Donald Kaberuka, President of the African Development Bank (INSME Member), the Public-Private Partnership can be of help to solve this deficit in Africa and at this purpose he states that “African countries must focus their efforts on factors that aim to improve the chances of PPPs succeeding”. In particular Africa needs:

  • A suitable environment, with a legal and political framework for PPPs as key;
  • Robust political engagement and a strong support from stakeholders;
  • A solid portfolio of reliable projects;
  • Institutional capacity to negotiate and manage contracts.

More information available here.

The Asian Development Bank (INSME Member) has approved $ 230 million loans to support Vietnam’s economic competitiveness

Vietnam’s GDP had decreased from around 15% per year in 2007-2010 to 11.5% in 2013 because of an unsophisticated financial sector, an important fiscal deficit, unequal conditions for state enterprises and private sector, an uncertain business regulatory environment that substantially is blocking investments, competition and growth.

In order to help Vietnam to overcome this negative trend the Asian Development Bank (INSME Member) approved $ 230 million loans that might contribute to introduce simplified value-added tax procedures, to reduce corporate income tax applied to SMEs, and to reduce transaction costs for small businesses. These measures will help boost productivity and support employment and poverty reduction.

The program’s estimated completion date is June 2015 and it is expected that the GPD will grow to 15% by 2020 from 11.5% in 2013.

Read more here.

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INSME Picks in the Web

How to boost innovation in cities?

Mr. Victor Mulas, in a recent article published on the World Economic Forum Blog, shared what are the most relevant categories of collaboration spaces, considered by the author as one of the key elements to create and grow urban innovation ecosystems in cities.

The categories’ list includes, among others:

  • Co-working spaces, that offer interaction with other people, flexible working hours and an environment for serendipitous discoveries;
  • Accelerators, that usually support entrepreneurs and start-ups in early stage of development;
  • Urban Labs, a concept implemented by some cities providing companies with a platform to test products and services in a real environment.

These are the first results of an ongoing research in mapping urban innovation and the author considers them as a starting point to expand and refine these categories.

Read the whole article here.

Defining the Role of Innovation in Company Resilience

Forbes recently published an interview with Fiorella Iannuzzi, advisory director at PwC, dealing with enterprise resilience and innovation.

Resilience is defined as the capacity that an organization has to address change, not only to survive, but also to evolve and adapt the company to change in order to create new opportunity of growth. In this framework innovation is considered as a key component of resilience as it is crucial to support the creation of adaptive capacity and agility. Finally Ms. Iannuzzi states that “in the context of enterprise resilience, both innovation and technology support cohesiveness in the organization and should be used to deliver on the overall business strategy”

Read the whole interview here.

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About China

Protecting product designs with patents in China

Europe and China seem to have different regional systems when it comes to protecting product design. While in Europe it is possible to seek protection for an original work as either a registered or unregistered community design, in China designs fall under the scope of patent protection, while no protection is offered to unregistered designs.

Learn more about how to protect product designs with patents in China here.

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Tenders, Calls & Consultations

Call for papers for the XIII Triple Helix International Conference 2015 on “Academic-Industry-Government Triple Helix Model for Fast-Developing Countries” has just been launched

The Triple Helix Association (INSME Member) is calling for papers for the XIII Triple Helix Conference 2015 on “Academic-Industry-Government Triple Helix Model for Fast-Developing Countries” to be held from the 21st to the 23rd of August 2015 in Beijing, China, in partnership with the Tsinghua University. Abstracts should address one of the following topics:

  • Advancing Triple Helix Theories;
  • Industrialization, Urbanization and Triple Helix Model;
  • Triple Helix for Sustainable Solutions;
  • Entrepreneurial University and Triple Helix’s Development;
  • University and Industry Relationships;
  • R&D, Innovation and High-tech Entrepreneurship;
  • Cooperative Innovation and the Triple Helix;
  • Triple Helix Model for different types of Innovation (Radical, Disruptive, Imitative, Frugal, Social Innovation, etc);
  • Government-Industry-Research Institute Collaborations;
  • Changing Role of Government in Innovation Systems;
  • Public/Private Venture Capital;
  • Science, Technology and Innovation Policy;
  • Gender and Innovation.

Academics, practitioners and policy makers are welcome to apply.

The deadline for abstracts submission is the 31st of January 2015.

Have a look at the call for papers here.

Call for applications - “HRTP Human Resources Training Programme” in Japan

The EU-Japan Centre for Industrial Cooperation (INSME Member) is calling for applications to participate in the 4-week Human Resources Training Programme - Japan Industry Insight to take place from the 11th of May 2015 to the 5th of June 2015 or 12th of June 2015 (5th week is optional and dates are to be confirmed).

Executives of EU-based organizations that are interested in Japan's business and technological achievements will have the opportunity to master their expertise through a combination of lectures, a joint seminar and company visits and gain elementary knowledge of the Japanese language and culture.

In order to ensure a high degree of personal attention, the number of participants in the programme is limited.

For the first four weeks of the programme, the EU-Japan Centre will cover costs relating to tuition (partly for non-SMEs), travel costs for visits and interpretation.

The deadline for submitting applications is the 12th of February 2015.

Find out more about the programme and how to apply here.

Best in Biz Awards 2015 International will be launched on the 5th of January 2015

The Best in Biz Awards 2015 International is an independent business awards program honoring companies, teams, executives and products worldwide for their business successes in the previous and current year.

Companies all around the world can apply for more than 60 categories, among them: Most Innovative Company of the Year, Fastest-Growing Company, Executive of the Year, Support Department, Most Innovative Product, Enterprise Product, Product Line, Website and PR Campaign of the Year; Non-profit or Government organization of the Year.

Awards submissions will be judged by a panel of writers and journalists for business, financial, trade and technology publications, as well as broadcast outlets and analyst firms.

Winners will be awarded with a trophy and will be featured in an internationally distributed press release and on the Best in Biz Awards website. Additionally all winners will receive winner logos that can be used on the company website and in other marketing and promotional materials.

Applications will be accepted from the 5th of January 2015 to the 6th of February 2015.

Learn more about the award here.

The 10th EuroTransBio call for proposals

EuroTransBio is organizing the 10th transnational call for proposals for innovative near to the market R&D&I projects in all fields of modern biotechnology (health, agro/food, industrial biotech, environment, marine/aquatic solutions). Consortia have to be coordinated by an SME, include at least 2 enterprises from two different countries participating in ETB, and may include additional partners from research organizations. Eligible countries/regions are: Austria - Flanders and Wallonia (Belgium) - Finland - Alsace (France) - Germany - Italy - Basque Country (Spain) - Russia.

The overall budget allocated for this call is of at least 16 million €.

The deadline for submitting proposals is the 30th of January, 2015.

For any further information, please click here.

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Interesting Initiatives

The FITMAN FIWARE Accelerate Programme

FITMAN is a FI-PPP Phase II project, developing and applying Future Internet (FI) technologies to manufacturing industries. Within the project, technologies have been applied to ten industry-led use case trials in the domains of Smart, Digital and Virtual Factories of the Future. The technologies are now available alongside non-technical resources and support at the following link.

The FIWARE Accelerator Programme targets SMEs and entrepreneurs.
€80 million are now available in direct funding, along with mentoring and networking opportunities, made available via 16 accelerator projects that cover different domain areas. The FIWARE Accelerator Programme offers a unique opportunity to receive funding for putting novel business ideas into practice. Three accelerators relate to manufacturing: FABulous, CEED Tech and FInish.

More information about their open calls and the other accelerators is available at the following link.

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Latin American Economic Outlook 2014. Logistics and Competitiveness for Development

The current international context and the uncertainty generated by the hardening monetary and financial conditions across the globe are posing threats to Latin America’s growth and economic development. Even though Latin American economies continued to present relatively stable growth in terms of trade over the last few years, it has been proved that there still is margin of growth within the region in terms of logistics performance and particularly in the areas of customs performance and the availability of infrastructure. Improvements to logistic services could boost labour productivity in the region by around 35% and thus support the region’s economies in repositioning themselves within global value chains.

This edition of the Latin American Economic Outlook released by the OECD (INSME Moral Sponsor) provides policy recommendations on how the region can increase its competitiveness and diversify its productive structure. This also involves taking the most out of existing infrastructure, making better use of information and communication technologies and promoting competition in transport.

Read more about it here.

The Global Entrepreneurship Index 2015

The world is at 52% of its entrepreneurial capacity according to the 2015 Global Entrepreneurship Index recently released by the Global Entrepreneurship Network in partnership with the GEDI Institute. The Index aims at measuring the quality and scale of the entrepreneurial process in 130 different countries around the world that are ranked on 14 "pillars", from the level of startup support available to the effects of industry competition and the availability of trained staff. According to the GEI score the top performers by region are: the United States, the United Kingdom that leads Europe, Chile to top the South with the Central American and Caribbean Region, the United Arab Emirates to top the Middle East/North African Region and South Africa leading the Sub-Saharan Africa.

Read the whole Index here.

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Recommended Website

The COPYME Platform recently launched during the Foromic event

SEBRAE (INSME Board Member) in partnership with the Inter-American Development Bank and the support of the Organization of Ibero-American States for Education, Science and Culture has just launched COPYME, a free access digital platform to share knowledge and promote competitiveness of small businesses. The online platform offers solutions in seven fields: innovation, public policies, access to market, access to financial services, customer services model, professional development and corporate education. The content is available in three languages (English, Spanish and Portuguese) and aims at supporting both small businesses and development institutions.

INSME contributes as a partner to this initiative.

Learn more about it here.

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Recommended Newsletter

The European Service Innovation Centre Newsletter

The European Service Innovation Centre (ESIC) aims at improving awareness among policy-makers at European, national and regional levels of the contribution of service innovation and service firms to economic development. To achieve this goal, the ESIC issues a newsletter that periodically provides an overview of the current state, methodologies implemented and concrete examples of service innovation to show how this approach can be of great added value to revitalize regional economies.

Read the ESIC newsletter at the following link.

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Highlighted events

Green Venture 2015

27th - 29th of January 2015
Leipzig, Germany

Organized by LC Innoconsult International (INSME Member)

Lc Innoconsult International (INSME Member) is among the organizers of the Green Ventures 2015 to be held from the 27th to the 29th of January 2015 in Leipzig, Germany.

The event is the largest forum for energy and environmental technologies in Germany that aims at supporting companies in the environmental and energy sectors in establishing contacts abroad.

To achieve this goal, the agenda will address companies, scientific institutions and administrative bodies in the water, air and soil sectors; energy and constructions sectors and recycling and regenerative material sectors and feature bilateral business meetings and negotiations.

For any further information, please click here.

GEC 2015 - call for nominations

16th - 19th of March 2015
Milan, Italy

Organized by META Group (INSME Board Member and President) in collaboration with the Kauffman Foundation and the Global Entrepreneurship Network

META Group (INSME Board Member and President) in collaboration with the Kauffman Foundation and the Global Entrepreneurship Network is organizing the Global Entrepreneurship Congress 2015 to be held from the 16th to the 19th of March in Milan, Italy.

In this unique framework META Group has designed the GEC Cities Challenge, in close cooperation with the Kauffman Foundation.

The challenge is open for all the cities with more than 50,000 inhabitants, with entrepreneurship at their core, that are willing to be recognized for attracting entrepreneurs, playing important roles in creating jobs, building economic resilience and introducing innovative solutions that improve the competitiveness of countries at large.

The aim is to discover hidden treasures among second tier cities that are rapidly boosting entrepreneurship, attracting talent, and leveraging “public” assets and to bring them to Milan.

To apply, please click here.

Future international meetings, workshops, seminars selected by INSME

5th – 6th of January 2015
IIPLA Annual Congress
Organized by the International Intellectual Property Law Association
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

9th of January 2015
Fast Track to Innovation Pilot (2015 - 2016) - A free Interactive Information Event
Organized by the European Commission
Brussels, Belgium

13th of January 2015
RTC North Export Workshop
Organized by RTC North (INSME Member)
Sunderland, United Kingdom

15th – 17th of January 2015
The 7th Global Intellectual Property Convention
Organized by the Institute of International Trade
Mumbai, India

16th of January 2015
Horizon 2020 ICT-16 Big Data networking day
Organized by the European Commission
Brussels, Belgium

19th of January 2015
Conference on the results of the public consultation on geographical indication protection for non-agricultural products
Organized by the European Commission
Brussels, Belgium

5th of February 2015
The 2nd Annual EU-US Trade Conference - The Transatlantic Trade & Investment Partnership
Organized by Forum Europe
Brussels, Belgium

15th – 21st of February 2015
Global Innovation Summit+Week
Organized by T2 Venture Creation
Silicon Valley, USA

18th of February 2015
Supporting Cultural and Creative Industries in Europe: Towards Smart, Sustainable and Inclusive Growth
Organized by Public Policy Exchange
Brussels, Belgium

23rd – 24th of February 2015
The Arab Achievers Conclave
Organized by MICE Quotient
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

25th – 27th of February 2015
2015 EFMD Entrepreneurship Education Conference
EFMD - The Management Development Network
Copenhagen, Denmark

2nd – 4th of March 2015
1st International Conference on Industrial Networks and Intelligent Systems
Organized by the European Alliance for Innovation – EAI (INSME Member)
Tokyo, Japan

17th of March 2015
The World’s Top Destination: Driving Sustainable and Competitive Tourism Across Europe
Organized by the Public Policy Exchange
Brussels, Belgium

25th – 26th of March 2015
6th ADB Business Opportunities Fair 2015
Organized by the Asian Development Bank (INSME Member)
Manila, Philippines

2nd – 5th of May 2015
48th Annual Meeting of the Asian Development Bank
Organized by the Asian Development Bank (INSME Member)
Baku, Azerbaijan

26th - 28th of May 2015
11th INSME Annual Meeting
Organized by INSME and OSIBA Management (INSME Board Member)
Cape Town, South Africa

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