RCC organizes preparatory meeting for ministerial conference on Western Balkans strategy for research and development

Zagreb hosted a preparatory meeting today for the Ministerial Conference on Regional Strategy for Research and Development for Innovation for Western Balkans, to be held in November 2011. The event was organized by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Secretariat.

Participants discussed four mid-term objectives of the Strategy: improving policy-making, implementation, monitoring, evaluation, and governance of national innovation systems; strengthening the science-base; accelerating commercialization and deepening collaboration with the business sector; increasing business research and development and facilitating innovative start-up companies.

At the opening of the event, Head of RCC Secretariat’s Building Human Capital Unit Mladen Dragasevic said the aim of the Strategy is to interconnect national research and innovation systems, thus promoting overall competitiveness of the region.

 “The Regional Strategy will identify existing research capacities and ways of improving cooperation among Western Balkan institutes and researchers. It is a regional priority in the area of building human capital, in line with the RCC Strategy and Work Programme 2011-2013.”

Representatives of respective ministries from the Western Balkan countries, the World Bank and the European Commission, as well as representatives of the RCC Secretariat, debated future scope of activities and an optimal module for implementation of the Strategy.

The Strategy will recognize priorities in terms of legal requirements, infrastructure, education and training, policies and programmes to be implemented by the beneficiary entities. The technical assistance is financed by the European Commission through a Multi-Beneficiary Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance project.

The Ministerial Conference on Regional Strategy for Research and Development for Innovation for Western Balkans is planned to take place in November 2011, in Belgrade, Serbia.