Call for project proposals

This call for proposals is launched in the framework of the joint programme of the European Union and Council of Europe “Routes4U”. Routes4U aims to create synergies between the Cultural Routes of the Council of Europe and the four EU macro-regions.

The mini-grant aims to contribute to the EU-Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR), one of the four EU macro-regional strategies, that covers eight countries: Sweden, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, and Poland.

Project proposals shall produce an added value to the Council of Europe and the European Commission’s efforts in the domain of Cultural Routes and macro-regional strategies. In the framework of the present call for proposals, they shall help enhancing the common identity within the macro-regional strategy for the Baltic Sea Region.

 

Contribution to the objectives of Policy Areas Culture and Tourism

The activities carried out in the framework of the grant-system must be in line with the objective of the European Union Strategy for the Baltic Sea region (EUSBSR). Projects have to aim at contributing to the objectives of PA Culture and PA Tourism of the EUSBSR.

 

What kind of activities are supported?

The activities should support local economies in an innovative and sustainable manner and contribute to the visibility of the Cultural Routes of the Council of Europe and of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region. The action needs to be inclusive as well as transnational, crossing at least three countries in the Baltic Sea region (the more countries of the Baltic Sea Region are involved, the better). Special attention should be given to young people and women entrepreneurships.

 

Deadline for application: 4 February 2019

 

More information about Routes4U & the call for proposals here.

 

Read also about the first Routes4U meeting for EUSBSR in the blog.

 

The 10th EUSBSR Annual Forum will be held in Gdańsk on 12-13 June 2019. The organisers of the Forum invite all strategic stakeholders to participate and propose seminars for the event.

Seminars are an essential part of the Annual Forums of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR). They serve to exchange views on themes pertinent for the EUSBSR as well as to develop and disseminate new ideas and initiatives.

The assesment criteria:

1. Seminar is open to all participants;
2. Seminar clearly supports the thematic focus of the Forum. The overall theme is “Circular and sharing economy as an answer to demographic changes and environmental challenges in the Baltic Sea Region”
3.  The seminars are expected to relate to at least one of the three main themes of the Annual Forum:

  • “Going circular – a pathway to well-being in the Baltic Sea Region”,
  • “Business-driven approach to circular economy in the Baltic Sea Region” and
  • “Demography and circularity in the Baltic Sea Region: interdependent or disconnected?”

4. Content of the seminar must be based on clear added value for macro regional cooperation for the Baltic Sea region.

 

Please find attached Guidelines for staging a seminar and Concept Note to be filled.

All proposals should be submitted to the organiser via e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by the 15th February 2019.

 

Find more information about the 10th EUSBSR Annual Forum on the official website: strategyforum2019.eu.

 

The year 2019 is a unique year for the EUSBSR as the Strategy celebrates its 10th Anniversary. In the framework of the EUSBSR, the first of the four EU macro-regional strategies, different actors have come together to join forces for the benefit of the region. Throughout this year, the past 10 years of the EUSBSR and people behind the work will be highlighted.

The National Coordinators' group has also sent a message for the jubilee year. The current Chair of the group, Marcus Haas, National Coordinator Denmark, on behalf of the group:

This year marks a special anniversary for the EUSBSR. 10 years ago, in October 2009, the European Council adopted its first macro-regional strategy, the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region. In its conclusions, the European Council stipulated:

“This Strategy constitutes an integrated framework to address common challenges, i.a. the urgent environmental challenges related to the Baltic Sea, and to contribute to the economic success of the region and to its social and territorial cohesion, as well as to the competitiveness of the EU.”

These words still ring true today. Macro-regional challenges persist, and the Strategy provides concrete answers. One example of significant importance is the Baltic Sea Fisheries Forum, an EUSBSR Flagship that has become part of the everyday cooperation work of the region.

Another example is the Baltic Sea Pharma platform, an ongoing EUSBSR Flagship project which offers regional cooperation to reduce pharmaceuticals in the Baltic Sea, targeting both human and veterinary pharmaceuticals.

The BLASTIC project is yet another EUSBSR Flagship which aims to reduce plastic waste and, thereby, the inflow of hazardous substances into the Baltic Sea by mapping and monitoring the amounts of litter in the aquatic environment. To educate a younger audience, a booklet for use in schools and kindergartens was published and translated to all partner country languages.   

These examples illustrate how the EUSBSR serves as a model for macro-regional cooperation, which over the years has inspired other regions. Today we have four macro-regional strategies in Europe.

Environmental issues will also be at the core of the upcoming EUSBSR Annual Forum in Gdansk on 12 - 13 June with circular economy as its main topic. We, the group of National Coordinators, are looking forward to participating and meeting all relevant stakeholders as well as interested parties and learn more about exciting new projects across the Baltic Sea Region.

Save the date for the 10th EUSBSR Annual Forum!

 

 

Circular and sharing economy as an answer to demographic changes and environmental challenges in the Baltic Sea Region

 

The 10th Annual Forum of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region will be held in Gdańsk
on June 12-13, 2019
. The Forum will be hosted by the Pomorskie Region, together with the
Baltic Sea States Subregional Co-operation (BSSSC) under the Norwegian chairmanship,
in close cooperation with the European Commission, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Poland and other partners. About 800 participants from governments, international organisations, NGOs, universities, local and regional administrations and businesses will gather to debate on trends and opportunities
in the Baltic Sea Region.

 

Three thematic sessions, panels & networking village

The 3 main thematic sessions of the Forum include: 

  • ‘Going circular – a pathway to well-being in the Baltic Sea Region'
  • ‘Business-driven approach to circular economy in the Baltic Sea Region'
  • ‘Demography and circularity in the Baltic Sea Region: interdependent or disconnected?'

Forum  will create the opportunity to participate in 18 thematic panels and Networking Village.

 

Visit the Forum's website

Please take a look at our official Forum website: strategyforum2019.eu for all further details, which will be published successively.

 

Macro-regional strategies can be seen as an innovative way of organising policy-making and regional cooperation. The four current strategies address specific challenges and opportunities in a certain geographical area, and  promote mutual learning processes through ‘experimenting’. The processes of macro-regions result often in new governance architechture, thus studying them from the perspective of experimental governance can help us to understand better the development of Strategies, and how they change regions.

The article "Experimental Union’ and Baltic Sea cooperation: the case of the European Union’s Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR)" written by Professor Stefan Gänzle focuses on the "soft space" of Baltic Sea transnational cooperation from the perspective of experimental governance.

Soft space is characterised by "informality, variability and flexibility of the institutional structures, different thematic and stakeholders’ involvement". However, in the long run, soft space may transform into a more stable and permanent structures, and change the already existing institutions. 

The article highlights some examples of the changes brought by macro-regional strategies. One example of the change (and importance of Flagships!) is the Baltic Sea Fisheries Forum, an EUSBSR Flagship that has become a permanent fisheries forum, and part of the region's cooperation.

The EUSBSR social media campaign #EUSBSRBetterTogether took place during six weeks from October 8 till November 16. Posts about the Strategy and its results were shared daily on Facebook and Twitter. Each week, the posts focused on one of the objectives, and highlighted it through projects and their achievements.

The campaing turned out as a success: lots of likes, shares, comments and retweets that all contributed to the increased visibility of the EUSBSR. Thanks to the campaign and to the multipliers of the messages, the results of the Strategy are more known, and clearly attract interest among the followers. It also proved that cooperation pays off - we are better together!

Here are the results in figures:

 

 

Would your organization like to start or expand a joint collaboration that contributes to sustainable economic, environmental or social development in the Baltic Sea Region?

The Swedish Institute provides seed funding for joint projects in which Swedish organizations meet transnational challenges in cooperation with organizations from the Baltic Sea Region countries and the EU’s Eastern Partnership countries. The project activities that the Swedish Institute supports via ‘seed funding’ must be clearly linked to one or more of the challenges identified in the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea region.

 

Basic facts about seed funding from the Swedish Institute:

  • The main applicant has to be based in Sweden
  • Seed funding projects can include the following countries: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Georgia, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Poland, Russia, Sweden and Ukraine
  • A partnership has to include actors from at least three countries. For more detailed conditions of the participation of specific countries and partnership composition see the website of the Swedish Institute.
  • A project can apply for a maximum of SEK 500,000
  • A project can run for no longer than 18 months.
  • The call closes 5 February 2019 at 15:00 CET.

 

More information

More detailed information and application documents can be found on the website of the Swedish Institute.

https://si.se/en/seedfunding

 

Contacts at the Swedish Institute

Annika Claesson, +46 8 453 78 58, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Katrine Larsen, +46 8 453 79 62, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Camilla Wristel, +46 8 453 79 67, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

At the end of October, six platforms kicked off. Project platforms is a new funding instrument by Interreg Baltic Sea Region with the aim of making more out of project results and maximising projects' impact. Platforms are also connected to the EUSBSR by involving coordinators.

Each of the platforms has a different approach: ResQU2 (increasing emergency preparedness related to sea shipping), Blue platform (dealing with different aspects of blue bio-economy), BSR Access (deals with TEN-T transport corridors), BSR Water (holistic water management), SuMaNu (better nutrient management in farming) and CSHIPP (cleaner shipping).

Read more about the platforms here.

New tools for cooperation throughout ESI funds and instruments

This event, organised by Interact, is aimed at pointing out what is the current situation for the use and implementation tools for cooperation throughout ESI funds and instruments and – as well – to identify future perspectives for the (simplified) use of new tools for cooperation and development, also in the framework of the EU macro-regional strategies.

Objectives of the event are among others:

 

  • Presenting legislative framework for the implementation of co-operation in IGJ/ESI Funds and rationale for cooperation,
  • Presenting the current state of play, experiences and future perspectives for the (simplified) use of new tools for cooperation and development,
  • Outline the possibilities and examples for embedding cooperation in programmes funded by ESI Funds, also in the framework of the EU Macro-regional strategies.

More information and registration here.

 

The Baltic Institute of Finland was appointed as the new coordinator of the Policy Area Innovation in the EUSBSR National Coordinators' meeting in Copenhagen September 26 2018.

The EUSBSR Communication Point had a chance to interview the new PA Innovation Coordinator Esa Kokkonen about the appointment and future plans.

 

What does the appointment as EUSBSR PA Innovation Coordinator mean to you?

This is an important acknowledgement for Baltic Institute of Finland and for its long-time and active work for innovation cooperation in the Baltic Sea region. We feel privileged and grateful for this opportunity and important EUSBSR task, as we have actively contributed to the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region and its flagship projects since the initiation of the strategy in the European Parliament in 2005.

 

What are your next steps from here as a new coordinator?

In 2018-2020, a special focus of PA INNO activities will be on regional innovation ecosystems and smart specialization, digitalization related research cooperation, kickstart activities e.g. on real-time economy concept and talent management, as well as on related capacity building. New areas and topics of innovation cooperation are identified and supported on a process basis. The activities are based on the PA INNO Strategy Guide 2016-2020. Cooperation with other Policy Areas will be also emphasized, as well as exchange with other EU macro-regional strategies. Various PA INNO events will be organized already in Autumn 2018, e.g. on capacity building and smart specialization.  

 

After this appointment, PA Innovation is now coordinated by Reet Reismaa (left), Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications in Estonia, Esa Kokkonen, The Baltic Institute of Finland and Tomasz Jalukowicz, the Ministry of Science and Higher Education in Poland.

 

Read also about the appointment on the Baltic Institute of Finland website.