a smarter way to work

Micropol at EU Open Days 2013 (8 October 2013)

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Micropol project to organise a workshop during EU Open Days (7-10 October 2013).

On Tuesday 8 Oct from 11:15-13:00 an interactive and dynamic MICROPOL workshop will demonstrate and debate how to shift in work culture in rural Europe through improving ICT infrastructure, entrepreneurship and the availability of qualified jobs in rural areas. Discover how the 2.0 economy can help to re-vitalise rural Europe through the development of non-metropolitan Smart Work Centres.

Time and location : 11:15-13:00, 8 October, 2013 ; Committee of the Regions Room 53, Jacques Delors Building, Rue Belliard 99-101, Brussels.

All participants will be sent a preparation pack and are requested to bring a smart phone or tablet-computer, you’ll need them for the workshop activities.

Our workshop will take place in the Meeting Place : to register for the workshop and find out more on the Open Days

See you there !

Workshop Programme

D 1. Welcome and introduction : Workshop Chair, Clive Peckham, Niévre Numèrique, France ; Objectives : To present the organizers of the workshop and their motivation. Present MICROPOL as an Interreg IVC project and as a concept : how Smart Work Centers can create a counterbalance to the concentration of ICT related activity and jobs in Metropolitan Europe. Explain our perception of what a Smart Work Centre is and give the workshop participants some background to Smart Work Centers in Rural Europe. And finally to give some statistics on Smart Work Centers and smart working, introduce participants to the speakers + workshop objectives.

2. The Micropol project, Smart Work in North Denmark & rural Europe : Ole B. Soerensen, President North Sea Commission & Councillor North Denmark Region ; Objective : To open the discussion + debate by giving a short background to MICROPOL (why North Denmark Region initiated the project) + the current work in North Denmark Region –+ why Mr. Soeresen considers Smart Work Centers to be an important focus for rural development actions in North Denmark Region/The North Sea Region + Non-Metropolitan Europe. How in or re-migration of high-skilled professionals with well-established contacts with core markets could have a significant positive impact on the local economy.

3. The development of a Smart Work Centers as a cornerstone of the economic and social development and regeneration of a remote rural town : Video presentation of Lormes Smart Work Centre in the Nièvre County, Burgundy, France : commentary by workshop chair Objective : To introduce the audience to a ‘classic’ rural Smart Work Centre, communicating through video and still images and accompanying commentary the social, economic and political environment to the setting up, operation and expansion of a Smart Work Centre and MICROPOL good practice (+ with very brief mention of November Visit with reference to Murat + Mende – will help to develop interest in the project) also highlighting the impact of the Smart Work Centre in terms of rural entrepreneurship, citizens education and ICT awareness, social life, etc

4. Enhancing the Rural Smart Work Centre model by Andrew Martin, Manager Berwick Workspace Northumberland, UK ; How a ‘Smart’ business incubator can boost the local economy through offering collective and co-working services. Objective : To introduce the audience to a valid Smart Work Centre variant (most regions have business incubators + this can be an excellent way of showing how existing or planned economic infrastructure can be adapted to include Smart Work Centre elements).

5. High Speed Broadband – The fundamental building block for a successful rural SWC by Anne-Mari Leppinen, Economic Development Agency of Suupohja Region, Finland and the ENGAGE project Challenges, opportunities and reality of developing High Speed Broadband infrastructure in rural Europe. Objective : References will be made as to how the VHS Broadband infrastructure benefits local economy + society (including reference to education, health and public administration benefits) and need to link development of infrastructure with uses. References will include to the partnership and the funding of VHSB and how it has had a positive impact on local businesses, in connecting rural communities and public services in rural Finland

6. The European policy context : Current and future European ICT and Broadband policy, its impact on Smart Work Centers as tools to revitalize rural Europe : Guido Acchioni, DG CONNECT, European Commission Objective : To introduce the audience to the European policy context in the next programming period (+ references to the previous + to the Digital Agenda) + to better understand EC/DG Connect position on potential contribution of non-metropolitan Smart Work Centers to EUROPE 2020

7. Facilitated debate/Interactive session : Why should I Smart Work in rural Europe and where ? Participants will work in small groups to select their ideal location for a career changing move for them, their department or business to rural Europe Each participant will be presented (one week before with one of four scenarios) the 30 minutes activity is designed to encourage the participants to ask the following questions : What would make them work from a Smart Work Centre ? What do they expect from a Smart Work Centre ? How would they encourage their colleagues and management to make the move.

8. Final plenary session : Workshop participants, the presenters and MICROPOL Coordinator Jane Ribergaard Holm will discuss the identified challenges and the success factors for non metropolitan Smart Work Centres Such as : How can Smart Work Centers contribute to regional development, i.e. contributing to smart, sustainable and inclusive growth ; Is the best practice presented relevant to the new operational programmes (OPs) which will be implemented in 2014-2020 ; What are the necessary policy and practical steps to take in order to start the more widespread successful development of these facilities ; What are the practices to be encouraged and avoided ?

9. Closure with all participants encouraged to go to the networking session where there will be some great food from rural France + European Commission Coffee

We look forward to meeting you in Brussels Jane Ribergaard Holm (North Denmark Region) & Clive Peckham (Niévre Numèrique)

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