Silicon Saxony

EXCITE project completion: Mission accomplished. The work continues unabated.

April 16, 2024. Since February 2022 Silicon Saxony – as project coordinator – has been working with the support of five other clusters from Poland (Mazovia Cluster ICT), France (Pôle SCS), Lithuania (Business Hive Vilnius Cluster) and Bulgaria (Cluster for Digital Transformation and Innovations) to improve Europe-wide networking between cluster organizations and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

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Treffen der EXCITE-Partner im Rahmen des 17. Silicon Saxony Day in Dresden. Foto: Silicon Saxony / Tommy Halfter

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Silicon Saxony

Marketing, Kommunikation und Öffentlichkeitsarbeit

Manfred-von-Ardenne-Ring 20 F

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ClusterXchange, a pilot project for short-term and targeted exchange between the aforementioned players, was intended to bring the industrial ecosystem in Europe even closer together. Almost 100 ClusterXchanges later, all project partners have every right to be pleased. New services and benefits have been developed for SMEs. The clusters learned from each other. All project partners involved are now working together more closely and successfully than ever before. In addition, digital innovations and further developments were initiated that not only help the clusters themselves in their daily work. The distances to the SMEs have also been significantly shortened and cooperation has been further intensified. Together, it was possible to provide even greater mutual support and make the services of the participating clusters accessible to an even larger target group. A success that was celebrated shortly after the project was completed.

For example, networks and SMEs went on a total of 16 “business missions” with participants from 17 nations across Europe. With the support of European funding, cluster representatives and their members traveled to European industry hotspots, attended important industry events together, conducted matchmakings with local players, dedicated themselves to specific sectors and technologies or immersed themselves in emerging fields of innovation. From smart mobility and flexible electronics to joint presentations at leading trade fairs and conferences in the focus industries, a wide range of topics were covered. Silicon Saxony, as the German coordinator of the project, also received a visit in June 2023. As part of the 17th Silicon Saxony Day in Dresden, all project partners, numerous members of the participating clusters, the Silicon Europe association and guests from 20 countries came together in Saxony’s state capital. B2Match, a new networking concept, gave the SMEs that had traveled to the event direct access to the regional research and industry ecosystem. A total of seven such matchmakings were organized in various regions over the course of the project. A concept that worked extremely well throughout Europe. 19 collaborations and cross-border agreements were concluded. MoUs between different clusters were also concluded. Partnerships, projects and other collaborations were created in this way that will last long after EXCITE.

The statements (LINK to statements) from participating companies and cluster partners collected over the past few years alone show the broad basis on which EXCITE has helped over the two-year project period. It was not only the numerous SMEs that benefited. The clusters themselves also received the best input from other cluster organizations through the regular exchange and were thus able to further hone and significantly improve their own services. Best practices from the areas of cybersecurity, digital transformation, cluster excellence management and SME support illustrated how small and medium-sized enterprises in particular can be helped even better at cluster level and in the individual regions. Together, we made Europe’s cluster landscape stronger than ever before.

With a little melancholy and a great deal of pride, we now say “farewell” to the EXCITE project. The knowledge and experience gained will certainly not only accompany Silicon Saxony long after the project has ended.

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Photo: Silicon Saxony / Tommy Halfter

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