Project summary

The Public Policy Living Lab (P2L2) project supports countries and regions invested in the field of advanced materials by introducing or improving local policy to support innovation in this field.

Project Goals

  • Establish policy roadmaps that will improve the regions’ innovation ecosystem of advanced materials. 
  • Improving policy instruments that support the innovation ecosystem of advanced materials
  • Improving policy instruments related to the implementation and evaluation of smart specialization strategies
  • Coordinating/aligning regional policies and strategies between sectors to facilitate innovation ecosystems that go beyond administrative regional boundaries

The project aims at real changes, and that needs more than simply sharing good practices. For example, one of the project deliverables – the limited mapping tool will soon help different regions align development strategies by reducing overlaps and gaps, and by finding complementarity and opportunities for European collaboration.

P2L2 is an Interreg project with the European Commission. For that reason, P2L2 supports the EC’s National/Regional Research and Innovation Strategies for Smart Specialisation (RIS3). These strategies, among other things, focus on enhancing each region’s particular strengths, competitive advantages and potential for excellence.

The project has a budget of 1,748,206.00 Euros. It will last for four years, running from the 1st of April 2016 until the 31st of May, 2020.

During this time, partners form each region will compare, collaborate and consult each other on how to improve their respective policy instruments. Each will create an action plan which will be executed and monitored during the latter half of the project’s duration.




from 1 Apr 2016
to 31 Mar 2020

Research and innovation

Participant Regions

The Participant Regions

The project has 10 partners from six regions/countries. Every participating region represents a policy tool they want to improve.  


The State of Bremen (Germany) has several policy tools for fostering research, development, and innovation in regional enterprises. This project focuses on EcoMat – a center for eco-efficient materials & technology that involves actors from industry such as Airbus and research. 


The Podkarpackie Province is a region with a strong regional focus on Aviation and Defence industries. Their policy tool aims at constantly involving stakeholders into policy framing, creating medium-term strategies, identifying business and scientific fields of excellence, and developing cooperation projects. 


The Piemonte region in Italy focuses onestablishing advanced materials as key enabling technology across a wide range of industries. Promoting advanced materials as a cross-sectional element of different production processes would boost innovation potential. 


The Aquitaine region (France) focuses on the field of chemistry for developing the competitiveness of advanced materials. 

Their aim is to check whether their strategy is appropriate in terms of creating an innovation ecosystem, industrialising businesses, and demonstrating their crosscutting capacity with other specialization areas. 


Denmark pursues its own Cluster and Network Strategy. This strategy is an attempt to integrate innovation networks at both the national and regional level. The aim is to create an effective framework for knowledge sharing and growth in the networks, while optimizing the delegation and coordination of tasks among the involved public bodies. 


Lithuania presents its Innovoucher LT policy instrument. The aim of the instrument is to encourage business-science cooperation by providing SMEs with a voucher to perform R&D activities with research institutions. Innovouchers are one of the supportive services in the field of Lithuanian advanced materials sector.

What policy instruments does the project address?

The overall objective of this policy instrument is to foster research, development and innovation in regional enterprises in the field of advanced materials as a basis for future growth and job creation. Advanced materials have been identified as one of the priority areas of the Bremen smart specialisation strategy (RIS3) and have developed to be the most important field of activity in terms of R&D and innovation in the Bremen aerospace industry and are also of importance for other major regional clusters such as automotive and wind energy. The transnational ‘materials and processes’ activities of Airbus are managed from Bremen. The region provides important input from its actors for composites, metals, surface technology and assembly. In order to concentrate competencies and R&D infrastructures in this area, the EcoMaT center for eco-efficient materials & technologies is currently being built in Bremen. EcoMaT shall serve as a focal point for cooperation between different industrial based clusters, supporting thus the field of materials science and its engineering applications.

The policy instrument is based on the Bremen ERDF programme in which fostering the development of a competitive regional economy based on knowledge and innovation is one of the key objectives (Bremen ERDF programme, p.5) and the “strengthening of a specialised business driven innovation system” is one of the four priority areas of the programme (Bremen ERDF programme, p. 27ff).

Which partners are working on this?
  • MINISTRY OF ECONOMICS, LABOUR AND EUROPE - FREE HANSEATIC CITY BREMEN (Legal Successor of Partner 3 from 01/07/2017)
  • WFB BREMEN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT CORP. (Partner until 30/06/2017)

Advanced materials is one of the main long-term strategic priorities for Aquitaine. This choice has been recently strengthened by the “Entrepreneurial Discovery Process” (EDP) achieved during the design phase of Aquitaine’s (RIS3). The feedback from the Aquitaine’s innovation ecosystem to the questionnaires, meetings and interviews set-up during EDP by the Regional Council of Aquitaine highlighted the relevance of Advanced Materials as a specialization area for the 2014–2020 programming period (pages 16-18, 118-119 of the main RIS3 document, ratified by the Regional Parliament in its plenary session of 14th October, 2014).

As all other, “Advanced materials” has a first series of common objectives to fulfill:

  • Demonstrate its growth pattern;
  • Demonstrate its cross-cutting capacity with other specialization areas and/or other sectors;
  • Demonstrate its efficiency in fostering industrialization of businesses.

 On top of these base objectives, 3 specific ones were assigned to Advanced Materials:

  • Structuration of the innovation regional ecosystem;
  • Take on board the challenges set by the obligation for an environment-aware sustainable development;
  • Foster the use of advanced materials by businesses for finished or semi-finished products.

Each of these 6 objectives has a certain number of indicators (typically number of projects fulfilling the respective criteria), in order to ascertain the relevance of the specialization area and allow its assessment.

Which partners are working on this?

The primary purpose of this instruments is to permanently strengthen cooperation between the main partners of regional development, strengthening particular developments. (Operational Programme, Piority 1 / Regionalny Program Operacyjny Województwa Podkarpackiego na lata 2014-2020, 3rd March 2015, page 75ff, 288).

The main objectives are: 

  • Identification of the business areas in which it would be possible to have joint action and implementation of innovative projects, including the search for synergies and opportunities for cooperation between regions;
  • Developing a SWOT analysis of the type for a given thematic area dealt with by the Panel, and key success factors ;
  • Creation of a medium-term action plan that shows the successive stages of development of the area;
  • Identify potential sources of financing for the development of economic areas identified by the panel - support from the national and regional level;
  • Formulating recommendations for system support innovation at regional and national level;
  • Identify new areas of R & D & I, which have the potential national / inter and can become smart specialization of the region;
  • Develop specific projects that can be complex, e.g. in national and regional operational programs or to apply for funding from other sources.
  • There is a need to engage as wide range of partners from the region as possible to the entrepreneurial and scientifically discovery process in the region.
Which partners are working on this?

Compared with other EU regions, Piedmont region has identified in a gap-analysis a development potential. The Regional Innovation Scoreboard 2014 places Piemonte as ‘Follower’ region. The Regional Innovation followers perform close to average on most indicators except for Innovative SMEs collaborating with others and SMEs innovating in-house, where average performance is 35% resp. 18% above that of the EU average. The Innovation followers perform less well on indicators related to the performance of their business sector: performance on R&D expenditures in the business sector, Non-R&D expenditures and EPO patent applications is below 90% that of the EU. The Region identifies the fragmentation of productive system -increased by the crisis - the main obstacle to the participation to research and innovation programs, particularly at international level.

 This concrete problem analysis encourages us to cooperate in P2L2 with others which are partially “more advanced” and from which we could learn and in particular to establish “policy learning cooperation”.

 This PI is based on the 'Strategia per la specializzazione intelligente del Piemonte, Asse Crescita intelligente versione 30.06.2015' on page 105, 116.

Which partners are working on this?

Clusters and networks play an important role as drivers of growth and innovation at the local, regional and national level in Denmark. Network organizations help companies to create innovations and commercial viable projects particularly for advanced materials, as well as establishing public-private partnerships, which can yield solutions to societal challenges.

In the regional growth and development agreements among the government and regional growth fora (2012) the guidelines for the Danish Network and Cluster Strategy was established. This Strategy is an attempt to integrate innovation networks at both the national and regional level, thus creating an effective framework for knowledge sharing and growth in the networks, while optimizing the delegation and coordination of tasks among the involved public bodies. The Danish Network and Cluster Strategy is a continuation of previous efforts with the same scope, but is also intended to gather, focus and strengthen all areas of the network and cluster agenda, as well as create synergy among the regional growth fora initiatives and the government’s efforts in cluster development.

 Stakeholders, such as business and employer organizations, research and education institutes/centres and other important actors like 8 Ministries, have been included in a common work group. The Danish Ministry of Education and Science is the head of the common work group of, which is tasked with updating the strategy and implementing changes.

Which partners are working on this?

Programme “Innovouchers LT” aims to promote innovative activities in SMEs, encourage business-science co-operation and commercialisation of public research results. Innovoucher entitles SMEs to buy R&D expertise or knowledge from research institutions. There are three activities supported under the programme: research (industrial or applied research), technological development (experimental or development, design and technological works), preparation of technical feasibility studies. Applicants may receive up to € 6.000 for contracts with research institutions under which specific R&D services may be performed. Companies may choose a service from a list which includes nearly 2000 R&D services of different types. Applicants may get funding for up to 80 percent of total project eligible costs.

The programme speeds up knowledge transfer and commercialization of research results. As a result, companies are encouraged to use the latest scientific achievements in their business. The appeal of “Innovouchers LT” is related to its simplicity and low administrative burden both for beneficiaries and administrators. The programme has been run since 2012.

 In Lithuania there is a growing demand for products and services in the field of advanced materials, which can be supported via the “Innovouchers LT”.

Which partners are working on this?
  • The Government Strategic Analysis Center (STRATA)