The Regions4Food peer review process of Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences (FI) consisted of two partners reviewing our Action Plan, and three Action Plans to be reviewed by our stakeholders.

Our Action Plan was reviewed by stakeholders and partners from Andalusia and Emilia-Romagna. Our draft stage actions were about

  1. developing the regional innovation center
  2. education and knowhow
  3. and combining data from different sources.

Good practices from Andalusia

We were happy to receive feedback and ideas to all our actions. From Andalusia we had four separate peer reviews of all the previous themes, with the the implemented Good Practices that were: The Andalusian Agrotech Digital Innovation Hub; Master “DigitalAgri” Universities of Córdoba and Málaga; Master in Digital Agriculture and Agri-Food Innovation, University of Seville; Fiware zone.

Good practices from Emilia-Romagna

From Emilia-Romagna we had a meeting, where we had the opportunity to hear the reviews and tips from the point of view of both of these implemented Good Practices: The ClustER Associations in Emilia- Romagna - ClustER Agrifood; ITS Tech & Food. Within all of these, we also had the presentatives of the project partners, who also provided their insight to the Action Plan. 

A fruitful exchange of ideas

In each meeting we had very good conversations, valuable feedback and ideas to developing the Action Plan. We were also able to have local key actors, who are working with the themes of our actions in our region, to participate the online meetings as well, to hear the feedback and ideas directly from the partner regions stakeholders. We found this very useful, and it also helps in developing the actions in our region. 

From Finland to other Regions in Europe

Our Good Practices that were implemented by other regions, were AgroLivingLab and Frami Campus & Food Forum. Especially AgroLivingLab was found interesting and implementable by other partners, and the quadruple helix -model that they represent, is very timely subject. The core of the feedback from the action plans considered practical arrangements, communication tips and lessons learnt from the Good Practice by the persons who were working in the project. All of the reviewed Action Plans were very well structured, and the Good Practice was included in interesting Actions that seemed the serve very well the regional needs ja objectives. Reviewing the Action Plans of project partners also gave valuable lessons and new ideas to developing our actions, and that has to be seen as an output itself.

all the stakeholders, the owners of the good practices, have participated and invested their time and knowledge to participate the peer review process in this new way

Let’s face it – it would have been very nice to travel to meet the partners and stakeholders in person and network more deeply. But it must be recognized how wonderfully all the stakeholders, the owners of the good practices, have participated and invested their time and knowledge to participate the peer review process in this new way as well. The process has gone smoothly and in excellent cooperation, with very good discussions and valuable reviews and tips to proceed with the actions. The interregional cooperation in the project is still going strong, and the project has been agile to adjust the activities to match the global situation. 

Soila Huhtaluhta

Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences, FI