SmartEIZ conference
Smart Specialization Strategies: Contemporary Challenges of its Design and Implementation
September 25-26, 2018, Zagreb, Croatia

The objective

The aim of the SmartEIZ conference is to address contemporary challenges of designing and implementing the Smart Specialization Strategy across Europe. Even though S3 is a promising approach, which in the EU is supported by the Structural Funds, there is not a lot of evidence on neither how S3 is being implemented nor on its effects. In addition, the issue of adequacy of priorities, chosen by different countries, may in itself lead them to suboptimal outcomes. The conference will explore the influence of an institutional framework on the implementation of S3, the influence of S3 on the development of industry 4.0., as well as the influence on future industry. What does an analysis of the implementation of programs within the S3 framework in Europe tell us? Even more, the conference will explore topics that emerge from the S3 framework and which are important in the context of functioning of industrial policy and innovation policy in national economies. These are: the importance of innovation and technological change and its influence on the general level of well-being and distribution of income; how does the innovation system work in terms of interactions between different categories of actors, and how does globalization and international interactions affect the working of the innovation system?

By bringing together distinguished academics together with senior policy makers and young researchers from the partner institutions on SmartEIZ project―University Bocconi, UNU MERIT and UCL―the conference will explore contributions which emerged during the implementation of this project. Also, conference planning will bring contributions which reflect new findings related to the Smart Specialization Strategy, as well as findings relevant for future industrial and innovation policy.

List of topics

1. Design and implementation of the Smart Specialization Strategy

2. Topics relevant for the Smart Specialization Strategy

3. Innovation system and its interaction with different categories of actors

4. Globalization, internationalization, and innovation systems

Keynote speakers:
  • Bart Verspagen – UNU MERIT, Maastricht, Netherlands
  • Alasdair Reid – European Future Innovation System Centre, Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium
Important dates:
  • Extended abstracts of the papers should be submitted by July 15, 2018, whereas the final version of the paper should be submitted by October 15, 2018.
  • Please submit your abstracts to