Under the relevant proposal for a regulation, the existence and implementation of a smart specialisation strategy is also an enabling condition for implementing interventions under European Union (EU) cohesion policy in the area of research, development and innovation (R&D&I). “Good governance of national or regional smart specialization strategies” as set out in Annex IV. to the proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council laying down common provisions on the European Regional Development Fund, the European Social Fund Plus, the Cohesion Fund and the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund and on the financial rules for these funds and for the Asylum and Migration Fund, Internal Security Fund and Border and Visa instrument (COM (2018) 375).
The EU sets out seven fulfilment criteria for this enabling condition against which the ongoing fulfilment of the enabling condition is assessed. These criteria state that the smart specialisation strategy must be based on:
- An up-to-date analysis of bottlenecks for innovation diffusion, including digitalisation.
- The existence of a competent regional/national institution or body, responsible for the management of the smart specialisation strategy.
- Monitoring and evaluation tools to measure performance towards reaching the objectives of the strategy.
- The functioning of cooperation with stakeholders (the “entrepreneurial discovery process”).
- Actions necessary to improve national and/or regional research and innovation systems.
- Where relevant, actions to support industrial transition.
- Actions to strengthen cooperation with partners outside the Member State within the priority areas supported by the smart specialisation strategy.
All regions of the European Union processing RIS3 have the opportunity to join the European S3 platform: https://s3platform.jrc.ec.europa.eu/home so that they can work together and exchange their experiences.