Exploring the Northern Dimension

ND newsflash

Northern Dimension in 2030 – How to grasp the opportunities and fight the challenges?

The second Northern Dimension Day took place in Stockholm, Sweden, back‐to‐back with the 7th Strategy Forum of the EU Strategy…

Baltic Leadership Programme on Youth and Bioeconomy

Do you work in the field of bioeconomy and are you interested in how to integrate youth perspectives into your everyday work? Are you looking for innovative solutions to foster the necessary transition from a fossil-based to a bio-based society and economy? Are you a member of a youth organisation with a strong engagement in the field of bioeconomy and sustainability?

The Baltic Leadership Programme on Youth and Bioeconomy addresses the need to better integrate younger generations into the field of bioeconomy. Youth (up to 30 years of age) are vital for renewing and innovating the sector, which is necessary in the transition from a fossil-based to a bio-based society/economy. Today, however, there is a lack of necessary links and methods for attracting and involving youth.

In response to this, the Swedish Institute, together with its cooperation partners, is developing a training programme to tackle the challenges of youth participation in the bioeconomy sector.

Main cornerstones of the programme
  • Inclusion and cooperation
  • Peer learning and mentoring
  • Network building

Crosscutting themes
  • Stakeholder involvement and multi-actor participation
  • Complex thinking (sustainability and stakeholder models – setting up interlinkages)
  • Communicating complex ideas
 
How do I register?
The application period is 29 June–22 August 2018. Follow the link to submit your application.
For more information contact Gabor Schneider, gabor.schneider(at)si.se, Tel: +46-8-453 78 59, Mobile: +46-732-318521
 
Is my organisation eligible?
The programme is targeting representatives of youth organisations as well as those of organisations working with bioeconomy in the Baltic Sea Region. We look forward to receiving applications from Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, Sweden, Iceland as well as the German states of Brandenburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Schleswig-Holstein and Hamburg.

Programme timeline
Digital Kick Off: 24 October 2018, (13–14.30 CET)
Module 1: 21–23 November 2018 in Stockholm
Online Session: 10 January 2019 (13.30–16.30 CET)
Module 2: 21–23 January 2019 in Vilnius
 
More informetion here (link)

EuroAccess: New portal to EU funding is now online!

A new portal, EuroAccess,  has been launched acting as a gateway to EU funding, providing the key data of more than 200 EU funding programmes, including (but not limited to!) all Interreg programmes that operate within the geographical scope of the EU macro-regional strategies. Potential applicants can look for open calls for project proposals and filter results based on their type of organisation, their country of origin, and the thematic focus of their project idea, amongst others.

EuroAccess is based on the success of DanubeAccess, which promoted funding opportunities from the geographical area covered by the EU Strategy for the Danube Region. Over the time it has proven to be a success, therefore, it is now extended to all four EU macro-regional strategies – the EU Strategy for the Adriatic and Ionian Region, the EU Strategy for the Alpine Region, the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region and the EU Strategy for the Danube Region. The updated online platform, covering all four EU macro-regional strategies, was launched on 25th June 2018.

Check out the portal now: www.euro-access.eu.

Finland to chair HELCOM next two years

Finland’s Chairmanship of the Baltic Sea Protection Commission (Helsinki Commission HELCOM) started in the beginning of July. The key task of the two-year Chairmanship is to update the Baltic Sea Action Plan launched in 2007. Measures should be included that enable to achieve a good environmental status for the Baltic Sea by 2030.
 
On the Finnish initiative HELCOM will prepare a regional nutrient recycling strategy for the Baltic Sea. The aim of the strategy is that valuable nutrients are in efficient use and prevent them from being lost to waters. Practical measures will be included in the Action Plan to reduce nutrient inputs.
 
Climate change will maintain, or even increase, eutrophication in the Baltic Sea. It will also have impacts on the distribution of living organisms and attaining the objectives set for the protection. The work of HELCOM must be further strengthened to understand the impacts and minimise harm and damage. Climate change and adaptation will be one of the key issues in updating the Action Plan. HELCOM activities are to be linked to a wider context for work on sustainable development, i.e. implementing of the goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Baltic Rim Economies 2/2018 Published

The Pan-European Institute publishes a discussion forum, Baltic Rim Economies (BRE), which deals with the development of the Baltic Sea Region. In the BRE review, high-level public and corporate decision makers, representatives of Academia as well as several other experts contribute to the discussion.
 
The latest Baltic Rim Economies (BRE) issue includes articles on new opportunities in Nordic cooperation, economic development of Russia and the importance of core network corridors, among others. You can read the latest issue here: BRE 2/2018

SAVE THE DATE: The Future of the Baltic Sea Region Cooperation - Focus on the Council of the Baltic Sea States (CBSS), 23 Nov 2018

SAVE THE DATE: BALEX will organise a half-day conference on 23 November 2018 at 2PM-6PM, in Turku, Finland. The event is organised in cooperation with EUSBSR HA Neighbours.
 
THE FUTURE OF BALTIC SEA REGION COOPERATION
Focus on the Council of the Baltic Sea States (CBSS): Current Challenges and Perspectives

The absence of institutionalized legislative bodies with authoritative power, along with the complexity of transboundary policy challenges, have created space for new types of governance and cooperation in the Baltic Sea Region. Today, there is a great number of governmental and non-governmental institutions and actors, including the EU, involved in Baltic Sea Area governance and cooperation. One of them is the Council of the Baltic Sea States, CBSS, that has set up a Vision Group to create recommendations for a vision for the Baltic Sea Region beyond 2020.
The purpose of this half-day conference organized by the Baltic Area Legal Studies (BALEX) competence cluster, in cooperation with EUSBSR HA Neighbours, is to discuss the challenges facing the Baltic Sea region cooperation and the CBSS, and to share information about the CBSS in the light of the report of the Vision Group work, taking into account Baltic Sea Area governance structures more generally.
 
The registration for the event will open in August.

The speakers of the event include:
Marko Joas, Professor of Public Administration, Coordinator of the research project BaltReg, Åbo Akademi University
Timo Koivurova (chair), Research Professor, Director, University of Lapland
Anne Kumpula, Professor, Dean of the Faculty of Law, University of Turku
Maira Mora, Ambassador, Director General of CBSS Permanent Secretariat
Zaneta Ozolina (tbc), Professor of Political Science, University of Latvia, Rapporteur of the CBSS Vision Group
Allan Rosas, Judge at the European Court of Justice, Chair of the BALEX Advisory Board
Astrid Thors, former Minister of Migration and European Affairs, former OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities, Member of the CBSS Vision Group
Petteri Vuorimäki, Senior Expert, European External Action Service of the EU, Chair of the CBSS Vision Group
Adam Wisniewski, Professor of Law, University of Gdansk
 

Report on the Baltic Sea Region Economies: Progress and Priorities Launched

Baltic Development Forum (BDF) has commissioned a report on the Baltic Sea Region economies. The report looks back at the economic journey of the BSR countries in the past 20 years. The report is written by Dr David Skilling, Director of the Landfall Strategy Group.
 
Over the past two decades, the Baltic Sea Region – from the Baltic states to the Nordics – has developed into an integrated, high performing economic region.  It is called the ‘top of Europe’ for a good reason.
The Baltic Sea Region economies have performed strongly since 2000, out-pacing many of their European peers.  As a group, they have averaged a GDP growth rate of 2.7% relative to 1.6% for the EU28 as a whole.
And even in a challenging post-crisis environment, the Baltic Sea Region economies have performed well – growing faster than many other crisis-hit European economies, as well as the broader EU group.
 
Read the report here.
 

NCM Publication: Baltic 2030 Bumps on the Road: How the Baltic Sea States are performing on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

The report Baltic 2030: Bumps on the Road provides an overview of the 2030 Agenda implementation in the Baltic Sea Region, aimed at informing strategy and prioritisation discussions for national and regional collaboration. For each of the region’s eleven countries, performance on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is examined and five selected SDGs are discussed at the indicator level. Based on this analysis, the authors recommend seven avenues for action where greater collaboration in the region can support SDG achievement. The report was commissioned by the Council of the Baltic Sea States (CBSS) and is jointly published by CBSS and the Nordic Council of Ministers (NCM). It was drafted by the advisory firm Nordic Sustainability and follows the previous Bumps on the Road to 2030 report published by the NCM in 2017.
 

OPEN CALL: REFINERY 2018-2019 - Refinery of Sustainable Cultural Tourism Products in the Northern Dimension Area

OPEN CALL: REFINERY 2018-2019
Refinery of Sustainable Cultural Tourism Products in the Northern Dimension Area

The project is looking for participants from the field of tourism and creative industry to develop sustainable cultural tourism products and services

Application deadline 25.5.2018
Open to applicants from Finland, Sweden, Norway, Russia, Lithuania and Germany

WHAT IS REFINERY?
The project enhances the collaboration between the tourism and creative industries within the Barents and Baltic Sea regions. The main target is to create sustainable cultural tourism products and services to each participating region. The project brings professionals from the creative field and from the tourism sector together and organizes service design workshops where participants create new ideas for products and services together.

PROJECT ACTIVITIES
The set of three service design workshops includes the basic knowledge of service design, its concepts and methods. The approach is practical. Participants develop ideas and make “fast and dirty” service prototypes together. Workshops are led by facilitator and service designer Elisa Lahti MA (Master of Art and Design). She has several years of experience from various workshops, including service design, product development and professional identification.

SCHEDULE
Information letters to the selected participants 8/18-9/18
1. Workshop Petrozavodsk, Karelia, Russia 10/18
2. Workshop Vilnius, Lithuania 12/18
3. Workshop Rovaniemi, Finland 2/19 or 6/19
Final task for participants 9/19
Participants provide a description of developed/tested services/products 11/19

WHO CAN APPLY
Professionals from the creative field and from the tourism sector, individuals or organisations, with an idea or pilot project and strong interest to develop new products or services to the field of cultural tourism from Finland, Sweden, Norway, Russia, Lithuania and Germany.

HOW TO APPLY
Participants can apply with an informal application letter with the brief description of the service/product they are willing to develop during the project. Maximum length 1 A4.

Send the application with a title “Refinery application” by 25th May to Refinery –project assistant ninni.korkalo(at)gmail.com

PROJECT COVERS
The project will offer three moderated workshops (Petrozavodsk, Vilnius and Rovaniemi) and provide participants with meals (mainly lunches and coffees) and accommodation during their stay in above mentioned cities. Project budget does not allow for a daily allowances or airport transfers but you can contact our project team about travel costs reimbursement.

Project is supported by Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland and operated by Ministry of Education and Culture, Arts Promotion Centre Finland in co-operation with regional cultural authorities.

Call announcement (PDF)

Additional information:
Ninni Korkalo, Cross-Art Collective Piste, +358408312314, ninni.korkalo(at)gmail.com

Katja (Ekaterina) Rakkolainen, Arts Promotion Centre Finland, +358295330853, katja.rakkolainen(at)taike.fi

Maritime activities in the Baltic Sea assessed in HELCOM report

HELCOM released in March 2018 the most comprehensive assessment of maritime activities in the Baltic Sea region currently available – covering distribution of activities at sea, developments over time, related environmental issues as well as future perspectives and scenarios. The vast number of activities addressed include operational and accidental pollution from maritime traffic, fisheries, aquaculture, offshore energy production, cables and pipelines, submerged hazardous objects, and leisure boating.

Read the HELCOM Maritime Assessment 2018here.

Call for projects that put culture at the heart of Baltic Sea cooperation and empower the future-builders of the region

Call for projects that put culture at the heart of Baltic Sea cooperation and empower the future-builders of the region: Call open from 15 February – 31 March 2018

Regional Identity is a long-term priority of CBSS aiming to develop and foster the concept of a belonging to the Baltic Sea Region through engagement, dialogue, people-to-people contacts, networks and multilevel governance. We would like to see projects that focus on either one or all of the following: culture, education, children and youth.

Projects for, with and by children and young people are highly valued. The projects shall aim to strengthen children and young people’s influence and participation in organisational, cultural, and educational settings (international labor and student mobility, improved common education and labor market) and to strengthen a sense of “we-feeling” in the Baltic Sea Region.

Cultural co-operation in the Baltic Sea Region has many facets and we welcome projects driven by the highest artistic quality, as well as where culture is used as a force to build bridges across borders, as well as social and political differences. The declaration of the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018 offers a fantastic opportunity to focus on Baltic Sea Region cultural heritage. Looking at our common history fosters mutual understanding and is an important prerequisite for jointly tackling the challenges the Baltic Sea Region faces today.

What are the platforms for cooperation on education in the Baltic Sea Region in the future? CBSS has for years devoted attention to higher education, with projects within this field still remaining of high interests. We also welcome projects in other fields within education and projects that address the need for a strategic approach toward education in the region.

To qualify for funding, projects must also reflect dimensions of sustainable development and the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Projects supported should provide space for both professionals as well as ordinary citizens to get involved and make their voices heard. Respect for the inviolability of human dignity – regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation or disability is implicit and every project should take gender mainstreaming into consideration.

Project Support Facility (PSF) in brief:

  • The projects should be transnational in character and aim to have a sustainable outcome.
  • The maximum amount of co-financing granted is 65 000 euros.
  • The project proposals may be initiated by individuals, groups, organisations, institutions, associations and companies in the CBSS Member states, as well as CBSS Expert Groups and CBSS Networks.
  • The granted projects should have the potential to become a basis for a network, partnership or cooperation model that would become viable beyond the duration of the project life itself.

Apply by 31 March 2018

Read more at: www.cbss.org

Baltic Development Forum has published its State of the Region Report 2017

A new overview of the Baltic Sea region has been released by the Baltic Development Forum. The three authors Christian Ketels, Helge J. Pedersen and Mikael Olsson analyses the Baltic Sea Region economy and assesses the state of the region, thus helping decision makers and observers inside and outside of the Region to navigate in a challenging environment.

The 2017 State of the Region report is divided into 4 main parts:

  1. Economic Outlook
  2. Baltic Sea Region Competitiveness
  3. The Subnational Regional Perspective
  4. Baltic Sea Region Cooperation

“The Top of Europe – A Competitive Baltic Sea Region Ready for the Future?” is available here.

Call for Applications: Baltic Sea Youth Dialogue, 20-26 Nov 2017, Helsinki and St Petersburg

Baltic Sea Youth Dialogue

Is this you?

  • Studying to be a teacher.
  • Between 20-30 years old.
  • Interested in history and regional cooperation in the Baltic Sea.
  • Ready to learn, discuss topics linked to the history & current affairs in the Baltic Sea Region
  • and meet new people with similar interests.
  • Come from Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway,Poland, the Russian Federation, Sweden, Belarus, France, Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States of America.
  • Fluent in English.

A gathering for future teachers interested in Baltic Sea Region history and cooperation.

  • Are you studying to be a teacher?
  • Are you looking to expand your network and meet inspiring people from the region?

The Baltic Sea Youth Dialogue invites you to increase your knowledge and get inspiration for your future work as a teacher!
 
Baltic Sea Youth Dialogue 2017

Baltic Sea regional cooperation is vital for tackling the challenges of today and finding solutions for tomorrow. Baltic Sea Youth Dialogue 2017 aims to bring regional cooperation into perspective engaging future generations.
Therefore, we offer a week-long session of seminars and workshops to students from the Baltic Sea Region and beyond. The Baltic Sea Youth Dialogue 2017 will take place in Helsinki (4 days) and St. Petersburg (3 days) and focus on history, culture, politics and the need for cross-border cooperation.
 
Apply at bit.ly/BSYD17by 22 October 2017.
 
We will contact the selected participants shortly after.
Accommodation, catering, transfer from Helsinki to St. Petersburg will be provided by the organisers and the reimbursement of travel expenses is guaranteed up to 200 EUR for each participant.
 
A detailed programme for the Baltic Sea Youth Dialogue 2017 will be available shortly.
We also invite you take a look at the previous editions of the Baltic Sea Youth Dialogue at
www.cbss.org/regional-identity/baltic-sea-youth-dialogue.

‘BONUS call 2017: Synthesis’ call is now open

A competitive ‘BONUS call 2017: Synthesis’ call is now open. Proposals are invited until 9 November 2017 for transnational desktop-studies of up to 18-months and EUR 450 000 of funding. Mandatory preregistration for all applicants is a month earlier on 9 October 2017.

What is expected from a synthesis project?

Knowledge synthesis is central for knowledge translation from research community to practice and for ensuring evidence-based decision making. This call sets out to synthesise the research outputs that address the challenges for sustainable use of the Baltic Sea ecosystem services. As inherent elements of knowledge synthesis, the proposed projects are expected to perform critical review of research outputs as well as identify the knowledge gaps and further research needs. Each project funded will be also expected to analyse how successfully the outputs of science have been taken up at different levels of public governance and management, and by industry, and suggest ways to enhance the societal significance and impact of research and innovation relevant to the specific topic. Topics selected for this call extend across the strategic objectives and themes of the BONUS strategic research agenda (SRA); they require an interdisciplinary approach and shall therefore be examined from different angles, e.g. natural science, technology, economy, social aspects.Projects are expected to analyse as broad body of research outputs as necessary for robust and unbiased review and credible gap analysis, including, but not limited to, the outputs of research done within BONUS. Wherever possible and appropriate, projects are expected to apply systematic review methodology, combined, where necessary, with a narrative approach. If not stated otherwise, each project is expected to produce as its deliverables at least three review papers devoted to different aspects of the problem, each accompanied by a policy brief(s) distributed to the potential users in a targeted manner as well as appropriate, popular dissemination materials targeting broad society.

Link to the Bonus Call.

In the core of BONUS is a long-term collaboration that supports sustainable development and implementation of HELCOM’s Baltic Sea Action Plan, the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive and other national, regional and European policy developments.

BONUS is funded jointly by the eight member countries around the Baltic Sea and the EU by a total of EUR 100 million for the years 2011-2020. A total of 40 projects have received BONUS funding by August 2017.

New EUSBSR Newsletter available

Newsletter from EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region has been published.

Main topics:
The 9th EUSBSR Annual Forum will be organised in Tallinn, Estonia, on 4-5 June 2018;
Some improvements have taken place at the EUSBSR website;
The group of National Coordinators (NC group) is the overall coordination body for the development, implementation and policy monitoring of the EUSBSR;
And more...

Read the EUSBSR Newsletter here.

10th Baltic Sea Tourism Forum 2017, Turku, Finland

Date: November 2-3, 2017

Venues:

  • Nov 2: Radisson Blu Marina Palace Hotel, (Linnankatu 32, Turku)
  • Nov 3: Aitiopaikka (Itsenäisyydenaukio 2, Turku)

Objectives of the 10th Baltic Sea Tourism Forum 2017

The anniversary Forum will be dedicated to ‘The Future of Baltic Sea Tourism’ as the principal theme. Visit Turku and the City of Turku, the Regional Council of Southwest Finland, Visit Finland and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment of Finland will host the conference, in close cooperation with the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Tourist Board and Policy Area Tourism of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea region as constant organisers of the Forum.

The 10th BSTF will provide a mix of policy issues and several practical approaches for peer learning and exchange. Keynotes regarding trends in tourism and the future of Destination Marketing Organisations will be complemented by case-studies, good practices and seminars, which will provide room for sharing ideas and knowledge across the BSR.

Special focus will be given to future and trend topics like digitalization, tourism financing, funding, education and transnational cooperation. Moreover, in the light of the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, sustainability will become an integrated part of the forum.

In addition, the forum will again offer the possibility for projects and initiatives to showcase their pioneering ideas of transnational and cross-border initiatives to boost the visibility of existing sustainable approaches of international cooperation.

The cultural programme of the 10th anniversary will provide pleasurable space for exchange combined with unique experiences for guests and participants of the Forum.

Programme and registration: balticseatourism.com

Questionnaire on futures of tourism in the Baltic Sea region in 2030

The 10th Baltic Sea Tourism Forum is dedicated to the theme ‘The Future of Baltic Sea Tourism’. We invite you to begin the discussion on this theme by completing this questionnaire:

Link to the questionnaire

The questionnaire asks you to reflect upon the probability and desirability of six statements concerning possible futures of Baltic Sea tourism in 2030. It takes about 10-15 minutes to complete.

The responses will be collected and categorised for a second round which will take place at the Forum in Turku. The results from the two rounds will be utilised in future Baltic Sea Tourism Forums and other development projects. The questionnaire is commissioned by the organisers of the Baltic Sea Tourism Forum and made by Finland Futures Research Centre.

Please feel free to forward this invitation to complete our questionnaire. Everyone interested in the possible futures of the Baltic Sea region is welcome to share their insights.

Thank you in advance for your response.

ScanBalt Forum 2017 (Tallinn)

Date: 18 October 2017
Venue: Energia avastuskeskus, Põhja pst 29, Tallinn

ScanBalt Forum 2017 presents and discusses ongoing activities of the EU Baltic Sea Region strategy flagship ScanBalt and accelerates new ones, coordinates between projects and promotes synergies.

Overall ScanBalt Forum targets the strategic objective of ScanBalt “BSR as one test and development site for health care products and services”.

The Forum this year pays special attention to digital technologies and health data in a Baltic Sea region cross-border perspective, commercialization and how to integrate entrepreneurship in education and export of educational methods.

The organizers of ScanBalt Forum 2017 are Tartu Biotechnology Parkand ScanBalt. On a rotating basis ScanBalt Forum moves from region to region as an annual event.

It costs only 75 EUR to participate in this day filled with discussion and planning for the future.

ScanBalt Forum 2017 is organized in partnership with the “Health in the Digital Society. Digital Society for Health” conference in Tallinn, which focus on how digital technologies and wider use of health data are changing our lives and the ways of healthcare.

Draft program (changes can occur)

09:00 General Assembly and ExCo for the association ScanBalt fmba (by invitation, members only)
10:00 Opening by Chairman of ScanBalt, Jaanus Pikani – Key messages to the participants
12:00 Lunch 13:00 Commercialization in Health Care – BSR as one test and development site (Chair Gudrun Mernitz, BioCon Valley)
14:30 Coffee break
15:00 Entrepreneurship and education in HealthCare – Export of knowledge (Chair Peeter Ross, Tallinn University of Technology)
16:30 Preparing for the future

For more information, a more detailed programme and registration please see the ScanBalt Forum 2017 website.

Seminar “Financing the Future of Energy Efficiency”, Riga.

Save-the-date 5th October in Riga

How can green investments be financed to accelerate the transition to a carbon-free economy in the most cost-effective way? How are energy efficiency solutions applied, which financial schemes are used, and what are the different experiences on financing energy efficiency across the countries in the Baltic Sea Region?

Baltic Development Forum in close collaboration with the Council of the Baltic Sea States/Baltic 2030 (HA Climate), Ministry of Economics of Latvia (PA Energy/EUSBSR) invites you for a regional seminar “Financing the Future of Energy Efficiency” on 5th October 2017 in Riga.

The aim is to take a Baltic Sea Region perspective on how to exploit the full potential of energy efficiency by demonstrating good examples across the region and showing ways to tap into the region´s potential through transnational knowledge, expertise transfer and enhanced regional cooperation.

The seminar will focus on financing energy efficiency with tfehe aim to shed light on the experiences in applying energy efficiency solutions and various financing schemes used differently across the region. To learn from each other and to build the knowledge required to address the challenges incurred by climate change.

The event will include different viewpoints on how financing of green investments should be realized in the most cost-efficient and commercially viable way. This will include the European policy perspective as well as financial institutions, banks and the industry perspective. Cases with best practices on financing energy efficient solutions, including ESCO models, will be shared to find the best possible solutions to the existing challenges with the tested financing schemes.

The seminar is targeted towards national and municipal organizations, cities, policy and commercial banks, industry representatives working with climate change and energy efficiency solutions.

Interested?

Proceed with the registration here.

Stay tuned for further updates on the programme.

DRAFT PROGRAMME
12.00 Registration. Lunch
12.45 Welcome
Flemming Stender, Director, Baltic Development Forum
Krista Kampus, Senior Adviser and Head of the Sustainable Development Unit – Baltic 2030, Council of the Baltic Sea States

13.00 Key-note by the State Secretary of the Ministry Economics of the Republic of Latvia Juris Stinka – Setting the Scene

13.10 Financing green investments
Paul Hodson, Head of Energy Efficiency unit, DG Energy, European Commission (tbc)
Rafal Rybacky, Head of Public Sector Operations in Poland and the Baltic States, European Investment Bank (tbc)
Patrik Marckert, Senior Manager, Energy & Environment, Nordic Investment Bank
Victor Gancel, Flagship Manager Low Carbon City Lab, Climate-KIC Nordic
Mats Olausson, Green banking expert, SEB (tbc)
Reinis Bērziņš, Chairman of the Board, Altum (tbc)

14.50 – 15.15 Coffee break

15.15 – 16.20 Panel on best-practices, including ESCO models
The panelists are to be confirmed. We will hear the views from the following countries:
Norway: Hallvard Benum, Energy Ingineer, Kongsberg municipality
Finland: Päivi Laitila, Head of Energy Efficiency Unit Motiva
Denmark: Køge municipality
Sweden: Sinfra
Estonia: KredEx
Lithuania: Housing and Urban Development Agency

16.30 Summing up and steps ahead

Open Call for Companies to Access Free Analytical Research

The Baltic TRAM project offers companies free access to state-of-the-art analytical research facilities across the Baltic Sea Region, providing technical and scientific expertise to help solve challenges associated with developing new products or services. The project now accepts applications.

Companies selected for support will receive scientific advice tailored to their specific business needs. More precisely, they will be provided with free measurements of material samples on micro, nano- or molecular scale, and consultations with experts in analytical research facilities and research institutes. Through these services, companies will be able to upscale the knowledge of their materials’ properties and help improve their product portfolio or in-house manufacturing processes.

A network of Industrial Research Centers (IReCs) stand ready to provide support in the process. The IReCs are business-support units that can help applicants throughout the entire application process - from formulating a product or process challenge to designing follow-up activities that support the companies in applying the knowledge gained in their product or manufacturing processes.

Companies based in EU member states are eligible to apply. To initiate the procedure, contact a national Industrial Research Center (IReC) for consultations. More information about the process, as well as contact details to the IReCs is available here.

Baltic TRAM is an international project, partly funded by the European Union’s Interreg Baltic Sea Region Programme. The overall objective is to boost innovation, secure the implementation of smart specialization strategies, and encourage entrepreneurship by supporting small and medium-sized enterprises, thus contributing to the regional effort of making the Baltic Sea Region innovative, sustainable and competitive.

 

www.baltic-tram.eu

Seminar: A new momentum for Nordic-Baltic co-operation in a turbulent Europe?, Copenhagen

Brexit, Trump, refugee crisis and a changing global economy are challenging Europe. Where does that leave the Baltic Sea Region and what is the potential to tackle these challenges via stronger regional cooperation? Can the small, open economies in the Nordic-Baltic region respond with a common voice to influence the future of Europe?

Baltic Development Forum and the Nordic Council of Ministers have the pleasure of inviting you to a seminar on 23rd August 2017. Dr. Christian Ketels will present a recent paper on the future of Europe and globalization. Five Danish Ambassadors from the region will comment and debate.

Date: Aug 23, 2017
Time: 10.00-12.00
Location: Nordic House (Ved Stranden 18), Copenhagen, Denmark

Programme
10-10.30 Coffee, tea and registration
10.30-10.40 Welcome by Dagfinn Høybråten, Secretary General of the Nordic Council of Ministers
10.40-11.00 Keynote by Dr. Christian Ketels, Principal Associate from Harvard Business School and co-author of “The Future of Europe and Globalization: Where is the Voice of the Baltic Sea Region?”
11.00-12.00 5 Danish ambassadors address the issue from their respective points of view:
Mette Kjuel Nielsen, Iceland
Hans Brask, Latvia
Dan E. Frederiksen, Lithuania
Torben Brylle, Norway
Ove Ullerup, Sweden

Moderator Per Carlsen, Senior Advisor, Baltic Development Forum, Ambassador (ret.).

Sign up for the seminar here.

For more information, contact: Louise Hagemann Phone: +45 21 71 71 41 Email: loha(at)norden.org

International Conference: eHealth Innovation Days 2017, Germany

Come and visit the eHealth Innovation Days!

The second eHealth Innovation Days will take place at Flensburg University of Applied Sciences (FUAS) on 7th and 8th September 2017.

The conference will bring together academics, citizens, patient-groups and also eHealth developers and small companies from around the Baltic Sea Region in their common interest to explore the full potential of eHealth innovations. It will offer a platform for networking, initiating new partnerships and exchanging knowledge and experiences. The interesting sessions and an exhibition will reveal different aspects of eHealth, ranging from education to usability and innovative services.

The sessions will focus on:

  • eHealth in the Baltic Sea Region
  • Consumer-centered eHealth services (interactive workshop)
  • How to teach eHealth (panel discussion)
  • Innovative projects and companies
  • User involvement and usability

Excellent speakers from the Baltic Sea Region, Great Britain and Belgium will attend the conference and discuss with the audience.

The eHealth Innovation Days are a great opportunity to discover new developments and innovations in eHealth and discuss with experts the future of digital health.

For further information, please visit the conference web page.

Kaliningrad Wastewater Treatment Plant officially opened

The long-awaited wastewater treatment plant in Kaliningrad started operations on 7 June 2017 at full capacity. The construction work of the plant was completed in 2015, and since then the plant has been taken into use step-by-step. The handling and disposal of wastewater sludge that was a condition for the operations was ready in May 2017.

The construction of the wastewater treatment plant was started as early as the 1980s. The project has been delayed for years, it has met with many obstacles, and the construction work was been suspended several times. It was not until December 2007 when the Russian Federation confirmed its funding for the project and the Financing Agreement of the Northern Dimension Environmental Partnership was signed. The project also includes the drinking water treatment plant in the eastern part of the city (EUR 35 million), which should be completed in 2018.

Kaliningrad wastewater treatment plant is very good news for the Baltic Sea, because until very recently, this city of almost half a million people was pouring 150,000 cubic meters of raw sewage into the sea every day. What has been in the making for more than forty years is now up and running.

Sources: Ministry of the Environment and Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland and Nordic Investment Bank.

BSR Policy Briefing: The EU-Russia relations and their reflections in the Baltic Sea region - Some recommendations for policy-makers

BSR Policy Briefing: The EU-Russia relations and their reflections in the Baltic Sea region - Some recommendations for policy-makers

By Stanislav L. Tkachenko

Since the early spring 2014 the European Union-Russia relations are in a deep crisis. Re-evaluation of principles and aims of the EU relations with Russia has been done at the level of communitarian structures in Brussels as well as by all EU member states. Multiple Russia’s attempts to destroy unity of the EU countries regarding rejection to recognize integration of Crimea into Russian Federation have failed. EU member states and the Union’s structures see Russia as fighting actor in the bloody conflict in Eastern Ukraine, but Russia ignores these claims. Current stalemate situation requires innovative steps for restoration of dialogue between the two entities. First of all, it is crucially important for the Baltic Sea Region as the only area where the EU and Russia have common land border. Future dialogue should be grounded at principles of mutual rejection of economic and visa sanctions, as well as on confidence-building measures, especially in hard-security issues. New Foreign Policy Concept of Russian Federation, which was adopted on November 30 2016, provides solid political and legal ground for these initiatives.

Read more on the Centrum Balticum's website.

From 2013 onwards Centrum Balticum has published BSR Policy Briefing series. Articles of Baltic Sea Region experts dealing with topical and significant issues of the region are published in the series.

Baltic Rim Economies 6/2016 published

The Pan-European Institute publishes a discussion forum, Baltic Rim Economies (BRE), which deals with the development of the Baltic Sea Region. In the BRE review, high-level public and corporate decision makers, representatives of Academia as well as several other experts contribute to the discussion.

The latest issue of the Baltic Rim Economies (BRE) review was published on the 19th of December 2016. This issue includes, among others, articles “Standing by Ukraine” written by the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, ”The future we want for the Baltic Sea region” by President of Finland 2000-2012, Tarja Halonen, and ”Thinking and acting internationally is in the DNA of Turku” by the Mayor of the City of Turku, Aleksi Randell.

Read the latest issue: BRE 6/2016

Promoting clean shipping by learning from sulphur regulations - project Envisum

Air pollution control of ships is receiving a lot of attention. While international organisations and governments have been actively fighting greenhouse gas emissions from industry and cars since the 1970s, ships were tackled only at the beginning of this millennium. Decreasing sulphur emissions has been in focus for the past years with a step-wise tightening of sulphur limits in fuelling ships. The Baltic Sea is a forerunner and test region for tighter limits. The cooperation project EnviSuM looks into the effects of the latest sulphur-limit tightening on human health, environment and the economy, namely the shipping sector.

Centre for Maritime Studies of the University of Turku is the lead partner of the Interreg project.

Read more on Interreg Baltic Sea website or visit the EnviSuM project page.

HELCOM meeting: Greenlighting assessment tools and indicators for State of the Baltic Sea report

​​​​​​​Delegations representing all Baltic coastal states as well as the EU meet this week at HELCOM headquarters to discuss and decide on the best measures for improving the Baltic marine environment.

The meeting participants will face major decisions required for completing HELCOM State of the Baltic Sea report Draft Recommendations on sewage sludge and conservation of underwater biotopes and habitats are expecting agreement. The 2-day meeting will also discuss the final plans for the HELCOM high-level segment on ocean-related Sustainable Development Goals, taking place on 28 February 2017.

Read more on the meeting, its targets and future work on HELCOM website.

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