Summary of the project

SMEs present the biggest potential for the employment and job creation in the BSR also in
future. QUICK aims at unleashing this potential to its full extent by addressing the following
challenges undermining the competitiveness of the BSR SMEs:
- limited benefit from innovation processes and R&D solutions
- low qualification of entrepreneurs and employees, and the labour force in general
- limited internationalisation of SMEs and difficulties in accessing new markets
- lack of strategic support for SME development in the framework of regional and national
policies.


QUICK offers structured and coordinated approach to increase the innovation potential of
BSR SMEs. The BSR level cooperation between the SME promoters and universities is
established and enhanced. Cluster based cooperation is used to facilitate development and
implementation of R&D solutions in SMEs, as well as upgrade the existing vocational and
academic training programmes. Cooperation of SME promoters, universities, decision makers
and public administrations is used to develop comprehensive SME support strategies and put
them into action on local, regional, national, BSR and EU level.


The particular outcomes of the project will be:
- establishment of the permanent network of the BSR universities dealing with innovation and
R&D, the Baltic Sea Academy
- continuous cooperation between the network of the SME promoters (chambers and
associations) of the BSR, the university network and the decision makers and public
administrations in the field of innovation support in SMEs: joint identification of innovation
clusters, mapping of competence centres in the BSR, development of cluster strategies
- qualification upgrade of entrepreneurs, SME employees and potential employees by
developing and implementing 5 new and upgrading 5 existing advanced training courses, and
new dual bachelor study programmes in the different BSR locations
- establishing structured cooperation between the SMEs and the universities as R&D service
providers to promote development and implementation of new product/service, technology,
process and organisation related solutions in the SMEs
- improvement of services provided by the SME promoters by establishing web based
networking platforms, ICT tools, developing methodological and practical guides
- improvement of the overall SME related policy framework by developing and implementing
BSR wide strategies in four policy areas: economy, education, regional development and
spatial planning and innovation promotion.


Project will reach as many as 400.000 SMEs and release further R&D based investments by
the SMEs. Estimated value of those is at least 20 MEUR.