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Science and Technology Parks (STPs), Innovation Cities, or Innovation Clusters constitute regional innovation ecosystems, where actors from the public, private, financial, and academic sectors (sometime called the Quadruple Helices) co-exist in a synergetic way, benefitting from shared infrastructure and the physical proximity. If properly governed and managed, STPs can serve as a platform for the production and transfer of knowledge, the conception of new innovative products, technologies and services, and, subsequently the conquest of local and international markets, resulting in job creation and economic development.
Not surprisingly, many countries have invested in STPs as a part of their innovation and industrial competition policies. In practice, however, we see that STPs not only are challenged by the complexity of STPs and by orchestrating the STPs different stakeholders (e.g. Universities, Industrial Residents, Government Agencies and Financial Actors, like banks, Business Angels or VC-firms). STPs also require adequate structures for auxiliary entities, such as“Incubators” and “Accelerators” to support the commercialisation of new ideas, and business start-ups. Likewise, both public and private sectorneed to have on-site, research laboratories and technology centres, which results should be disseminated and valorised by “Technology Transfer Offices”.
In 2015, CMI, ISESCO and the Technology Centre at the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) organised a first workshop in the El Ghazala Technology Park, Tunisia, on the performance measurement of STPs, not only as real estate enterprises, but as an innovation ecosystem that nourishes the performance of their residents, by using the Business Model Canvas. This resulted in a follow-up workshop, organized by the Egyptian Academy of Scientific Research and Technology (ASRT) and ALECSO, which objective was to define a set of Key Performance Indicators (KIP) for Arab STPs in order to assess their scientific performance. The workshop concluded with the selection of 30 KPIs for Arab STPs, to measure input, output and impact.
In this frame the Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO), the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the Center for Mediterranean Integration (CMI) are organizing a regional workshop on "Performance Indicators for Arab Technology Parks, Innovation Cities and Clusters" between April 18 and 20, 2017 in Smart Villages, Cairo, Egypt.
The national partners of this event are the Egyptian Academy of Scientific Research and Technology (ASRT) and Smart Villages.
The workshop aims to enlarge the set with indicators to measure the quality and performance of STP' infrastructures and its different tenants and how they contribute to local economic development. The workshop will serve as a platform, where STP' managers and STP' tenants (universities, industrial tenants, research institutes, incubators, technology transfer offices, technology platforms, venture funds, research centres and entrepreneurship networks) will share their experiences in order to draw lessons about what is essential for them as a member of the STPs ecosystem and what metric could be used, not only to measure their performance but also the contribution that the STP has on their performance.
The workshop will gather some 30-35 participants from the MENA region, of different backgrounds: