Welcome to the selected LA regions for collaboration under the IUC-LAC Project.

Currently the LA regions available for your selection in order to initiate a pairing action for collaboration are: Salta (Argentina)Tierra del Fuego (Argentina) and Puebla (Mexico).


Focus: Meso-region of Altamira

Sector: Cocoa

Economic facts:

□     GDP: R$ 133.576 billion (2016)

□     GDP per capita: R$ 16.165 (2016)

Social facts:

□     Human Development Index (HDI): 0,646 (2010)

□     Population: 8.366.628 (2017)

Key facts of the regional innovation system:

  • The establishment of an innovation system in Pará (and the Amazon) has been lagging behind other regions of the country due to political, geographical, economic and social conditions;
  • In order to create the necessary conditions for a friendlier environment for the Pará innovation system, the state government created the Law No. 8426/2016, to foster an environment that is conducive to innovation;
  • The policy, regulatory and funding environment for STI in Pará are quite recent, in comparison with other states in Brazil.

Key facts of the focused sector: Cocoa

  • The cocoa crop stands out as the main agricultural activity of the 10 municipalities that make up the “Territory of the Transamazonica” in the western part of the state of Pará
  • Since the 1970s, cocoa cultivation has expanded significantly in Pará, due to:
    • Favourable conditions for Cocoa culture;
    • Support of Federal Government projects;
    • Opening of the Transamazon Highway (BR 230);
    • Since then, Pará came to be considered the most important area for the expansion of the cocoa culture in Brazil;
    • Currently, Pará is the country’s leader cocoa producer.
  • “Territory of the Transamazonica” is the largest cocoa producer area in the state of Pará with an approximate production of 35.1 thousand tons, 74.5% of state production
  • The cocoa production in the state increased 35,7% in 2017;
  • The production and commercialization system of cocoa in the region is extremely complex due to:
    • Large number of producers dispersed throughout the region;
    • Logistics;
    • Lack of technical assistance or knowledge transfer in simples process;
    • Structural and financial inability of producers to market the goods on their own;

Lack of governance and sectoral strategy.

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Focus: Meso-region of Petrolina

Sector: Viniculture and Viticulture

Economic facts:

□     GDP: R$ 155.143 billion (2014)

□     GDP per capita: R$ 16.722,05 (2014)

Social facts:

□     Human Development Index (HDI): 0,673 (2010)

□     Population: 9.473.266 (2017)

Key facts of the regional innovation system:

  • The conditions of the socioeconomic development on Pernambuco made it difficult to diversify the productive activities, leading to a late industrialization and:

    o   A reduced demand for innovations from the industry side;

    o   Low interaction between the actors of the innovation system (between companies and institutions).

  • In the last decades, Pernambuco has observed the broadening, diversification and interiorisation of its science and technology base which has encouraged the production of knowledge and scientific and technological competences for the supplying of inputs to innovation in companies.

    Key facts of the focused sector: Viniculture and Viticulture

  • The Viticulture, wine and derivatives cluster corresponds to a total area of 819 hectares, of which 5.128 hectares are dedicated to grape production only.
  • A total of 688 producers work in viticulture (88% of the total cultivated area) – main focused on international markets: the Netherlands (52%), UK (28%), Germany (8%)
  • On the other hand, the viniculture is represented by 7 companies producing fine wine, table wine, sparkling wine and juice, main focused on the internal Brazilian market (12% of the total cultivated area)
  • The total production amount of the cluster was2 million euros in 2016 (grape and wine production), of which 90% came from the production of grape.

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Focus: Entire state

Sector: Information and Communication Technology (ICT)

Economic facts:

□     GDP: R$ 332,84 billion (2014)

□     GDP per capita: R$ 30.264,15 (2016)

Social facts:

□     Human Development Index (HDI): 0,749 (2010)

□     Population: 11.320.892 (2017)

Key facts of the regional innovation system:

  • Innovation intensity in Paraná is higher than in the rest of the country;
  • Innovation: 43,8% of Paraná companies invest in a new or substantially improved process: compared to 38,2% in Brazil;
  • Only 1% of the companies considered important to have a partnership with universities, and 0,6% did some partnership with companies;
  • 15 initiatives related to science and technology parks, 8 of them into operation, focusing on areas such as Agribusiness, Biotechnology, Nanotechnologies and Information and Communication Technologies.


Key facts of the focused sector: ICT

  • The Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector in the state of Paraná is an area of fundamental economic activity for the state economy, representing more than 16,000 jobs in the state;
  • The sector has grown significantly in the last 20 years with the opportunity to introduce management tools in a wide basis of companies so far not computerized;
  • The vast majority of ICT companies in the state provide management tools for the industry and retail, or work as software factories;
  • The current offer of ICT services in Paraná was suitable for the market in the 1990s and 2000, but the market is changing due to:
    • Entrance of large players in management tools (whether global or national);
    • Increasing competition from software companies in countries with more competitive labor costs.
  • With the dynamism of its entrepreneurs, the state of Paraná has achieved significant growth in the IT and Software sector, and currently has six Clusters (APLs):
    • ICT APL of Campos Gerais
    • Software APL of Curitiba
    • ICT APL of Londrina
    • Software APL of Maringá
    • ICT APL of Iguassú
    • IT APL of South-West.

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We are pleased to invite EU Regions to express their interest to collaborate in a pairing action with Salta, located in the Northwest of Argentina together with Jujuy, Catamarca, Tucumán, La Rioja and Santiago del Estero. The region has around 155.488 km2, 1.333.365 inhabitants concentrating 3,1% of the country’s population, and a GDP per capita of US$ 5,492.29 (conversion date: 2014), which represents 1,56% of the country. The Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Production of the Province of Santa formally represents the region in the IUC-LAC Project.

Salta has a strong identity due to its history, culture, economy and geopolitical characteristics. Its international borders with Chile, Bolivia and Paraguay put the region in a strategic position. Moreover, it is positioned at the centre of the Bio-ocean corridor, which comprehends the South American Centre-West Zone. For such reasons, Salta has become centre in terms of commerce, culture and communication in this region of the continent.

Its geographical and climate diversity, together with its human capital, juridical security and policy will, offers a number of possibilities in terms of products and services able to develop the region sustainably. This is the background for developing the Strategic Plan 2030 for Salta, in which all relevant regional stakeholders were involved: civil society, entrepreneurs and industry, government and research.

The main products in the northwest of Salta are related to the agroindustry, including produce such as sugarcane, citrus, tropical fruits, vegetables and wood. This region is known as the ‘Green North’ due to its high temperatures and abundant rain. Cattle rising are a great potential in the region. Finally, the region is also widely known for its production of oil and gas.

To the east of the region of Salta, main produce include cattle and agriculture, mainly crops and intensive production, such as soybeans, cotton, beans, among others.

In the centre, in the Valle Calchaquíes, agricultural practices must be carried out exclusively with little irrigation. Hence, main products are horticultural crops such as garlic, onion, cumin and paprika, and grapes/wine. The region is famous for producing wines of excellent quality and has renowned international brands. In this area, goats and sheep also stand out.

The Valley of Lerma, also in the centre, is a temperate zone. It highlights the intensive exploitation of land mainly with Virginia tobacco crops, while the production of leafy vegetables is located in the “green belts”. In the Sianca Valley, sugarcane cultivation stands out. Dairy is an important activity as well as farm products.

The area near the mountains is optimal for dry crops such as soybeans, beans and corn. Cattle farming consist of breeding and also wintering in those areas that have irrigation availability.

Finally, the west province or “cordillerana region” is famous for mining activities. There are deposits of lithium, sulphur, borates, marble, barite, pearlite, copper, zinc, lead, silver and manganese.

In this context, the productive matrix of the region is composed of:

  • Cattle raising – cattle raising and fattening of cattle for meat, in addition to a developed dairy basin, which does not supply the per capita demand for dairy products. Amongst its produce, stand out the one of small ruminants (ovine, goats) for meat, milk, wool, pigs (production that occupies 6º place at national level), honey, chicken, meat, egg and industrialized products. The typical breeding of horses is that of Peruvian Paso which is recognized for its resistance. The breeding of vicuña is a valuable resource in areas of altitude and aridity. In this sense, INTA (National Institute of Agricultural Technology) acts as a territorial platform, with the challenge to respond to the demands of export-oriented agro-industry. The Salteña Rural Society is also present as support to producers in different activities. Likewise, a headquarters of the CONICET (National Council of Scientific and Technical Research) is active in Salta, which supports the development of policies related to technological linkages, as well as to foster interaction between the scientific and technological sector, companies and public bodies.
  • Agriculture – this sector is key for opening foreign markets as most production is for export. Salta, with its 42 microclimates, allows the exploitation of a wide range of productive options, intensive and extensive crops. Between the intensive ones stand out: tobacco, grapevine, citrus fruit, tropical fruits (banana, mango, papaya, avocado), pepper for paprika, chilli pepper, Andean crops (Andean potato and yacon), parsley and other crops of leaf, vegetables and fruit trees. On the other hand, extensive crops are: beans, corn, soybeans, sorghum, wheat, peanuts, cotton, quinoa, chia, safflower, chickpeas and sugar cane. In this area stands out the Regional Chamber of Production, an institution that works jointly with the provincial state, particularly on the productive potential of Salta and the services attached to production (such as infrastructure, reactivation of means of transport and other).
  • Agroindustry – the government policy aims to generate added value at its source and to consolidate productive chains. An example is the wine chain, where wineries with exportable wines coexist with artisanal wines, which is highly valued by tourists. The wines, particularly the Torrontés grape, emblematic of Salta, are distinguished for being complex wines, thus positioning themselves strongly in the foreign market. Other important value chains are sugarcane, citrus and refrigerated. The latter comprises the chain comprising the production of food, the conversion of vegetable protein into animal, and the packaging of cuts of meat. The INTI (National Institute of Industrial Technology) acts with specific demands and needs of the industrial sector, thus providing mainly advances on innovation and technology development in the Province. It is also remarkable the task of the National Institute of Vitivinicultura, whose headquarters is in the town of Cafayate, which seeks to guide and control the wine industry in an efficient way. It does so towards the development of genuine products that are suitable for consumption, which comply with international standards of quality and, in turn, strengthen the capacities of those involved in wine production.
  • Renewable energy – the availability of renewable energy sources (mainly solar and biomass), reliable technologies and the existing interaction between multiple actors constitutes the great potential of this sector. Salta was the first province in the country to provide an adequate legal framework for the promotion of this sector. Moreover, it has put in place the enactment of two laws that make up the Provincial Plan for Renewable Energy, which goal is to increase the installed capacity from 5.44% of baseline (2014) to 20% in 2030. Salta has the highest insolation rates in the country, which means an enormous solar resource. In addition, a number of policies are in place to promote renewable energy aligning efforts from the provincial Government, its municipalities and the legal security of the Province. Moreover, Salta is one of the main destinations for investments in this area. Finally, INENCO (Institute of Research in non-conventional energy), belonging to the National University of Salta, is the regional Institute responsible for research and technological development in renewable energies.
  • Mining and Hydrocarbons – Salta is rich in petroleum and butane gas. It has deposits of lithium, borax, gold, copper, lead, silver, tin, saltpetre, and potassium, among others. There is a huge potential for investments in lithium (total area of 4,000 km2, almost 4 times that of Singapore). The Province has been historically characterised by its political stability, legal security and promotion of mining activity. The ranking of the Fraser Institute of Canada, in the publication of the 2016 Investment Attraction Index, Salta was rated first in the national ranking as a place to invest, considering its competitive fiscal regime, efficient authorisation processes, the safety of environmental regulations and a excellent system of judicial concession with the most secure provincial Mining Cadastre in the country.
  • Tourism – Salta stands out as the 4th destination of National Tourist Interest. This is the result of more than 15 years of government policies for the development of the sector, understanding its richness and natural landscape diversity ranging from the Andean highlands or puna and Mount Chaco, to the subtropical forest of the Yungas (UNESCO Biosphere Reserve), with hills of colours, vineyards of high altitude, gorges, high peaks, volcanoes and salt flats. There are 28 protected areas, which correspond to 18% of the provincial territory. It also has a great development of routes and tourist circuits integrated with local production; the most prominent are the Wine Route, Route 40, the Artisans’ Way, the Inca Trail or Qhapaq Ñam. This currently makes Salta an excellent tourist product in itself. Moreover, the Catholic University of Salta, through its Research Institute of the School of Tourism, is linked by means of a collaboration agreement extended in order to promote the development of educational, cultural and scientific activities, as well as research on issues of common interest.

In this context, pairing with a EU region shall enable Salta not only to develop its RIS3, but also to build complementarities and promote mutual relations in a few priority industries:

  • In the agro-industry and forestry industry to foster a circular economy able to mitigate the environmental impact they entail, thereby promoting the sustainable (re)use of industrial waste and by-products.
  • In agro-food, to emphasize protein meals and flours (derived from vegetables), since they have the potential to improve dietary protein intake and eradicate malnutrition problems.
  • In the tourism sector two areas of cooperation are proposed:
  1. Public management on themes such as local and sustainable tourism development, favouring the tourist management of municipalities; the creation of a public and private-public management accommodation network; new technological tools that enables intelligence about tourist demand; and competitive legal frameworks for the sustainable development of new modalities of tourism services (such as temporary accommodations).
  2. Private management on themes such as the implementation of quality and eco-management programmes; the development of capacities in the management of sustainable and innovative tourism businesses and the promotion of ventures in international markets; wine tourism; and adventure tourism.

Furthermore, Salta recognizes the EU’s work towards sustainable, intelligent and inclusive growth. It believes that the Province should take the opportunity to learn from good practices and adapt these to its local context and reality, including successful implementation models in Europe.

From this pairing, the Province of Salta will be able not only to implement more competitive and sustainable productive and business policies for local development, but also to create complementarities between the sectors described above. In addition, the structuring of more complex value chains will allow the development of commercial alliances both in Salta and in its EU partner region in order to consolidate new business opportunities.


We are pleased to invite EU Regions to express their interest to collaborate in a pairing action with Tierra del Fuego. The province of Tierra del Fuego, Antártida and Islands of the South Atlantic is located in the southern corner of Argentina, strategically positioned as a natural gateway between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. The region has around 180.000 inhabitants and a GDP per capita of US$ 26,624.70 (conversion date: 2014). The State Secretary of Strategic Planning, Land and Housing Ordering formally represents the region in the IUC-LAC Project.

It is worth mentioning its natural wealth and scenic value, featuring the typical Patagonian steppe in the north, a transition area, and the end of the Andes mountain range combined with forests in the south. Also, its huge economic potential and dramatic population growth, which in the 1980-2010 period amounted to 365% (almost tenfold the country’s average increase).

Its main activities include:

  • Manufacturing Industry: representing 38% of provincial GDP, this sector provides 37% of private employment, with electronics accounting for 80% of all industrial employment. Main factories and medium-sized firms offering transport and logistics services are located in the city of Río Grande, which concentrates 75% of sector employment. Consumer electronics and ICT are well-defined niches for productive improvement, as they can prove competitive both in domestic and foreign markets. However, strong dependence on the strategic benefits derived from the Industrial Subsidies Sub-System established by Federal Act 19640 calls for a reorganization of the provincial productive structure.
  • Energy: the sector is included in the Mines and Quarries item, which represent 16% of GDP. Although it accounts for only 2% of private employment, oil and gas royalties make a substantial contribution to the provincial budget. Tierra del Fuego is the country´s main offshore exploitation region and field operation by world leader companies, which proves high standards of both extraction and capacities within the province. At present, the government is in the process of securing the Fuegian Subtransmission System, in order to transport energy efficiently from Río Grande to Ushuaia. Integrating it to the Argentine Interconnected System will enable important production levels and business opportunities. Exploitation of energy resources is mostly developed in the north of the island, an area that also offers outstanding conditions for renewable energy projects. Having reported high quality wind measures and proved advantages for wind generation, a future wind farm is being designed.
  • Tourism: the province´s scenic beauty, including Ushuaia´s “southernmost city in the world” mysticism, as well as its proximity to Antarctica and opportunities for a variety of winter sports, adventure tourism or ecotourism activities, all constitute major attractions which fascinate visitors from all over the world. With a qualified workforce, businessmen showing group cohesion and strong local roots, and policies that help adapting the province to the new challenges of world tourism, the sector has become the most dynamic service activity in Tierra del Fuego at present. The commerce-tourism complex accounts for 17% of private employment. 90% of tourism activity happens in Ushuaia owing to its natural landscape; however, Tolhuin´s surroundings and sport fishing in the northern of the region constitute huge potentials which could increase micro-destinations and average stay.
  • Fishing & Aquaculture: geographically speaking, Tierra del Fuego is fit for both deep sea and artisanal fishing. Deep sea fishing is conducted by large foreign (freezing) factory ships which catch Patagonian grenadier, southern blue whiting stock, and Patagonian toothfish (of particularly economic interest) for export to Japan, the United States, and France. The province is environmentally optimal for harvest of aquatic organisms, mainly salmonids. Nowadays, the provincial administration and the National Ministry of Science and Technology are jointly making progress towards the country´s first multi-trophic farm. The whole sector is a priority area in terms of greater development potential, although Agriculture, Farming and Fishing only account for 3% of current private employment.
  • Forest Industry: although it produces no significant impact in terms of employment, it has a great potential for supply of furniture and final touches in house and modular house building. It has become imperative to improve processes, and the provincial administration has already started moving in this direction.

On these grounds, the province has prioritized specific activities for the development of each of the above areas aligned with specific government policy. This is also in line with a balanced sustainable development of the whole province. Considering for instance manufacturing industry and energy resource exploitation, both are concentrated in the north of the island and preliminary studies for the construction of the port of Río Grande are currently being conducted. As regards Ushuaia, the expansion of the present pier is currently in progress, as a response to the need for optimal assembly of the touristic-industrial-fishing-Antarctic logistics system, and this will consolidate Ushuaia as a tourist destination and as Gateway to Antarctica.

Furthermore, the provincial administration is now furthering a Beagle Channel development program, which will help boost tourism, aquaculture, fishing, and farming, among others.

It is also important to highlight the valuable contribution made by the National University of Tierra del Fuego, Antártida and Islands of the South Atlantic (UNTDF) — by means of its graduate courses within the Institute for Polar Science, Natural Resources, and Environment; Institute for Culture, Society, and State; Institute for Economic Development and Innovation; and Institute for Education and Knowledge — as well as by the Southern Centre for Scientific Investigations (CADIC), among other investigation centres. The Centre for Investigation and Transfer (CIT) will shortly open in the city of Río Grande in order to promote investigation and scientific technology transfer. It is worth mentioning that strong companies support CIT, which aims to gain global competitiveness.

In this context, pairing with a EU region shall enable Tierra del Fuego not only to develop its RIS3, but also to build complementarities across the sectors in which it already has critical mass and future focus: manufacturing (consumer electronics, ICT, and electronics for aircraft and other transport vehicles), industrialization of natural resources (energy, fishing, aquaculture and forest), and tourism. Moreover, the structuring of more complex value chains shall enable the development of business alliances and partnerships in both Tierra del Fuego and its partner EU region in order to consolidate new business opportunities.

Finally, it is key to highlight that for this pairing action with an EU region, there are two main outcomes that are expected: pairing companies and states for the development of projects that foster mutual businesses in the areas mentioned above, and advance the province´s research and development centres with the support of renowned EU pairing centres.


We are pleased to invite EU Regions to express their interest to collaborate in a pairing action with Puebla, a state located in the Centre-South of Mexico. The region has around 6.169.000 inhabitants and a GDP per capita of 4,321.85 Euros (conversion date: 2018). The Sub-secretary of Planning in the Secretary of Finances and Administration of the State of Puebla formally represents the region in the IUC-LAC Project.

Currently the main challenge of Puebla is to effectively implement the New Urban Agenda in the territory as a tool for planning and innovation. This is key to guide a coordinated and sustainable development for the region. Three specific areas should be considered for building critical mass amongst key actors (civil society, research, government and companies) in the region:

  1. Metropolitan Area of Puebla-Tlaxcala – its virtue is that it houses a large number of schools and universities, with the possibility of becoming a region able to compete for high-level education and citizen formation. This includes forming responsible citizens able to have an active participation and critical thinking, able to face future social, economic and environmental challenges. Another added value of this sub-region lies in its geographic centrality with large urban corridors among different municipalities, among which the metal-mechanic industry in an important one. It also houses a growthing development of ITC activities and different sorts of commerce and services, and due to its geographical advantage it functions as a gateway between large regions.
  2. Military Industry – the installation of an endogenous military industry is considered a development opportunity in the region for interrelated activities as metal mechanic industries. According to the sustainable development goals, particularly objective number 9, the region sees that an investment in infrastructure and innovation is a key engine for growth and economic development. Hence, the installation of a military industry in the region shall lead to the generation of new industrial activities (also in the private sector) and jobs benefiting the nearby regions which also depends on its territorial competitiveness.
  3. Sierra North – in this area the State has another advantage since its resources are of high economic, cultural and social value. Hence, if sustainable practices are carried out aiming at the efficient use of natural aliments and agro-industrial resources, quality products and services as tourism, seeming and profiting from the biodiversity and the bio-economy could be attained with putting the environment at risk, thus leading to a sustainable development in the region.

In this context, a design and implementation of RIS3 based upon the articulation of quadruple helix actors should depart from the above areas of prioritisation and identify investment requirements on education, innovation and technology. Building human capital for sustainable development is, therefore, key. At the same time, finding the appropriate governance mechanisms to engage social actors is also important in order to achieve at regional convergence in terms of selecting quality projects for investments and ensure inter-municipal coordination.

To sum up, key areas for prioritisation within a RIS3 include:

  1. Metropolitan Area of Puebla-Tlaxcala – high quality education. With sound policies and investments, quality education can become the key resource for enabling the region to compete, develop in competitive way the economic activities (metalmecanic, ITC, advanced services) and shorten social gaps such as poverty and inequality, as well as to bring about economic benefits.
  2. Military Industry – models for community engagement associated to value chains, in particular in metalmecanic. It is important to highlight that the installation of the military industry has begun in the Serdán Valley region. The first phase of the project consisted of physically establishing the Secretariat of National Defence in an area that has untapped economic potential as it is a transition area between two states.
  3. Sierra North – active participation of communities in the value chains of aliments, agroindustry and tourism generated by the bio-economy of the mountains. Ultimately, the aim is to reduce poverty and generate a better quality of life for the region inhabitants, as well as elaborate new and better products and tourist destinations for both the internal and external markets without depredation of natural resources and maintaining the important ecosystem services in the region.

Based on the above, pairing with a EU region shall enable Puebla not only to develop its RIS3, but also to share experiences and know-how on how to understand the different capacities and opportunities in order to build a better and robust understanding of the territory. Also, to exchange knowledge, methodologies, models and practices which are carried out in other regions and that contributes to the sustainable development of these regions.

The aim is to build a long lasting partnership and find complementarities in order to face (new) challenges and seek joint opportunities in the above mentioned areas of quality education, military industry associated to ITC, metal-mechanic, agro-food and tourist existing capabilities, and bio-economy.

Moreover, the structuring of more complex value chains shall enable the development of business alliances and partnerships in both Puebla and its partner EU region in order to consolidate new business opportunities. In this regard, there are a number of initiatives of interest to be developed in partnership with a EU partner region which may lead mutual businesses; these are:

  1. Metropolitan Area of Puebla-Tlaxcala – high quality education. A new campus or degrees in a public university in order to offer careers in agroindustry cooperatives, sustainable horticulture, agroindustry economics and marketing, rural sociology, agricultural risk management and clothing design, engineering in irrigation and livestock systems, production methodologies, responsible water use and management, proper management and disposal of solid waste, and usage and care of green areas and open spaces. These should link with programs to improve quality production to encourage small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the agricultural, industrial and commercial sectors both to increase local resources and reduce poverty, thus increasing quality of life in the region.
  2. Military Industry – models for community engagement associated to value chains formalised into a programme for SMEs in the agricultural, industrial, supply and services sectors, with an emphasis on the regions close to industrial zones.
  3. Sierra North – active participation of communities in the value chains (agro-food, tourism) generated by the bio-economy of the mountains. Develop new economic activities enterprises and a university campus and/or degrees on food engineering, textile design and agronomy, as well as in social sciences associated to linguistics and rural sociology for the conservation of local traditions and customs. These are key for a proper management of natural resources, to reduce poverty, and to enable the production of goods and services through innovation and design, thereby bringing higher economic income to citizens in the region.

All these initiatives should be associated to a commercial strategy for the identification and segregation of the market in different groups of consumers, thus recognizing the demands and needs of each group and leveraging a competitive advantage over other markets through specialised SMEs.


We are pleased to invite EU Regions to express their interest to collaborate in pairing actions with the Arequipa region, the third most competitive region of Peru. The region has approximately 1,16 million of inhabitants, with a GDP of around 5,715 million Euros [data of 2014, conversion date of 2018]. The Governor of the State of Arequipa formally represents the region in the IUC-LAC Project.

The main innovation challenges of Arequipa include:

  • To strengthen the competitive advantage and potential of the region, thus supporting technological and non-technological innovation, reinforcing existing R&D initiatives, and stimulating private investment based on State-wide initiatives
  • To build social cohesion with employment and productivity, thus improving citizens’ quality of life
  • To strengthen the region’s main R&D areas in line with the results of its Regional Innovation Agenda so as to foster development in the mining, agroindustry and textiles sectors. The region’s main R&D areas are ICT, biotechnology, environmental technology and material science, which are also the region’s main enabling technologies [for further details on the Region Innovation Agenda please visit: http://agendainnovacionarequipa.com/ (Spanish only)]

To tackle these challenges the region seeks to build on existing competitive and comparative advantages, which include:

  • As mentioned, productive sectors which drive economic growth and with substantial critical mass:
  • Mining
  • Agroindustry
  • Textiles of South American camelids
  • Emerging sectors with promising potential for growth and existing critical mass:
  • Hydric resource
  • Health
  • Renewable energy
  • Tourism
  • Metalworking
  • Presence of public and private institutions, trade associations of water users, and producers of crops, all of whom promote agricultural and textile development in South American camelids
  • Supply of transversal careers in Biotechnology, Materials Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Systems Engineering, Computer Science, Electronics Engineering, Metalworking and Mechatronics Engineering. Arequipa prides in having significant critical mass in these areas
  • Significant number of alpaca and other camelids estates, producers of alpaca (small and medium producers) and alpaca-fibber processing companies (Mitchell, Inca Tops)

In this regard, having already developed a RIS3 strategy, its implementation will leverage the region’s capacity to address the above-mentioned challenges and at the same time it can open up new markets and insert the region in global value chains, thus increasing its competitiveness.

Based on the aforementioned challenges and strengths, Arequipa region seeks to cooperate with EU regions in the development of one or more of the 7 programme types that our Regional Innovation Agenda proposes as strategic for our region:

  1. Development of qualified critical mass to strengthen smart specialization
  2. Implementation of laboratories with adequate equipment and infrastructure
  3. Technology transfer projects related to our main R&D areas
  4. Articulation projects between actors of the quadruple helix
  5. Competitiveness and quality systems projects
  6. Climate change and sustainability projects
  7. Health and social welfare projects

Yours sincerely,

Yamila Osorio Delgado

Governor of Arequipa


We are pleased to invite EU Regions to express their interest to collaborate in a pairing action with Piura, located in the North of Peru. The region has approximately 1,9 million of inhabitants, with a GDP of around 3,470 EUROS per year [conversion date: 2018]. The Governor of the State of Piura formally represents the region in the IUC-LAC Project.

The main innovation challenges in the region include:

  • Increase productivity and added value
  • Climate change management
  • Rural development
  • Strengthen human capital
  • Foster cooperation and partnerships

To tackle these challenges the region seeks to build on existing competitive and comparative advantages in the region, which include:

  • Productive sectors with great potential for growth and exports:
  • Agriculture and agroindustry
  • Fisheries and aquaculture
  • Tourism
  • Geopolitical position
  • Existing universities and research centres
  • Climate and gastronomy
  • Touristic centres

In this regard, the development of a RIS3 can leverage the region’s capacity to address the above-mentioned challenges at the same time it can open up new markets and insert the region in global value chains, thus increasing its competitiveness.

The design of a RIS3 should, therefore, aim to develop an economy less dependent of commodities and the volatility of their international trade prices. Hence, it becomes paramount to add value into the existing agro-food industry through innovation. This should be developed in line with a green economy that is smart and inclusive, thus embracing the three pillars of sustainability.

The envisaged development model should promote new partnerships with quintuple helix actors and amongst firms, as well as the development of clusters of small producers and SMEs. Also, it should foster new and innovative processes and organisational arrangements, as well as new markets investigation and exploitation, and the modernisation of production systems. This includes strengthening an organisational culture for innovation and establishing a change management culture amongst firms. Moreover, it also means promoting efficient and sustainable use of natural resources in the region, such as soil, forest, biodiversity, water and energy.

Ultimately, the objective is to move towards the development of knowledge and technology products and services through research in order to give a leap in performance within existing priority sectors. This requires high investments in human capital development to manage the adequate offer and demand priorities in the region. The latter includes improving educational and STI systems, as well as fostering entrepreneurship and lifelong learning.

In this regard, it is important to reinforce the required interaction between entrepreneurship and academy or research, as key actors of the STI system, thereby creating physical places such a Science and Technology Parks to foster the creation of new applied knowledge.

In order to attain the above-described vision, a new and efficient governance system is key to put in place an economic system based on knowledge and innovation. Furthermore, it is important to reduce the gap of economic and service infrastructures to support the required productive systems in the region and generate citizens’ wellbeing.

In this context, pairing with a EU region shall not only support the Piura region to set the priorities and processes for its RIS3 development, but also and most importantly to foster joint businesses and a long-term win-win partnership. This shall lead to an improvement of the region’s competitiveness and productivity by generating jobs and added value, fostering its internationalisation, as well as improving the quality of life of its citizens; also taking into account innovation required due to climate change. In this regard, Piura is seeking to generate instruments and programs to support the growth of productivity and competitiveness indicators, as well as co-develop business opportunities in its productive sectors of:

  • Agro-food and fish-aquaculture in order to develop added value products for export as well as new medicine and other industrial products via biotechnology
  • Tourism


We are pleased to invite EU Regions to express their interest to collaborate in a pairing action with San Martin, located in the West of Peru. The region has approximately 0,9 million of inhabitants, with a GDP per capita of around 2,300 euros per year [conversion date: 2018]. The Governor of the State of Piura formally represents the region in the IUC-LAC Project.

The main innovation challenges in the region include:

  • Increase the productivity of the main products of the region through technology
  • Increase the flow of sustainable tourism through innovative computer platforms as well as ensuring the protection of the environment with an inclusive policy
  • Reduce Child Chronic Malnutrition and Anaemia in the region through innovative teaching methods and the use of sustainable technologies in sanitation, as well as the implementation of technologies for the targeted detection of affected children
  • Implement a Regional Information System at the level of all public and private actors that make up the San Martin region, which requires the consolidation of both existing and new data

To tackle these challenges the region seeks to build on existing competitive and comparative advantages in the region, which include:

  • Key sectors such as: health, education, production, agriculture, tourism and environment
  • Public and/or private companies engaged in research and technology transfer such as: National Institute for Amazonian Research (INIA), Peruvian Amazon Research Institute (IIAP), San Fernando Company, Palma del Espino, among others
  • National and private universities and technology centres

In this regard, the development of a RIS3 can leverage the region’s capacity to address the above-mentioned challenges at the same time it can open up new markets and insert the region in global value chains, thus increasing its competitiveness.

The region is currently designing an innovation and development strategy to improve the regional competitiveness rating of San Martin with the participation of three government levels (national, regional, and local) as well as public institutions, private companies and the organized civil society.

In this context, pairing with a EU region will support the implementation of the development and innovative strategic approach of the San Martin region, which include three key aspects: Production – Protection – Inclusion.

In this context, among the expected achievements of the pairing are:

  • Strengthen the regional policies of innovation and technological development
  • Implement technology for the industrial and manufacturing empowerment of the main products of the region according to the rules of the European Community
  • Promote the tourist potential through technological resources in order to attract private investment

Furthermore, the region also aims to improve its value chains through technological transference in order to:

  • Increase the competitiveness of its agro-food sector, including the productivity, water efficient use, biology control, seeds, among others, of the main crops and production of the region: coffee, cocoa, rice, palm oil, palm for palmetto, sacha inchi, orange, banana, yellow hard corn, cattle and swine

In the environmental area, the region seeks to:

  • Implement a control and surveillance system of the farming activities and the illegal logging of trees, as well as implement a monitoring and appraisement system of the gas emission for the greenhouse effect in the agriculture and forestry sectors.
  • Attain transference of technology for the treatment of the residual waters and solid waste in order to contribute with the reduction of gases from the greenhouse effect

Finally, in the social area, the region wants to:

  • Reduce infant chronic malnourishment and anemia through the use of targeting technological applications


We are pleased to invite EU Regions to express their interest to collaborate in a pairing action with RAPE (Región Administrativa y de Planeación Especial or Administrative and Planning Special Region). RAPE, located in the Centre of Colombia, comprises the states of Boyacá, Cundinamarca, Meta and Tolima, and Bogotá Capital District. It has around 14.371.343 inhabitants and a GDP per capita of 4.693 Euros (conversion date: 2017). Its Executive Director formally represents RAPE in the IUC-LAC Project.

A RIS3 or Regional Innovation Smart Specialisation Strategy is seen as a contemporary instrument able to support the territory to prioritise areas of specialisation in terms of skills and technology able to leverage its existing potential and strengths into new levels of prosperity and quality of life in the region. This is in line with RAPE’s mission to ‘guarantee the operationalisation of development plans and programmes which are integrated as well as deliver efficient and timely services able to promote new investments and the socioeconomic development of the region, increase the competitiveness of the territory and leverage the wellbeing of its citizens’.

RAPE has already identified priority sectors for investments in terms of RTDI (Research, Technology, Development and Innovation), building on existing competences and future opportunities. These are: tourism, agroindustry, and water resources. In this context RAPE wants to know the experiences of the EU in regional articulation in terms of making decisions for the planning, management, and execution of policies, programs, and / or regional projects of the prioritized sectors.

In this context, RAPE is in the process of designing a RIS3 able to direct its resources in niches of greater potential for productive and competitive impact, thus defining specific actions, knowledge, technologies and measures able to engage the region in global value chains and enable it to enter in new exporting markets. Pairing with a EU region shall enable RAPE to share lessons learned and acquire new knowledge in terms of processes, technologies and tools able to leverage the existing productive competences in the territory.

Also, to access new global markets at the same time it opens up emerging markets in both Colombia and in Latin America. Potentially this shall lead to the generation of new jobs and increased quality of life to citizens in the region. In order to do so, the development and implementation of a RIS3 and associated common activities and pilot projects with its EU counterpart shall lead to mutual benefits. Of specific interest is the generation of new joint businesses and tourism products both in RAPE and its EU peer region.


We are pleased to invite EU Regions to express their interest to collaborate in a pairing action with the Metropolitan Area of Aburrá Valley, located in Antioquia in the Northwest of Colombia, which comprises the city of Medellin and the con-urban municipalities of Barbosa, Girardota, Copacabana, Bello, Itagui, Caldas, Sabaneta, Envigado and La Estrella.

1.- Metropolitan Area of Aburrá Valley

The Metropolitan Area of Aburrá Valley is an administrative entity whose mission is to consolidate the development of the region with functions such as territorial planning, environmental authority, mobility, among others. The region has a population of around 3.731.500 inhabitants and a GDP per capita of 5.500 Dollars (conversion date: 2017). Its Director formally represents the administrative region and its municipalities in the IUC-LAC Project.

The Metropolitan Area of Aburrá Valley has in place an Integrated Metropolitan Management Plan and an associated Project 2008-2020 that envisions the Sustainable Regional Integration and which defines its long-term strategy. Such a strategy aims at strengthening innovation and entrepreneurship in the region, as well as a sustainable development approach able to bring about improved quality of life to its citizens. The strategy is organised around three main themes: i) innovation, competitivity and internationalisation; ii) territorial planning and land use; and iii) information and knowledge management.

Overall, the Metropolitan Area is the result of a territorial associative process between the 10 municipalities that define the Aburra Valley. It’s base is the generation of alliances and strategic projects that promote autonomous, self-sustainable development, opportunities, and high levels of quality of communities, based on a principle of redistribution and territorial equity.

Its strategic lines, include:

  • As the Metropolitan and Mass Public Transport Authority, the aim is to contribute to the integration of metropolitan public transport and the promotion of non-motorized mobility alternatives, taking as reference the active mobility, road safety and regional connectivity.
  • As the Urban Environmental Authority, the aim is to focus on environmental care and protection, management, monitoring, control, sanctions, and environmental and risk monitoring.
  • As the entity responsible for Planning and Territorial Coordination, which promotes integral human development with planning and territorial planning, the aim lies in the construction of infrastructure projects and public space, promotion of the territorial planning, occupation patterns for an economic and social development, with sustainable criteria, health, education, culture and social management.

In this context, the perceived sustainability challenges for the Metropolitan Area of Aburrá Valley are: coordination and articulation of development actors, alignment of territorial development standards and norms, sustainable public mobility, air quality, reforestation, biodiversity promotion within the territory, waste management, security, sustainable construction, and sustainable production and consumption.

2.- Metropolitan Area of Aburrá Valley: RIS3 and priority sectors

Regarding innovation and competitivity, its core challenges are: generate an innovation strategy able to prioritise areas of investment as well as a productive and technology combined structure integrated with existing clusters; build an environment in which new businesses can flourish and existing firms can improve its productivity and competitivity thus creating added value jobs; generate opportunities in order to leverage new sectors such as renewable energy, urban rehabilitation, home care and fight against climate change; and build new skills able to prepare human capital to innovation and knowledge jobs.

Existing clusters in the metropolitan region includes: textile, energy, built-in environment, tourism, health and ICTs. In the last decades the industrial base of the region has developed in terms of human talent, entrepreneurship, productivity, technology development, innovation, and access to financing. This should be capitalised within a RIS3 the region is developing which aims to integrate existing clusters with new industries in order to develop products and services able to open new global markets and include the region in global value chains.

The region is currently identifying areas of prioritisation that can bring about long-term opportunities and increased innovation in the territory, thus helping one to foster a few technologies applied to such specialisation areas combined with a participatory governance system and public-private partnerships. Moreover, the RIS3 is seen as critical to leverage the region towards a knowledge-based economy focusing on technology and innovation, thus generating socioeconomic development based on priority sectors. Building new human capital skills and diversifying the economy are important aspects of such RIS3, as it is strengthening entrepreneurship, productivity and sustainability both in existing and emerging industries in the region. Ultimately, this shall lead to new development opportunities, jobs generation and improved quality of life for its citizens.

3.- Aburra’s Valley and European collaboration

The region is also in the process of detailing projects and actions in order to both refine priority sectors or areas of specialisation and implement its RIS3. In this respect, cooperating with a EU region counterpart should support the Metropolitan Area of Aburrá Valley to develop new business models and opportunities. These should catalyse an entrepreneurship culture in the region as well as generate new business proposals, therefore enabling the region to open new global markets and become inserted in global value chains as well as able to access new financing schemes. At the same time, new emerging markets in the region, in Colombia and in Latin America shall be accessible to our EU partnering region.

Finally, it is worth highlighting the region’s interest to deploy new business opportunities with its EU peer region around sustainability, new sources of energy, mobility and the circular economy, including aspects related to recycling and sustainable construction.


We are pleased to invite EU Regions to express their interest to collaborate in a pairing action with Paraná. The State of Paraná, located in the South of Brazil, has around 11.320.892 inhabitants and represents 6% of the country’s GDP or a GDP per capita of 10.078,93 Euros (conversion date: 2014). Its Secretary of Science, Technology and Higher Education formally represents the region in the IUC-LAC Project.

Paraná has already designed an overall innovation strategy and is in the phase of defining priorities for implementation. This prioritisation process needs to take into account the challenge of connecting, articulating and coordinating quintuple helix actors in order to consolidate value-added and complex value chains able to promote and leverage the region’s global competitiveness.

The designed strategy is based on a business-driven robust diagnosis and mapping of the region’s industrial and knowledge base, as well as of future global trends, technologies and business models. Such an analysis led to a map of opportunities for the region’s companies, which has been widely debated with business representatives and key stakeholders, both public and private. All this lead to a systemic strategic plan for ICTs in the region coordinated with business and economical areas and segments of competence, which consolidates key areas and lines of action able to increase the global competitiveness of the region and enable both existing and new companies to flourish and become global leaders.

The systemic strategic plan for ICTs in the region of Paraná identified 4 sets of key technological families. Also, highlighted trends that are able to impact and propel multiple sectors, economic areas and their segments mutually in a cross-domain perspective. These were translated into specific areas of potential impact due to the existence of an important innovation ecosystem and critical mass as well as considering business opportunities and future drivers of development in the region:

  • Remote management – solutions that enable management of people, teams and goods in distance, including: i) logistics and fleet management, ii) remote management, e.g. oil pipes or energy distribution; and iii) security. Advanced manufacturing or industry 4.0 is a great opportunity in this area. Hardware adaptation for specific solutions as well as the development of concrete solutions and associated services are requirements to enable the development of value-added global chains.
  • Smart management – solutions that enable managing complex, multi-variable and multi-operated systems. These are usually related to the managing of smart cities (e.g. security, mobility, waste, etc.) and grids (i.e. energy and water).
  • E-health – solutions that enable coordinated management for the provision of health services and engage the patient along the process. Includes information storage, access, monitoring and big data analysis for an evidence-based diagnosis as well as distance rehabilitation of patients. Key in this area is the coordination of the whole value chain.
  • Agro-tech – solutions that combine hardware, software, sensors and telecommunications.

Within and across these 4 technological areas, the following technologies have been identified as enablers of greater potential impact in a number of economic sectors and areas in the region:

  • Data Capturing
  • Data Processing
  • Robotics and Artificial Intelligence
  • Networks and Wireless

The above technologies can influence most of the potential areas identified so far, in a cross-cutting and horizontal way and, therefore, are likely to have greater impact in existing prominent sectors in connection with ICTs:

  • Agro-food and agro-business
  • Industry
  • Health
  • Energy

The region believes it is now key to depart from the above strategy and move towards the development of a Regional Innovation Smart Specialisation Strategy (RIS3) able to highlight key priorities and structure both existing and new value chains. This entails developing a clear vision and strategy to enable ICTs as a means of converging the identified strategic areas in the region as well as in defining the relevant nodes in the value chain worth specialising. Also, to enable networking in the region, nationally and internationally, so that new knowledge can be generated and internalised. Moreover, to foster a more sophisticated demand. In a nutshell, all this can lead to:

  • Establishing new legal and regulatory frameworks;
  • Improve business environment;
  • Establish new and increase existing digital infrastructure;
  • Foster specialised RTDI and the adoption of ICTs by citizens and businesses alike;
  • Favour and strengthen education and research in the region.

In this context, pairing with a EU region shall enable Paraná not only to develop its RIS3, but also to build complementarities across the different nodes of selected and emerging value chains in order to develop new businesses, including necessary R&I and necessary channels and applications for market development. Hence, the structuring of more complex value chains shall enable the development of business alliances and partnerships with key institutional stakeholders in both regions in order to consolidate new business opportunities. To achieve this, a number of mechanisms are relevant, such as: technical cooperation agreements; commercial missions; development of joint RTDI projects; development of new capacities and capabilities in selected areas; and structuring of new global value chains which are transdisciplinary, innovative, specialised and market-driven.

It is key to highlight that for this pairing action with a EU region, there are two main outcomes that are expected:

  1. Development of a RIS3 that consolidates all the above technologies, segments, sectors and areas of mutual interest into a well defined forward-looking strategy, identifying complementarities between Paraná and its associated EU region in order to structure and develop new global value chains with associated business alliances and key RTDI partners; and
  2. Detail the RIS3 for the West of Paraná, which comprises 54 municipalities and 64 partner institutions, including Itaipú Binacional, Itaipú Technological Park and PUCPR to mention but a few. Such detailing should lead to a clear strategy for the strengthening of the region innovation ecosystem with a special focus in the energy sector (e.g. renewables, smart grids and metering, distributed and inclusive energy, etc.) and its linkage to ICTs. This shall ultimately lead to the identification and development of a pilot project between Paraná and its EU associated region.


We are pleased to invite EU Regions to express their interest to collaborate in a pairing action with Córdoba. The province of Córdoba, located in the Centre Region of Argentina that integrates the provinces of Santa Fe and Entre Rios, represents 5,94% of the country’s land surface and has approximately 3,5 million of inhabitants (second most populated province in Argentina), with a GDP per capita of around US$ 11,725 (Conversion date: June 2017), which corresponds to 8% of the country’s GDP. Its Secretary of Regional Integration and International Relations formally represents the region in the IUC-LAC Project.

Córdoba is located at the productive heart of Mercosur and between the main ports of the Pacific and the Atlantic in Argentina. It has a number of natural attractiveness such as plains, mountains, valleys and rivers. It has a good differentiation of the four seasons, and has an average in terms of rainfall of around 800 mm. per year. There is a variety of local climates and microclimates that justify the fame and reality of Córdoba as a national tourist centre.

The region is in the process of developing a regional innovation strategy, which currently is mainly located in areas such as agriculture and food industry, metal-mechanic manufacturing, ICTs and tourism. In order to improve its innovation capacity it is in the process of initiating an integrated strategic plan, in which the region envisages to become a platform for innovation. In this sense, the region has commenced the development of regional mechanisms to better connect innovation demand and offer.

Moreover, it is seeking for a renewed approach to regional development towards one able to build on the existing key local assets and focus on enabling policies related to infrastructure, innovation, access to finance and skills to project the province into higher value added segments of production chains. Such a renewed model must be articulated with all relevant actors and developed based upon multilateral governance best practices. This is critical to enable the definition of regional priorities and key technologies that can be leveraged through the efficient use of existing resources and customised instruments able to support the achievement of higher impacts.

In this context, key region assets include:

  • Agroindustry – Córdoba has one of the highest productivity levels globally both in agriculture and livestock, including animal protein. It produces food derived from grains, flours, oils, animal feed, bio-fuels, among others. Córdoba is the first producer of dairy products in the country and the second one in wheat and soybeans. It processes 12% of bovine meats and 70% of corn bio-ethanol in Argentina. At the international level, Córdoba is the world’s leading exporter of peanuts (Mani or confectionery peanut), the world’s leading producer of sweets, and the fifth region in the world in exports of ice cream.
  • Metal-mechanic sector – there are two strong sub-sectors: i) auto parts with strong assets in engineering and workforce; and ii) agriculture machinery with strong technical and technological levels as well as high productivity.
  • Agricultural machinery and agro components: Córdoba represents 35% of the national production. Nearly 500 factories produce tillage equipment, applicators of agrochemicals and fertilizers, grain and forage harvesters, seed technology, fertilizers and services for the implementation of direct seeding, as well as specific software development integrated into agricultural machinery and services.
  • Automotive industry: the Province has the terminal plants of FIAT, RENAULT, VW, Nissan and IVECO. The plant of VW is the second in importance globally in terms of world producer of speed boxes. In turn, Córdoba represents more than 30% of the total national automotive production, has highly qualified human resources and an important network of medium and small industries that manufacture auto parts.
  • Metallurgy – the region has a diversified production of auto parts and 80% of the aluminium foundry in the country, with capacity to supply the naval, railway, construction and aeronautical industries. Córdoba is an important pole in Latin America in the production of moulds and dies.
  • Technology and Software – the region is both a high export of software and supply the needs of the internal market. Córdoba was the first province to declare Software as an industry, which favoured the installation of companies such as Intel, Hewlett Packard, Mercado Libre, among others. It has a growth of more than 34% year-on-year, with more than 300 companies in the field well-organized thanks to the promotion of public-private Technological Clusters with universities. The most important is “Córdoba Cluster Technology” with more than 180 companies. The companies have an export profile with high added value, generate significant synergies with the rest of the productive sectors and have highly trained personnel. They employ around 12,000 people and place their products and services in more than 15 countries.
  • Tourism – the region is the second most important tourist centre within the country and has the potential, the conditions and infrastructure in place to become internationally recognised for its tourism. Córdoba is known for its combination of valleys, pampas, hills, mountains, lakes and rivers. It hosts cultural events as it has a large hotel and multi-space infrastructure. Ingeniero Ambrosio Taravella International Airport is the third most important airport in the country due to the flow of flights and number destinations. Tourism is one of the prioritized activities in the provincial development strategy.
  • Aerospace industry – the state-owned company Fábrica Argentina de Aviones (FADEA) is based in Córdoba (it produced, in the 70s, the first jet aircraft of the Ibero-American world, called Pulqui, as well as the successful turboprop aircraft IA 58 Pucará, followed by the manufacturing of aircraft IA-63 Pampa I, II and III). Both the aerospace industry and its research ecosystem have in the province one of the main developments of Ibero-America, where the first Argentine space satellite (u.Sat-Victor-1) was designed and built by the Applied Research Center of the Aeronautical University Institute of Córdoba. In addition, an earth station of capture and satellite transmission is installed in the region.

In Córdoba, productive competitiveness is closely linked to technology and innovation, with more than 20 Technological Linking Units (UVTs) between the productive sector and academia. UVTs were created and are protected by the National Law 23,877.

The university system has 12 public and private universities, which house around 170 research centres, knowledge transfer and linking groups, in basic, applied and social sciences. The Government of the Province of Córdoba also hosts the Centre of Excellence in Products and Processes Córdoba (CEPROCOR) whose laboratories carry out research, development and scientific and technological links.

Professional training is a priority in Córdoba, there are more than 300 postgraduate programs distributed in different universities. There are also more than 6,000 researchers belonging to universities, the National Council for Scientific and Technical Research (CONICET) and other research centres.

Some of the most relevant areas with scientific and technological capabilities in Córdoba are: biotechnology (in the field of agriculture, the food industry, animal health and human health), food technology (Institute of Food Science and Technology Córdoba -ICYTAC- dependent on CONICET and the National University of Córdoba), and ICT.

In this context, pairing with an EU region and further developing a regional innovation strategy shall improve the region’s competitiveness, thus generating jobs and added value, fostering its internationalisation, as well as improving the quality of life of its citizens. Ultimately, the mutual learning that shall be initiated through pairing with a EU region will support Córdoba in further designing and in moving towards the implementation of its innovation and development strategy. Furthermore, both regions shall be able to jointly identify business opportunities and mechanisms to access, use and monitor international financial resources. Hence, expected opportunities and/or benefits from pairing with a EU region include:

  • Leverage business investments in Córdoba’s well developed system of education, research and technology development, thus improving the linkage between research and innovation in the region;
  • Strengthen the linkages between education, research and innovation local actors in order to connect these to potential export productive sectors as well as to European research centres and businesses;
  • Deploy co-investments in complementary businesses or, in other words, with Córdoba investing in its EU counterpart and vice-versa; in which case the region would strongly foster the establishment of linkages with EU medium and big companies rather than small ones;
  • Investment, commerce and innovation exchange between Córdoba and its EU counterpart should ultimately strengthen both businesses and research and development centres which contribute to improving the competitiveness of such businesses.


We are pleased to invite EU Regions to express their interest to collaborate in a pairing action with CIOESTE, a micro-region located in western area of the State of São Paulo, Brazil. The region has approximately 2 million of inhabitants and a GDP of around 18,639.33 Euros or US$ 20,773.66 [Conversion date: 21.06.2017] . CIOESTE comprises 25% of the information technology (IT) companies located in Brazil and has the infrastructure and interest to increase the number of technology companies in the region. The president of the consortia that formally represents CIOESTE and its interests is the counterpart of the IUC-LAC Project.

To this end, the region sees as a major challenge the need to strengthen is economic development having as a basis innovation and its infrastructure for IT companies. Also, to develop critical mass in terms of knowledge and enhance its R&D capability in order to leverage the region as an organised and globally competitive region, in a sustainable and inclusive way. This shall be key to attract investors for joint investments, which can be initiated either in its counterpart region in Europe or in CIOESTE.

Ultimately, the aim is to develop a regional innovation policy which is robust and able to drive the region towards becoming more innovative as well as globally competitive and thus inserted in global value chains.

Building a strong partnership with an EU region shall help not only the region in developing a clear innovation strategy, but also strengthen its planning and management capabilities in order to bring to the fore socioeconomic benefits to its citizens. To sum up, the main benefits that pairing with a EU region and developing a regional innovation policy are:

  • Establish a regional innovation detailed plan outlining actions required for boosting innovation and socioeconomic sustainable development.
  • Outline required actions and mechanisms to enhance collaboration between private and public sectors.

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  • Enable social inclusion through innovation, education and R&D as key drivers.
  • Leverage regional attractiveness for innovation-sensitive global players.
  • Strengthen regional internalisation by developing new partnerships, cooperation agreements and joint projects between national, regional and international entrepreneurs with clear measurement of economic benefits and results for both regions.
  • Identify priorities to leverage the region’s R&D capability thus generating critical mass to become a globally competitive IT hub and embedded in global value chains.
  • Enable knowledge and technology transfer between both regions as well economic partnerships and the exchange of people.
  • Develop a success case of this cooperation that may serve as a best-case example or benchmark for other Brazilian, LA and EU regions to follow.
  • Open a channel for EU regions to better access Mercosul and for Brazilian regions to access EU.

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We will be showing here a detailed profile of cooperation of Cordoba. It is currently on preparation.

There are already other regions from Argentina which are currently preparing their cooperation profile with other European regions and will be shown here. Please subscribe to our alert in here.

We will be pleased to inform you when the call for expressions of interests will be open.

We are pleased to invite EU Regions to express their interest to collaborate in a pairing action with Chihuahua, a region-state located in northwest of Mexico. Chihuahua has borders to the north with the US, to the east with Coahuila, to the south with Durango, to southeast with Sinaloa and to the west with Sonora. Considered a State in Mexico, it has approximately 4 million of inhabitants and a GDP of around 6,797 Euros or US$ 7,535 [Conversion date: 01.09.2017]. The State sub-secretary of innovation and economic development formally represents Chihuahua in the IUC-LAC Project.

The region understands that its main innovation challenge lies in the generation of an economic development model that leverages increased added value and economic demand for sustained growth based upon:

1) Development, attraction and retention of talent.

2) Creation and development of Micro, Small and Medium-sized enterprises able to retain and evolve its economic capabilities.

3) Embedded innovation and entrepreneurship able to leverage processes and technological development.

This is in line with a collective vision developed in the region, which seeks to develop its innovation capacity in order to generate better jobs for all, increased economic distribution and social inclusiveness. In this sense, the development of a formal Regional Innovation Strategy (or RIS3) is key to bring about better quality of life for all via a new philosophy that includes economic development based on innovation and entrepreneurship.

A robust diagnosis has been developed and outlines the region potentialities, opportunities and vocations. Technologies, sectors and areas in which the region holds competitive advantages and is ready to build critical mass of knowledge, innovation and development, by sub-region, include:

  • Juárez (medical equipment, electronics, automotive, international trade, home appliances, ICTs, metal-mechanics, energy);
  • Chihuahua (aerospace, automotive, biotechnology, tourism, energy);
  • Cuauhtémoc (agricultural machinery and equipment, agroindustry);
  • Delicias (agribusiness, furniture sector);
  • Parral (mining);
  • Nuevo Casas Grandes (agribusiness);
  • Región de la sierra (tourism, forestry).

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Based on the above, the region has been able to identify clear challenges and opportunities that have been guiding a number of initiatives bringing together triple helix actors. These aim to foster small and medium sized new entrepreneurs to flourish in order to tackle the region priorities and develop a local/regional ecosystem of innovation connected to global value chains. Moreover, these also highlight both existing and potential capabilities that can be leveraged through a formalised Regional Innovation Smart Specialisation Strategy (RIS3). Ultimately, such a strategy shall lead to an integrative and development model able to generate value added products and services as well as increased social mobility.

Therefore, building strong ties and collaboration with a European partner region shall help not only the region in further developing a clear and adapted RIS3, but also to generate joint projects and solutions of added economic value and high social impact.

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We will be showing here a detailed profile of cooperation of Bogota-Cudinamarca. It is currently on preparation.

There are already other regions from Colombia which are currently preparing their cooperation profile with other European regions and will be shown here. Please subscribe to our alert in here.

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We will be showing here a detailed profile of cooperation of Salta. It is currently on preparation.

There are already other regions from Argentina which are currently preparing their cooperation profile with other European regions and will be shown here. Please subscribe to our alert in here.

We will be pleased to inform you when the call for expressions of interests will be open.

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We will be showing here a detailed profile of cooperation of Puebla. It is currently on preparation.

There are already other regions from Mexico which are currently preparing their cooperation profile with other European regions and will be shown here. Please subscribe to our alert in here.

We will be pleased to inform you when the call for expressions of interests will be open.