Eurada News nº391 – August 2019

Two MOOC online courses to better design your Smart Specialisation Strategies

For the period 2021-2027 you will have to redesign your RIS3. We suggest you to follow the MOOC courses intended for public regional policymakers. EURADA members have use this online training to upskill internal staff and connected stakeholders. This training is useful to review the governance of RIS3 strategies and implement better monitoring systems.

Smart Specialisation is a complex system for innovation policy governance that boost regional innovation, contributing to growth and prosperity by helping and enabling regions to focus on their strengths. Smart Specialisation is based on partnerships between business, public entities and knowledge institutions. Smart Specialisation Strategies (S3) contribute to the Europe 2020 objectives of smart, sustainable and inclusive growth by enhancing EU regional and national potential in research and innovation.

Below two high quality MOOC proposal that the staff of your Regional Development Agency might be interested:

  1. The Massive Open Online Course on Smart Specialisation Strategies developed by the BAK S3 Association will start on 7th of October 2019, and offers an overview of the concept and methods to design and apply smart specialisation strategies. Contrary to previous years, this year the course is exceptionally offered free of charge.

The lecturers Dominique Foray (EPFL) and Martin Eichler (BAK Economics) will use theories and case studies to explain the practice and implementation of a smart specialisation strategy during the 11 weeks of the course, attendance of the course entails every other week approximately one hour of presentations; in addition 30 minutes of exercises and two hour’s assignment. There are practical cases from the Basque country (in cooperation with Orkestra), Crete and Värmland. Kevin Morgan from the University of Cardiff takes part in the 2019 edition as well. This course is especially intended for public policymakers on the regional, national and international levels, in Europe, North America and Asia.

Course structure:

The MOOC is composed of five modules, each comprising four to five units. After each module assignment a peer reviewing process has to be done. Each of the participants will have to hand in the module assignment and will have to evaluate another peer’s assignment. Furthermore, in case studies policymakers and experts will be invited to present and share cases they have managed themselves or in which they have participated. Students and researchers will be invited to propose cases identified in the course of their research work.


  1. JRC MOOC on monitoring Smart Specialisation strategies. The MOOC is open to anyone interested in monitoring knowledge-based regional development and in particular Smart Specialisation Strategies. The MOOC will answer some of the key questions related to monitoring of Research and Innovation strategy for Smart Specialisation (RIS3), addressing conceptual, policy and empirical aspects.

By participating to this MOOC you will learn:

  • The principles underpinning RIS3 and RIS3 monitoring;
  • The nature of the core-indicators relevant to monitor RIS3;
  • The potential data-sources needed to monitor RIS3;
  • The role of stakeholders in monitoring;
  • The tactics for a successful use of monitoring.

Manly, by the end of the course you will understand why there is no shortcut to monitoring, and why it is crucial to develop a good monitoring system.

This course is suggested for Civil servants working on regional development at the regional, national and European level and consultants in regional development or research and innovation policies.


By participating to one, or both of the free of charge MOOC proposal, you will have the possibility to improve your skills and knowledge on Smart Specialisation Strategies, moreover you might be able to get valuable contacts on this sector and profit from the expertise of the professors. Many experts from RDAs have already attended these two MOOC training during the past editions.

Written by Giacomo Frisanco, Project and Communication Officer