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PLOCAN, with the support of the Fundo Regional para a Ciência e Tecnologia (Regional Science and Technology Fund) (FRCT) of the Azores government, has organised a round table on Blue Growth with researchers from the University of the Azores (including the Institute of the Sea and the Okeanos centre), the Sea Observatory, the Regional Directorate of Fishing and a range of regional companies interested in knowledge transfer in the marine-maritime field (Sailazores and seaExpert) in the lecture hall of the Hotel Horta, on the island of Faial (Azores).

In the framework of the project “Inter-Regional Co-operation for the Smart Growth of the MAC Regions” ( RIS3_Net), PLOCAN is taking part as the co-ordinator for designing and implementing the sub-project “Blue Growth”, aimed at characterising and driving R+D+i in Macaronesia related to the European Commission’s blue growth strategy. The different actions envisaged by this pilot initiative include holding several working meetings with the research community of Macaronesia, in order to identify and analyse the barriers they face in carrying out their R+D+I projects in the marine-maritime field and the opportunities offered by inter-regional co-operation in the Madeira, Azores, Canaries space.

These working sessions, held both in Canaries and the Azores, are also aimed at discussing mechanisms that help to socio-economically promote regional R+D+i concerning blue growth and to identify possible practical co-operation projects and actions in the MAC Space in the marine-maritime field.

The next working session will be held at the end of October on the island of Madeira, bringing the round of meetings with key stake-holders in the sector to a close. The contents and conclusions will form part of the characterisation study of the marine-maritime R+D+i system of Macaronesia currently under construction. This working methodology, posed and used by PLOCAN in the area of blue growth, is also being used by the partners of the RIS3_Net project in Azores (FRCT) and Madeira (ARDITI), in order to implement their respective pilot projects on sustainable tourism and agro-industry.

Co-ordinated by the Canary Island Research, Innovation and Information Society Agency, belonging to the Canary Island government, the RIS3_Net Project is co-funded to the tune of 85% by European Regional Development funds through the first call for projects for the Interreg MAC 2014-2020 programme and its final purpose is to create a Trans-Reginal Platform for the smart specialisation of the MAC space that brings together the resources, actions and tools available, by driving a socio-economic promotion of R+D+i.

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