On 21st March, the Swedish Agency for Regional & Economic Growth organised a seminar in Stockholm for the Swedish EUSBSR network. 64 representatives from Swedish ministries, national agencies, regional authorities and other stakeholders engaged in the implementation of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR) took part. Baltic Development Forum/Top of Digital Europe was invited for presentations and participation in a panel. Co-author Joakim Wernberg, Lund University, presented the 2016 State of the Digital Region Report, giving a snapshot of the digital performance of the region. Torben Aaberg from BDF introduced the work with digitalization within the EUSBSR, including analysis and policy papers developed within Policy Area Innovation, as well as examples of transnational collaboration projects within the digital economy.
The Swedish EUSBSR network is an excellent example of how stakeholders can be mobilised for ongoing discussion on topics of joint interest in the strategy implementation, on a policy as well as a practice level. As BDF has previously highlighted towards the European Commission, the Swedish network could serve as a model inspiring similar initiatives in other Baltic Sea Region countries.
The Swedish Agency for Regional & Economic Growth (Tillväxtverket) has been among BDF’s closest collaboration partners for many years. Operating on behalf of the Ministry of Enterprise & Innovation, the agency is responsible for coordinating the implementation in Sweden of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR).