Annual Fraunhofer ISI RIS3 Survey

Since 2013, Fraunhofer ISI has conducted annual surveys of policy maker's perception of the European Commission's RIS3 agenda, starting from general assessments (2013) and views on options for implementation (2014) on to concrete questions on obstacles, monitoring and the need for interregional collaboration (2015).

About one year after the formal approval of most RIS3 documents and of the launch of the implementation of most ESIF programmes, the European Commission's Directorate‐General for Regional and Urban policy has triggered a continuation of this effort by the procurement of a fourth round of the by now established empirical exercise.

Close to a year after the formal completion of most ex‐ante relevant strategies and at a time when more and more action plans are moving towards completion, thes study takes a first look backward in an appraisal of which lasting changes the RIS3 agenda may have brought in regional or national innovation policies. Following the formal strategies' approval, it remained to be analysed if the momentum created by the ex‐ante conditionality has in fact translated into relevant processes in the real economy (as envisaged by the smart specialisation concept) or whether, after ex-ante compliance, many exercises have come to a halt or faded away in silence.

On a practical level, therefore, this 2016 round of the Fraunhofer ISI RIS3 survey focused on the compilation of views on the substance of processes of "entrepreneurial discovery" which were envisaged as the new approaches key moment in the smart specialisation literature and, in a slightly modified version, put as a stipulation for RIS3 strategy approval.

A summary of the project's findings can be found in the resulting policy brief here.

A summary of the survey's 2018 results and findings can be found here.




  • European Commission, DG Regional and Urban Policy