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On 24-26 February 2020, the Baltic Sea Region conference ‘Innovation – Power of the 21st Century’ was held in Riga, Latvia. The conference was combined with the activities of the Baltic Sea Region Interreg project. Smart-Up BSR is a community in the Baltic Sea Region that enables the regions to engage with partners and to apply the potential of research and innovation in practice.
Andris Sternbergs, a full member of the Latvian Academy of Sciences and a professor at the University of Latvia (left) and Prof. Jūras Banys, President of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences
The Smart-Up network reaches out to the experts of EU RIS3, the EU Committee of the Regions and Joint Research Centre. It is concerned with fostering bottom-up regional innovation. The Latvian Smart-Together with the Latvian Academy of Sciences, Smart-Up BSR project partners – the University of Latvia, the Ministry of Education and Science, and Liepaja University – invited entrepreneurs, representatives of public authorities, research institutions, and municipalities to participate in the event. The first day of the conference was dedicated to the discussion of the implementation of innovations in companies and research institutions. Vaira Vike Freiberga, President of the Republic of Latvia (1999–2007) was the patron of the event and gave the opening speech in which she analysed the current situation in the Baltic Sea Region, the need for innovation, and its importance. In the second speech, Marc D’hooge, a representative of the European Investment Bank, spoke about the measures undertaken by the EIB with regard to the Baltic Sea Region. Professor Risto Nieminen, President of the Finnish Academy of Sciences, spoke of Finland’s experience in the field of research and innovation. He emphasised that in its agenda ‘Finland 2030’, the Finnish government resolved to invest no less than 4% of its GDP in scientific research and experimental development by 2030.
Jūras Banys, President of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences
‘Innovation in Lithuania’ was the speech given by Prof. Jūras Banys, President of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences. The event was also attended by the representatives of the Ministries of Economics, of Finance, and of Education and Science of the Republic of Latvia. The conference adopted a declaration focused on the promotion of the collaboration between the academies and research institutions of the Baltic countries and raising public awareness of the most recent scientific developments.
Information of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences
Photography courtesy of Jānis Brencis