The creation of a group of wood and technology was the brainchild of Bolzano region. Therefore, this project came in the wake of the intense lobby for the area to have a sustainable plan that would adequately meet the demands of its people. The beginning of this project was small but expanded to a membership base off130 companies coming on board, slightly after three years of the project’s lifetime. The entry of corporates has led to an appreciable operation of the project. Currently, the project has over 170 members drawn from the business body. This project is firmly anchored on the precept of robustness to trigger growth, social and economic fulfillment to the citizens. Indeed, there is much to learn from this project as it will unfold in the subsequent sub-chapters.
Problems and ICT Project Development Architect
The wood and technology project is entrenched in providing the basic IT-Infrastructure to implement the project ideas. While the feasibility stage has been acrimoniously passed to have the project into play, the greatest hurdle comes to the identification of a robust system that will coordinate SME’s within the local community. This project is expected to be all-inclusive and will capture the smallest interest of the society, and transform them into viable business objectives. IT-systems would elaborately be possible upon implementation of simpler systems.
At the moment, the current system fails to meet the required interest of the users and is occasioned to multiple failures, thus subjecting the intended users to operational hurdles. The design of a tailor-made ICT network seems to thwart the well-intended course of this project. Therefore, the intervention of Cluster Alpine Network program would be the best solution to the hurdles that the project is likely to face, especially of its IT structure. This platform would advocate for the development of five clusters run by the regional administrators in discharging roles attributed to the project’s scope line. The cluster management team would then be charged with the running of communication and aligning of tasks within the select groups, before issuing their feedback to the primary Programme administrators.
Objectives of the Project
The development and implementation of the Cluster for Wood and Technology are spearheaded by the distinct purpose under which the project is construed. Thus, the primary significance of this project is initiated modernization and expansion of the market for various local enterprises. Also, the entrenchment of a four-tire ICT framework is aimed at instilling precepts of technology transfer with the view of offering a platform for the identification of new products, the prerequisite know-how, as well as different production processes. Also, this project, with the support of regional authority aims to offer the essential support for creating clusters, which often integrates cooperation as well as networking between SMEs, and the mainstream deployed for developmental exercises.
The success of this project is inherent in its application and ability to meet the set objectives. Since it’s a one of a kind projects that is aimed at turning around the fate of the community, its application must be made by its stated objectives. The success of this project relates to the use of ICT platform that will divide the entire population into clusters of 60 individuals. Besides, the incorporation of a new position of cluster manager is expected to meet the full prospects of the project regarding its operationality and implementation.
Indeed, the success of this project depends on the implementation of the Alpine ICT infrastructure within its fold, and this will meet the full obligation of the project in transforming the lives of the community members.
The Alpine Cluster activity
The opportunity of being offered the innovative Actions program was to experiment the broad strategy of how well clusters of 60 individuals can be developed in the traditional sectors of the regional economy of Bolzano. By imagining that the general methodology adopted for the programme management was the same for a success of each area. The theoretical basis focused on the Porters model as a start point for the clustering activities, putting more emphasis on project management and training by use of local ICT tools. The regional authority launched and opened SMEs which submitted cooperation projects for innovation; eight projects were financed finally and that involved 28 companies in various fields of technology.
By exploring South Tyrol, a small Alpine region consists of an employment rate of up to 100% was challenged with fragmentation and weak innovation profile. Considering all the challenges, a strategy based on the idea that without changing decentralization and traditional culture, it is possible to influence the regional economy in working on tangible factors related to human resources, ICT transfer, and enterprise management. To have a newly branded and close partnership between public and private partners, in the promotion of regional competitiveness, clusters have been identified as an appropriate way of providing companies with tools that are dynamic for a corporation, innovation, and qualification. Existing public policies to SMEs are necessary for regional authorities to reconsider in aiming to develop the more service-oriented system. Cluster Alpine network is founded on 3 pillars; 1) the creation of clusters of about 3-5 of at least 30 enterprises working on innovative topics; 2) Development of platforms for networking and services for SMEs in promoting contacts and synergies in developing relevant information to encourage specific know-how of ICT tools; 3) the qualification of entrepreneurs and cluster managers so as they improve their capacities in project management in various fields of marketing, networking, and cooperation, innovation and technology transfer.
To involve and to motivate the SMEs, cluster initiative policy ensures it is providing business-oriented actions and conclusive results. To achieve the results, the regional authorities have therefore launched three open calls for inviting SMEs to submit projects for innovation.
The wood sector is a combination of traditional handicrafts, and modern technologies and the markets have proved so crucial in the success of the innovation. Wood manufacture is mainly developed by family companies that are always looked upon to maintain folk traditions and values. The cooperation was put on the job of discovering topics that would complement the innovations such as well-being, sustainable buildings, light and acoustic optimization. Beyond ICT introduction, a significant change was cultural. Therefore, public policies in supporting SMEs and strengthening the ability of public/private partnerships to promote innovation were created. Furthermore, the University of Bolzano has created a two-year training course, “the Management Academy” which has developed an interest in the region.
Wood and ICT has apparently been involved in sustaining clusters for principal concerns for the managers of the programme who decided to focus on well-established regional sectors. The Alpine Cluster Development Methodology adopted wood together with other areas which were structured in phases. The Cluster involved entrepreneurs from the beginning through various public campaigns that were organized, to encourage networking and recognizing new topic within the regional sector of the economy. Wood Technology Cluster was approved on July 8, 2008.
The wood sector is the proper choice for cluster development. It is important to focus on the subject so as to provide unique position, competence to companies to join the initiatives. When you react to the needs of the clusters and solve small but quite concrete problems, benefits are quickly realized. A right balance approach is a right way to develop cluster initiatives for innovation. Cluster management development is perceived to be management by trial and error.