Expertise / Projects

The V-LINC research group has experience working on European and Nationally Funded Cluster projects across the following countries.

V-LINC analysis has been undertaken on clusters in the following sectors & regions:

  • BioPharma in Wallonie, Belgium: Partner(s) - BioWin and Service Public de Wallonie
  • Tourism in Gaborone, Botswana: Partner - Botswana International University 
  • Finance in Shanghai, China: Partner - University of Valencia
  • Cosmetics in Bogota, Colombia: Partner - Bogota Chamber & University del Rosario
  • ICT in Nicosia, Cyprus: Partner - Cyprus Computer Society
  • Mining in Pyhäsalmi, Finland: Partner - University of Oulu
  • ICT in Paris, France: Partner - Systematic
  • ICT in Karlsruhe, Germany: Partner - CyberForum
  • Agri-food in Cork, Ireland: Partner - West Cork Development Partnership
  • BioPharma in Cork, Ireland: Partner - PharmaChem Ireland
  • Maritime in Cork, Ireland: Partner - Irish Maritime and Energy Resource Cluster
  • Tourism in Cork, Ireland: Partner - Kinsale Chamber of Commerce
  • ICT in Ljubljana, Slovenia: Partner - ICT Technology Network
  • Agri-food in Pretoria, South Africa: Partner - University of Pretoria
  • ICT in Barcelona, Spain: Partner - Eurecat
  • ICT in Northern Ireland, United Kingdom: Partner - Invest Northern Ireland
  • Maritime in Southampton, United Kingdom: Partner - Marine South East
  • ICT in Chicago, USA: Partner(s) -  Chicagoland Chamber & University of Illinois

The V-LINC research group is active on the following European Projects:

The Consortex project - European Internationalisation Maritime Consortia in the shipbuilding & ancillary industries. The initiative is funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) through the Interreg Atlantic Area Programme. The project has a budget of €1.6 million, over 24 months and seeks to improve the competitiveness of the shipbuilding sector in the Atlantic Area.

The Consortex project, is led by Fórum Maritimo Vasco (FMV) based in Bilbao, and has partners from the five Member States of the Atlantic Area Programme (Portugal, Spain, France, Ireland and UK). The partnership includes; Fórum Maritimo Vasco (Bilbao, Spain); Fórum Oceano (Norte, Portugal); Associação das Indústrias Navais (Lisbon, Portugal); Cork Institute of Technology (Cork, Ireland); National Maritime (UK)  Clúster del Sector Naval Gallego (Galicia, Spain) and Bretagne Pôle Naval (Bretagne, France).

Intelligent Navl 4.0 (IN 4.0) is an Interreg Atlantic Area project which aims to promote the modernisation of the naval sector through the implementation industry 4.0 technologies. Through identifying
barriers that prevent the innovation of business model of naval sector, improving companies` productivity, transforming work
organisation systems, improving knowledge and commercialisation, and training staff of the naval sector in technologies.

The project is lead by Diputación Provincial de Pontevedra (Spain); and the partnership consists of Bretagne Pôle Naval (France); Cork Institute of Technology (Ireland); Fórum Oceano (Portugal); Asociación Cluster del Naval Gallego (Spain); University of Strathclyde (United Kingdom); Foro Marítimo Vasco (Spain) Pôle de Compétitivité EMC2 (France); Asociacion de Industriales Metalúrgicos de Galicia (Spain) and High Speed Sustainable Manufacturing Institute Ltd. (United Kingdom).

ecoRIS3 - The V-LINC research group was awarded the Interreg Europe ecoRIs3 project in January 2017, and we are also the Communications Leader for the international consortium.

ecoRIS3 addresses the transfer of innovation and knowledge, produced by both Research and Technological Organisations(RTOs)  and Higher Educational Institutions (HEIs),  to all types of Enterprises.
This important connectivity frequently demonstrates  gaps which can be a brake on overall levels of innovation and growth.

Regional Innovation SMART Specialisation Strategies (RIS3) focus on how the regional innovation ecosystem can be best structured and delivered.

The ecoRIs3 project addresses the clear need to promote better policies and measures, which generate solid interactions and knowledge transfers, between key research and production actors.
Among the activities to be delivered are a series of Regional SWOT Analyses, Exchanges of Experience and Good Practices and Policy Recommendations ( 

Be Wiser (Building Enterprises – Wireless and Internet Security in European Regions) is a 36 month project funded under the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) of the European Commission. It involves twelve partners from seven European countries and aims to strengthen the research, innovation potential and global competitiveness of European regions by bringing together research actors, enterprises, institutions and policy makers into a collaboration network. Lead partner is Systematic Paris Region ( 
The Resource Efficiency Maritime Capacity Project (REMCAP) is a 36 month project funded under the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) of the European Commission. It aims to increase innovation capacity in maritime resource efficiency to better position the maritime sector to exploit the growing global demand for resource efficient technologies, systems and operations.  REMCAP is a collaborative project with a total of 14 partner organisations from six European Regional Research Driven Clusters (

The V-LINC analysis was applied to the Agri-food sector in West Cork, Ireland, as part of a project commissioned by Cork County Council through the ATClusters project ( in collaboration with the West-Cork Development Partnership.

FOUNDATION - The V-LINC research group was awarded the Interreg Europe FOUNDATION project in August 2019, as Lead Partner to this European consortium of 9 partners.

FOUNDATION seeks to build regional resilience to industrial structural change.

Across Europe, public bodies are pressed by an increasing need to provide preparatory support to the economic ecosystem in advance of the closure of anchor firms in their region which act as significant employers. The impacts of a closure of course go beyond direct employees and ripple, wave like throughout the regional services sector and economy. Management of such anticipated structural change requires proactive renewal of business approaches and policy supports. Regions are encouraged to introduce pilot projects based on their own strengths and to provide appropriate business supports for the re-alignment of the regional industrial base. This proactive approach by regional stakeholders is critical to building the resilience of these regions and enabling them to adapt to change.

The importance of SMEs and start-ups to the regional economy is widely recognised in terms of the provision of employment, contribution to GDP, driving innovation and supporting regional resilience. It is imperative that the relevant regional stakeholders keep informed, inspired and equipped to provide the appropriate SME and start-up supports, particularly in regions anticipating structural change.

The FOUNDATION project seeks to support industry players, business support organisations and policy makers understanding of how their ecosystems work and when faced with shocks (firm closures) to collaboratively develop alternative growth and employment through supportive policies and programmes to boost SME competitiveness.


Other experience includes:

  • Smart Specialisation Peer Review
  • Executing SWOT & PESTLE Analysis
  • Undertaking Market Analysis
  • Animating Policy Roundtables
  • Developing + Conducting Online Surveys & Analysis
  • Joint Action Planning
  • Academic Publications
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