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Developing and sustaining the new wave of business clusters

CLUSTER INITIATIVES/ACTIVITIES

No Cluster is exactly the same as another. The activities of its members are dependent on their common objectives and the way they decide these will be attained. Typically cluster activities can include a mix of any of the following:

  • Information activities: Regular events to disseminate information between members on commercial and technology issues.
  • Learning: Educational and training programs set up by the cluster to increase workforce know-how and develop specialist knowledge. These would very likely be organized through collaboration with consultants, specialist training firms and academic establishments.
  • Marketing and Promotion: Research and analysis of information about markets. Collective activities to promote clusters products or services in home or export markets, such as joint participation in trade missions or trade shows, production of joint catalogues, brochures, public relations events etc.
  • Resource Sharing: Development and sharing of common infrastructure such as offices, labs, workshops, special equipment, and loaning of workforce to member companies.
  • Joint procurement: Collective purchasing of inputs such as materials and services, which brings considerable benefits of scale through bulk purchases.
  • Supply chain building activities and Joint Production. Activities to strengthen linkages between suppliers and buyers in the clusters such as: close collaboration in the manufacturing of a new product, or in sourcing new suppliers.
  • Joint R∓D: Alliances to fund research carried out by partner institutes to develop products and technology for cluster members.
  • Sourcing of investment funding: Collaborating to attract public and private sector fund clusters’ projects as well those of individual members.
  • Lobbying: Working together to tackle problems relating to the business environment such as: laws and regulations; government policy in relation to business, education, environment etc, through lobbying national and local government and other institutions.
  • Trans-regional or transnational activities

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