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Call for project proposals2018:

Promoting Mediterranean innovation capacities to develop smart

and sustainable growth
(Axis 1)
Target on Blue Growth

Terms of Reference
For modular projects focused on transfer
and capitalisation (M2+M3)

Specific Objective 1:
To increase transnational activity of innovative clusters and networks
of key sectors of the MED area

Programme co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund

Table of contents

1. Thematic context.................................................................................................................................... 2
1.1. EUROPEAN UNION ........................................................................................................................ 2
1.1.1 Europe 2020 Strategy .......................................................................................................... 2
1.1.2. Thematic Programmes ........................................................................................................ 3
1.1.3. Other funding instruments ................................................................................................ 4
1.2. MEDITERRANEAN SPACE .......................................................................................................... 5
1.2.1. Interreg MED Context .......................................................................................................... 5
1.2.2. MED 2007-2013 ..................................................................................................................... 7
1.2.3. Other European Territorial Cooperation and Neighbourhood programmes 8
2. Modus operandi ................................................................................................................................... 10
2.1. A new approach: the Interreg MED architecture........................................................... 10
2.2. Types of projects ......................................................................................................................... 11
2.3. Interaction between horizontal and modular projects ................................................ 11
2.4. Programme communication tools for projects................................................................ 12
2.5. Adoption of a greener approach ........................................................................................... 13
2.6. From a “should” to a “must” .................................................................................................... 13
2.7. Submission procedure and calendar of the call .............................................................. 13
3. Expectations for the Call .................................................................................................................. 14
3.1. Expectations for the Specific Objective .............................................................................. 14
3.2. What are we expecting from this call? ................................................................................ 18
3.2.1. Focus of the Third Call for Modular Projects................................................................ 19
3.3. Sub-thematic focuses ................................................................................................................. 20
3.4. Possible actions ........................................................................................................................... 22
3.5. Beneficiaries and target groups ............................................................................................ 23
3.6. Financial allocation and project duration ......................................................................... 25
4. References ............................................................................................................................................. 27
4.1. Interreg MED programme documents ................................................................................ 27
4.2. MED projects 2007-2013 ......................................................................................................... 27
4.3. Regulations/ Directives ............................................................................................................ 27
4.4. Communications and proposals from the Commission ............................................... 27
4.5. Programmes and initiatives co-financed by the European Union ........................... 28
4.6. Bibliography and other sources ............................................................................................ 28
Priority Axis 1: INNOVATION: Promoting Mediterranean innovation capacities to develop smart and
sustainable growth

Axis 1Budget (Co-financing): 71.72 M€ ERDF + 3.18 M€ IPA

Specific objective 1: To increase transnational activity of innovative clusters and networks of key
sectors of the MED area. Promoting business investment in Research and Innovation(R&I), developing
links and synergies between enterprises, research and development centres and the higher education
sector, in particular promoting investment in product and service development, technology transfer,
social innovation, eco-innovation, public service applications, demand stimulation, networking,
clusters and open innovation through smart specialisation, and supporting technological and applied
research, pilot lines, early product validation actions, advanced manufacturing capabilities and first
production, in particular, in key enabling technologies and diffusion of general purpose technologies.

The result indicator aims at measuring the share of innovative clusters (i.e. including RDI activities)
offering to their members a consolidated mix of transnational activities in key sectors of the MED area.


The MED 2014-2020 programme is committed to the development of a new thematic and
methodological basis in order to:
- Seek the improvement of the quality of the contents and aims of the programme, pursuing the
development already started in the 2007-13 programming period
- Respect the requirements of the Regulations recalling for more thematic concentration
- Answer the demands of the actors of the European territorial cooperation in the challenging
socio-economic context of the Mediterranean
The Cooperation programme developed by the participating States and validated by the Commission, is
completed with Terms of Reference that detail the aims of each Specific Objective. The new architecture
will make project implementing simpler and more flexible, adapting to the research of both concrete and
transferable solutions. Links between the domains of content and policy become tighter and are backed
up by communication and capitalization activities structured on the programme level.

Equally, the governance of the programme and its further evolution have become a Priority action of
its own: it will be fed with contents also coming from other programmes and policies, striving towards
a more strategic vision of the whole MED area.

1. Thematic context


1.1.1 Europe 2020 Strategy1

Europe 2020 is the European Union’s ten-year jobs and growth strategy. It was launched in 2010 to create
the conditions for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. These three mutually reinforcing priorities
should help the EU and the Member States deliver high levels of employment, productivity and social
cohesion. The five headline targets for the EU in the year 2020 address challenges related to:
- employment,
- R&D / innovation,

1COM(2010) 2020

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
- climate change / energy,
- education,
- poverty / social exclusion.

In particular, the expectations are to reach the following marks:

• 75% of the 20-64 year-olds to be employed
• 3% of the EU's GDP (public and private combined) to be invested in R&D/innovation
• greenhouse gas emissions 20% (or even 30%, if the conditions are right) lower than 1990
• 20% of energy from renewables
• 20% increase in energy efficiency
• Reducing school drop-out rates below 10%
• at least 40% of 30-34–year-olds completing third level education
• at least 20 million fewer people in or at risk of poverty and social exclusion

Thus, R&D and innovation, in a wide sense, is a key element of the Europe 2020 Strategy, as the
increased dimension of programmes as Horizon 2020 demonstrates. With a total budget of €79 billion,
it has become the EU's largest ever research and innovation programme and includes enhanced
measures to support SMEs. For example, the Horizon 2020 programme reserves a first slice of 145M€
for 2014-2015, of which 8M€ will be invested in Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).

In addition, a significant proportion of the EU's Structural and Investment Funds have been earmarked
for innovation. In that sense, for 2014-2020, the concept of Regional Smart Specialisation (RIS3) has
been introduced as the structural element of innovation policies. RIS3 is a strategic approach to
economic development through targeted support to Research and Innovation (R&I). It will be the basis
for European Structural and Investment Fund interventions in R&I as part of the current Regional and
Cohesion Policy's contribution to the Europe 2020 jobs and growth agenda.

More generally, smart specialisation involves a process of developing a vision, identifying competitive
advantage, setting strategic priorities and making use of smart policies to maximize the knowledge-
based development potential of any region, strong or weak, high-tech or low-tech.
In this framework, RIS3 appears as a process, at the end of which regional/national strategies should
identify activities, in which an investment of resources is likely to stimulate knowledge-driven growth
In short, RIS3 will structure at regional level the overall importance of innovation, contributing to the
smart growth objectives of Europe 2020 Strategy.

1.1.2. Thematic Programmes

The thematic concentration proposed by the Europe 2020Strategy necessarily brings programmes to
coincide in some issues. Overlapping or redundancy shall be avoided, giving place to the complemen-
tarities between instruments. When relevant, the Interreg MED Programme can contribute to finance
projects in coherence with these thematic programmes.

The reflection is valid also for programmes with core focus and priorities more distant from Interreg
MED’s – such as Rights, Equality and Citizenship Programme – to which topics MED projects can always
work in a complementary way, namely through the principles of social innovation. Being aware of the
possible thematic overlapping of funds, projects are expected to explore the specificities of the
approaches in each programme. In particular, the territorial and transnational cooperation nature of
Interreg MED projects should allow the clear identification of the searched complementarities.
As indicative information, the connections between the innovation objectives for 2014 and 2020 and
the thematic EU programme are highlighted in the table below.

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
Connections between the “innovation” thematic objectives for 2014 and 2020 and the thematic EU

Strong coherence between the thematic objective and the thematic programme
Average coherence between the thematic objective and the thematic programme
No connection between the thematic objective and the thematic programme

1.1.3. Other funding instruments

Innovative funding instruments and mechanisms are trending topics at the European level. In part, this
is due to the economic situation of public administrations, but also based on the leverage effect of
such concept. The role of the European Investment Bank (EIB) can be highlighted in this context. In
collaboration with the European Commission (e.g. H2020 and ESIF) and Member States (National
funds) initiatives, the EIB proposes several financial instruments that aim at boosting the innovation
capacities of European businesses, in the framework of Europe 2020 Strategy for smart, sustainable
and inclusive growth (

Lastly, the Commissioner Juncker Plan - “Investment Plan for Europe”, that should have mobilised up
to 315 billion€ between 2015-2017 in public and private investments, improving the access of small
and medium-sized companies to finance, exceeded the €315 bln target by mobilising €335 bln, and has
been extended in 2017 in duration and capacity to €500 billion by the end of 2020.

Below, some examples of other funding instruments, whose activities might be complementary to
Interreg Med projects.

InnovFin – EU Finance for Innovators

"InnovFin – EU Finance for Innovators" is a joint initiative launched by the European Investment Bank
Group (EIB and EIF) in cooperation with the European Commission under Horizon 2020.

InnovFin aims to facilitate and accelerate access to finance for innovative businesses and other
innovative entities in Europe. One of the key factors constraining the implementation of R&I activities
is the lack of available financing at acceptable terms to innovative businesses since these types of
companies or projects deal with complex products and technologies, unproven markets and intangible

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
The EIB Group can provide from 25 000€ up to a limit of 300m€, either directly or indirectly through
banks or other financial institutions. Typically, the EIB loan covers a third of project cost, but may
finance up to 50%.

Flexible SME funding (JEREMIE)

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can access finance and financial engineering products
through the JEREMIE programme. National and regional authorities can opt to deploy money from EU
Structural and Social Funds in the form of market-driven financial instruments instead of offering
grants. A major advantage is that unlike grants, which can only be spent once, a pool of funds can be
re-invested several times. Support is provided to selected local financial intermediaries via national or
regional governments.

European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) Financial Instruments

Financial Instruments (FIs) transform EU resources under the European Structural and Investment
Funds (ESIF) into financial products such as loans, guarantees, equity and other risk-bearing
mechanisms. These are then used to support economically viable projects promoting EU policy
objectives. The amount of ESIF resources dedicated to FIs is expected to increase from approximately
EUR 12bn during 2007-2013 to EUR 30-35bn during 2014-2020.

Supporting urban development (JESSICA)

Integrated, sustainable urban-renewal projects are supported through JESSICA (Joint European
Support for Sustainable Investment in City Areas). A range of sophisticated financial tools are used
including equity investments, loans and guarantees, offering new opportunities for the use of EU
Structural Funds.


1.2.1.Interreg MED Context

The overall objective of the Interreg MED Programme is to promote sustainable growth in the
Mediterranean area by fostering innovative concepts and practices (technologies, governance,
innovative services…), reasonable use of resources (energy, water, maritime resources…) and
supporting social integration through an integrated and territorially based cooperation approach.
Under this aim, the Interreg MED Programme will support projects that will promote a more resource-
efficient, competitive and greener economy in the Mediterranean area.

Priority Axis 1. Innovation

The Priority Axis 1 aims to strengthen innovation capacities of public and private actors of
Mediterranean regions and support smart and sustainable growth. It grants a specific attention to blue
and green growth, cultural and creative industries, and social innovation that represent strong
development and jobs potential in Mediterranean regions. It underlines the need to strengthen
innovation clusters, economic sectors, value chains and networks throughout MED regions.

Specific Objective (SO) 1.1: To increase transnational activity of innovative clusters and networks of
key sectors of the MED area
The specific objective targets to improve innovation capacities of public and private actors involved in
green and blue growth sectors, cultural and creative industries and social economy through stronger
transnational cooperation and better connections between actors of the quadruple helix (research
bodies, businesses, public authorities, civil society). The objective is especially to improve empowerment
of these actors with, within and between existing clusters, economic sectors and networks.

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
It’s worth mentioning that the expected result is reinforced, empowered and increasingly transnatio-
nal innovation clusters and networks in key sectors of the MED area. Thus, the indicator will measure
the share of innovative clusters (i.e. including RDI activities) offering to their members a consolidated
mix of involved in transnational activities concerning in key sectors of the MED area.

The MED space’s overall performance regarding innovation is currently below the European targets,
according to the ESPON TERREVI report (November 2012). In this field, the most relevant characteristic
of the territories integrating the INTERREG MED space is the heterogeneity of their research and
innovation potential. At the same time, it is acknowledged that these territories share some fields of
specialization with strong potential for integrated and transnational strategies.
The findings from the SWOT analysis and the connection to innovation needs are summarized in the
following table.

Main challenges Main needs

- Increasing competition from - Stronger investments in R&D
other countries and areas in the - Improve competitiveness of
world businesses
- Challenge to reach the objectives - Strengthen the connection and
of the Europe 2020 Strategy with cooperation between research,
lower innovation level in innovation and businesses
Mediterranean regions than the
- Improve connections between
EU average
regional networks and clusters to
- Good development potential in generate critical mass in terms of
the sector of blue and green research and innovation
growth that would deserve to be
- Improve the capacity of SMEs to use
better promoted
the results research and innovation
produced by large research and
innovation poles
- Better focus interventions on
common innovation sectors
throughout the MED area (blue
growth, and green growth sectors)

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
- Increasing climate change - Improve observation capacities,
consequences on MED regions norms, technics and cooperation
- Increasing scarcity of water between stakeholders to reduce the
resources vulnerability of MED regions to
natural risks
- Potential to improve the
production of renewable energy - More sustainable management of
but very diverse situations Mediterranean cities (energy, water,
between MED regions and MED spatial planning, transports, waste
countries management, health management)
- Increasing urban pressure - To bring specific answers to the
requiring long term sustainable needs of islands regarding energy
and integrated urban and water management (small scale
development (energy, water, solutions, independence)
planning, transports, waste - Improve the resilience of coastal
management, health) areas, biodiversity, natural and
- Increasing pressure of economic cultural heritage in front of human
activities on natural and cultural pressure and climate change
resources and on coastal areas consequences (awareness raising,
change of habits, protection
- Important impact of the
agriculture on landscapes and
natural resources - Reduce marine pollution and marine
- Important pollution of the
Mediterranean Sea
- Important consequences of - Better promote social innovation in
demographic change on connection with key socioeconomic
economy, employment and sectors (tourism, energy,
quality of life (aging population) transports…)
- Increasing difficulties for the - Better take into account
socioeconomic inclusion of young socioeconomic issues and needs of
people, in particular in time of end users in the conception and
crisis implementation of sustainable
development policies (environment,
energy, transports)

1.2.2. MED 2007-2013

During the period 2007-2013, with a total of 193M€ ERDF budget, through 8 calls for proposals, a total
of 158 projects was programmed for the whole 4 Priority axis (Innovation, Environment, Territorial
accessibility, Balanced regional development).
Among the projects selected during the 2007-2013 period, 60 were straight focused on Innovation,
and most of the others indirectly dealt with innovation.
The experience from these operations also identified a series of territorial and sectorial needs, such as:
- Reinforcement of cooperation at different levels (between SMEs and bigger firms, between
clusters, between private sector and policy level), encouraging the engagement of the academic
sector and the public administration to foster competitiveness of the local enterprises.
- Promotion of culture for innovation (raise awareness and integrate policies of Corporate and
Social Responsibility and Intellectual Propriety, involve traditional MSMEs in the process of
innovation, promote hidden innovation in SMEs, raise awareness of the need for

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
internationalization based on the acquisition of new capacities rather than on the provision of
grants or subsidies)
- Definition of specific sector approaches promoting the involvement of several agents (public and
private initiatives).
- Preserve manufacturing production capacities by means of intelligent adjustments in industrial
- An interdisciplinary approach should be fostered rather than segmented specialization.
- Improve logistic systems to favour lower transportation costs (environmental and economic).

1.2.3. Other European Territorial Cooperation and Neighbourhood programmes

For the programming period 2014-2020, the European Territorial Cooperation (ETC) considers 7 transna-
tional programmes in the Mediterranean regions (besides the interregional Interreg Europe programme).
All of them tackle R&D and Innovation and/or SMEs competitiveness investment priorities:

1.b 3.a 3.b 3.d

InterregMED Programme
Adriatic-Ionian programme
Balkan-Mediterranean programme
Danube Programme
South-West programme
Central Europe Programme
Alpine Space Programme
Interreg EUROPE Programme

As stated previously regarding the thematic EU programmes, the list of the ETC programmes overlap-
ping the territory and themes with MED is presented below as indicative information.

Adriatic-Ionian programme (ADRION)

Priority Axis 1: “Innovative Region”
Thematic Objective 1: Strengthening research, technological development and innovation:
SO1-Support the development of innovation networks and clusters among regions, academia
and enterprises in the AIO region

Balkan-Mediterranean programme
Priority Axis 1: Entrepreneurship & Innovation / Enhancing the competitiveness of SMEs
SO 1.1: Promote entrepreneurship and business creation on the basis on new ideas,
innovation and new types of business models.
SO 1.2: Facilitate innovation in business models and allow a maximum number of SMEs to
innovate and adjust their business models to the changing socioeconomic and
policy/regulatory circumstances

Danube Programme
Priority axis 1: Innovative and socially responsible Danube region
1.1 Improve framework conditions for innovation

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
1.2 Increase competences for business and social innovation

South-West programme (SUDOE)

SO 1 – to support synergy and networks in the field of R&D at transnational level, taking into account
the Smart specialization
SO2 – supporting applied research and its promotion in relation with the key enabling technologies.

Central Europe is supporting two types of interventions:

‒ Actions to improve sustainable linkages among actors of the innovation systems for strengthening
regional innovation capacity in central Europe (referring to Specific Objective 1.1)
‒ Actions to improve skills and competences of employees and entrepreneurs for driving economic
and social innovation in central European regions (referring to Specific Objective 1.2)

Alpine Space (ASP) will favour the analysis and identification of innovation resources and obstacles as
a base for further actions directed to innovation policies and coordination. Capacity building and
transnational cooperation structures are other expected results. Through its second SO, the ASP will
help to achieve more efficient services of general interest through developing, testing and adopting
new social innovation solutions.

Interreg EUROPE
Thematic Objective 1: Strengthening research, technological development and innovation
Priority 1.1: enhancing research and innovation (R&I) infrastructure and capacities to develop
R&I excellence and promoting centres of competence, in particular those of European interest;
Priority 1.2: promoting business investment in R&I, developing links and synergies between
enterprises, research and development centres and the higher education sector.
Thematic Objective 2: Enhancing the competitiveness of SMEs
Priority 2.1: Supporting the capacity of SMEs to engage in growth in regional, national and
international markets, and in innovation processes

Furthermore, as concerns the European Neighbourhood Policy for Mediterranean Sea Basin, ENI CBC
MED programme, will clearly earmark most of its efforts on Innovation and SMEs competitiveness:

Thematic Objective 1: Business and SMEs development

Priority 1.1: Support innovative start-up and recently established enterprises with a particular
focus on young and women entrepreneurs and facilitate the protection of their Intellectual
Property Rights and commercialization where applicable;
Priority 1.2: Strengthen and support euro-Mediterranean networks, clusters, consortia and
value-chains in traditional (agro-food, tourism, textile/clothing, etc.) and non-traditional
sectors (innovative ideas solutions for urban development, eco-housing, sustainable water-
related and other clean technologies, renewable energy, creative industries, etc.);
Priority 1.3: Encourage sustainable tourism initiatives and actions aimed at diversifying into
new segments and niches.

Thematic Objective 2: Support to education, research, technological development and innovation

Priority 2.1: Support technological transfer and commercialisation of research results,
strengthening the linkages between research, industry as well as private sector actors;
Priority 2.2: Support SMEs in accessing research and innovation also through clustering;

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
2. Modus operandi

2.1. A new approach: the Interreg MED architecture

The programme is designed in an integrated manner with projects of a complementary nature, with
the aim of strengthening the impact and visibility of Mediterranean cooperation through structured
capitalisation and governance processes.
The Interreg MED architecture is composed of three typologies of projects:
- Modular projects
In Axis 1, 2 and 3
- Horizontal projects

- Axis 4 Governance Platform project and strategic projects

see Factsheets “MED Modular Projects”; “Horizontal projects”; “Axis 4 platform project” of the
Programme Manual for further information on the architecture and the types of projects

The ‘modular’ projects study, test and transfer main outcomes at territorial level, responding to the
needs of the territories. They are designed with a “module-based approach” to reflect the three
successive phases of a public intervention: a phase of study and development of strategies and policies
(Module 1); a phase of testing, to validate the hypothesis developed and transfer into the territories
(Module 2); a phase of capitalisation of results at transnational level (Module 3).
The “horizontal” projects create and animate thematic communities and cluster the outcomes of the
modular projects to reinforce and complement sound capitalisation processes.
The work produced by the thematic communities in turn feeds the Programme governance level acted
through the top-down governance project PANORAMED of national and regional authorities and Axis
4 strategic projects.
The three levels are strictly interconnected and feed each other through a circular bottom-up/top-
down dynamic.
This Architecture can be materialised with the following scheme:

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
2.2. Types of projects

Based on the module approach, different types of projects are possible within the Interreg MED
Programme, single modules or multi-modules.

However, the present call for proposals is open only to multi-modular M2 + M3 “Testing and
Capitalising” type of projects concretely focusing on Blue Growth.
For your complete information, you can find below types of activities and outputs than can be
developed in such projects.
The "Studying" module being excluded, a time to recover and adapt existing knowledge could be
included on the first quarter of activities, within the feasibility check (the desk research would be/has
been done outside the project, during the application).

 M2 - TESTING: Pilot demonstration and transfer actions

The “Testing” module should promote a large-scale application / replication of existing tools or
Type of activities: a module dedicated to pilot activities where project partners will have the possibility
to test processes, techniques, models, in the perspective to setup solutions applicable to a wider set
of users and territories. Pilot activities can be setup when the context, data and actors are already well
identified and when technical and institutional conditions are favourable. In case of short feedback
loops, the pilot activity can include both the preliminary work of analysis and the implementation of
the pilot activity. The transferability of pilot activities to the territory is compulsory in this module and
should be specifically reinforced in this Call for proposals..
Types of outputs: Preliminary studies (feasibility), common methodology for demonstration, testing
and evaluation, plan of results portability, transfer protocols and tools.

 M3 - CAPITALISING: Transfer, dissemination and capitalisation:

The “Capitalising” module should see its types of activities reinforced in order to ensure a level of
capitalisation compatible with the Programme's strategy and will have to take into account outputs
of finalised MED projects
Type of activities: When methodologies, practices, intervention tools have been tested and
implemented by stakeholders at local or regional level and that they represent a strong interest for
wider dissemination in the INTERREG MED eligible area, projects can develop capitalisation and
dissemination activities. A specific attention will be paid to the transfer of results towards regional and
national ERDF programmes and to the involvement of end users in the dissemination processes. It will
be necessary to ensure that tools, practices and methodologies are effectively taken on board by all
actors concerned, and applied at local, regional, national or transnational level as broadly as possible
and free of charge.
Types of outputs: policy recommendations, Memorandum of Understanding, agreements, procedures,
regulatory proposals.

2.3. Interaction between horizontal and modular projects

Horizontal projects support modular projects in communication and capitalisation activities and
ensure common results’ transnational transferability

The horizontal projects under the coordination of the Programme Authorities have the task to promote
the modular projects’ communication and capitalisation actions within a joint framework, in order to
better highlight the interests of the Programme as well as of the transnational projects themselves.
Each modular project is linked to a horizontal project.

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
Horizontal projects capture elements of the modular projects within each thematic Programme
specific objective, analyse them, summarise and ensure their transnational dissemination and
transferability, in cooperation with the Programme Authorities. They provide the frame for developing
synergies, produce summaries and qualitative analysis as well as coordinate and manage (under
supervision of the JS) the communication of a cluster of projects. They structure and disseminate a
message for the entire MED community and work on thematic inter-axes links (1, 2 and 3) and with
the Axis 4 "platform" project PANORAMED (governance)
Horizontal projects help and support the communication and capitalisation of selected modular
projects for each call and for each specific objective, proposing relevant tools for coordination between
horizontal projects, between horizontal project and modular projects and finally between horizontal
projects and the programme level.
They also enable synergies and favour connections between modular projects from the different
thematic communities as they are interrelated thanks to crosscutting themes, as demonstrated
notably during the Mid-term event of the Interreg MED programme where thematic communities
promoted jointly their results on climate change, blue growth, and inclusive growth.

The modular projects can benefit from the ‘savings’ created thanks to the work of the horizontal
project: they do not need to carry out transnational communication or capitalisation tasks outside
their territories and/or in a larger approach than their specific topics, which are taken over by the
horizontal project. Apart from local communication towards direct target groups of each partner, the
modular projects can concentrate their effort mainly in content issues.

On the other hand, each modular project contributes to the communication and capitalisation
activities of the Horizontal project to which it is linked. The expected needs for this cooperation
include, amongst others: preparing dispatches with the relevant information for communication or
sectorial analysis, participating in events and discussion groups. This implies that each partner should
consider the possibility of participating in up to two joint events per year organised by the horizontal
For each modular project, a contact person should be designated to act as point of reference in the
communication between the project and the horizontal project.
In this flux of information, the modular projects are supposed to elaborate information in the most
convenient format to be treated by the horizontal projects for communication or analytical purposes.

2.4. Programme communication tools for projects

Interreg MED Programme web platform and visual identity (see Programme and Project branding
book ):
For the daily coordination, the Interreg MED Programme provides a web platform with all the
necessary tools and functionalities. It helps horizontal and modular projects to receive/provide
information and communicate with all necessary levels. The web platform is the communication hub,
allowing for promotion, but also management, coordination and exchange.

In this regard, modular projects should not foresee budget allocations to develop project websites.
This indication is also valid concerning specifically the creation of project logos, since the Programme
will also provide a common framework for the logos.
This common approach solution for the projects websites and logos will ensure economies of scale,
reducing hosting and website development costs and allowing the projects to concentrate their budget
allocations on the development of more effective communication activities at their level.
Modular projects will be able to dedicate more efforts and time to the technical part and thus produce
better results. Their partners will have to forecast a specific budget for transnational coordination with
Horizontal project and communication activities at a local level.

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
2.5. Adoption of a greener approach

After a strong work of knowledge exchange, guidelines on “Greening our event” have been produced
by Interreg MED thematic communities. This initiative allows the promotion of sustainable practices
towards more environmentally friendly events organised by Interreg Med projects. The projects
approved under this Call for proposals are recommended to take vision and adopt the guidelines in
order to integrate sustainability criteria in the organisation of their project events.

2.6. From a “should” to a “must”

The project applications must be designed in order to provide objective responses to well identified
challenges. Projects are requested to work over the outputs of previous projects, establishing a
working plan of recognizable capacity to address concrete results. In short, project proposals have to
establish a clear and logical path from a demonstrated need to tangible and realistic output(s).
Projects should be built under the perspective of capitalizing any relevant experiences and results
(from activities financed by Interreg MED or other). This point of departure has to be fully identified,
as well as the strategy for its use in the development of the new project. Actions and their expected
outcomes have to address the relevant stakeholders and the uptake of conclusions, in accordance to
the type of project and concerned sector of activity.

2.7. Submission procedure and calendar of the call

For the current call for proposals, projects will have to submit their application through a two-phase
- A 1st phase consisting in a pre-application where only some sections of the Application Form
have to be filled in and will be assessed (verify the courtesy “Pre-application Form template”
available for the call)
- A 2nd phase consisting in a full Application Form, where all sections of the Application Form
have to be filled in and will be assessed.
The pre-application phase of the submission will be followed by an eligibility check and a first
assessment, according to the administrative and assessment procedures approved by the Interreg
MED Monitoring Committee
Only the best scores will be admitted to the full application phase.
An intermediate parallel step of information exchange and bilateral meetings will be organised
between the partnerships admitted to the 2nd phase and the MED JS in order to support applicants in
the design of their full application and to ensure a coherence between Programme objectives for this
Call and projects objectives.
A second administrative check as well as a second final assessment will be performed after the full
application submission phase.
For more information about the submission procedure, see the factsheet “Two phase application
procedure” of the Programme manual.
For more information about eligibility and assessment criteria, see the factsheet “Appraisal of project
proposals” of the Programme manual.

Lead Partners willing to submit a proposal in the framework of the call must request the creation of
the proposal in the monitoring system SYNERGIE CTE to the Joint Secretariat, following the procedure
detailed in the dedicated Synergie Guide.

The calendar of the call is the following:

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
Key steps Dates
Pre-application submission phase Call open from 30/10/2018 to 31/01/2019
31/01/2019: Deadline for validation of pre-
application via Synergie CTE
14/02/2019: Deadline for upload of annexes on
Synergie CTE (pre-application form confirmation
page (Section E) + Expressions of Interest per each
partner and the LP + Associated Partners
Pre-application assessment February-March 2019
Pre-application selection April 2019
Exchange with applicants admitted in the full April 2019 / early May 2019
application phase
Full application submission phase Call open from 02/05/2019 to 27/06/2019
Full application assessment July – August 2019
Full application selection September 2019
Pre-contracting and contracting procedures October 2019
Starting date of the projects 01/11/2019
Please note that the full application phase calendar might be subject to some modifications after the
pre-application phase.

3. Expectations for the Call

3.1. Expectations for the Specific Objective

The Priority Axis 1 aims to strengthen innovation capacities of public and private actors of
Mediterranean regions and support smart and sustainable growth. In particular, it is expected to
increase the innovation capacities in the MED through fostering the role of Quadruple Helix2 and their
impact on MED clusters (as Business and Innovation support organizations) at transnational level. The
constitution of multilevel and inter sectorial working teams and partnerships is essential and the
inclusion of citizens in the development of activities is without any doubt of an added value for the
future business processes. For those sectors not yet (or feebly) structured in clusters, projects should
contribute in a tangible manner to create the critical mass and environment needed to promote it.

The main change sought in the field of blue growth, the subtheme of the Priority Axis 1open in the
current call, is:

 to improve the innovation framework conditions of maritime clusters,

 to strengthen and empower innovation of maritime clusters and networks
 to improve the connections between clusters and/or dynamic marine thematic networks of
transnational nature
 to facilitate the exchanges between research, SMEs, public administration and institutions and
end-users working in the blue growth

The empowerment of public institutions and private businesses working in blue growth sectors, such
as marine energies, maritime safety and security, aquaculture, marine biotechnology, coastal and
maritime tourism, is in the focus of the current call. The application of useful tools and instruments

2Quadruple Helix: innovation model that involves institutional bodies, research sphere, business
sector, and citizens in the process. This new generation of open innovation leads to stronger
economic impact and better user experience in Europe.

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
favouring the innovation of the SMEs will assist in the provision of new services and development of
business activities.

Since the beginning of the 2014-2020 Programming period, a total of 91 projects were approved,
from which 7 projects under S.O.1.1., with the following distribution:

The current state of play of Priority Axis 1 of the Interreg MED Programme 2014-2020, subtheme blue
growth, includes the implementation of 6 modular projects of a single and multi-module type,
approved under the 1st and the 2nd call for modular projects, and 1 horizontal project approved under
the call for horizontal projects. Synopsising, the Programme is currently funding projects with 3
studying phases, 6 testing phases and 1 capitalization phase in total.

The distribution of on-going projects per type is shown in the following table:

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
The ongoing projects under the blue growth theme are listed below. For more information on the
projects, please see our webplaform

Horizontal project– ongoing

The InnoBlueGrowth project coordinates the blue growth thematic community of modular projects. It
leads the thematic community and reinforces it with community building activities, capitalisation
events and thematic workshops. Through its activities the project enhances the dissemination and
transferability of the modular projects results and ensures a wider impact of the projects on external
multilevel stakeholders, thus contributing to the sustainable socio-economic development of the
Mediterranean area.

Testing projects (M2) - ongoing

PELAGOS is a testing project that aims to develop smart and sustainable blue growth by focusing on
an enhanced transnational Interreg MED cluster in the blue energy sector and facilitating the
distribution of targeted solutions and products specifically adapted for the Mediterranean regions.
An innovative on-line platform ( has been launched and is now promoted by the
project with the participation of SMEs coming from the participating in the project Mediterranean
countries. It aims to increase the innovation capacity of its members and support research &
innovation in the marine renewable energy sector. It also fosters linkages and collaborations among
all the stakeholders of the quadruple helix.

4helix+ project is a testing project that aims at stimulating, coaching and funding cross-sectoral and
trans-boundary innovation in the blue growth sector. It will collaborate with innovation agents such as
fablabs, co-working spaces, makerspaces and creative hubs to bridge the gap among the
Mediterranean maritime clusters and within their quadruple helixes. The enhanced 8 MED maritime
regional clusters will be involved in the testing, evaluation and regional/national transferring of a
transnational innovation process according to an open source, knowledge sharing and community-
based approach.

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
Studying and Testing projects (M1+M2) – ongoing

iBLUE project is a studying and testing project that aims to revive the yachting sector through a
transnational network to help the economic upturn by sharing business models which integrate the 3
pillars of sustainability (environmental, social, economic), developing the “3-PBM” methodology. The
studying module has been already completed and the methodology has been developed after an in-
depth literature review focused on business models and sustainability indicators. Data on national
yacht industries and a company best practices collection are now available. The “3-PBM” methodology
is now being presented to local enterprises in the yachting and maritime sector. Pilot activities are
being realized, including the drafting of sustainable business models for a number of enterprises.
Training activities are as well previewed for dissemination and transfer of the finalized tools.

MAESTRALE is a project that develops studying and testing activities for blue energy deployment in the
Interreg MED area. The aim of the project is to select 20 pilot sites as concrete initiatives to implement
blue energy plants in the partners regions. A geo-database embedding information on energy
potentials has been recently released ( which contains a lot of
examples of sites. Blue Energy Labs with a participative design process, involving local enterprises,
public authorities, knowledge institutions and citizens are now taking place in the participating
Mediterranean countries, with a scope to support future blue energy policies and plan concrete
strategies for blue growth in these areas.

PROteuS project is a studying and testing project that aims at exploiting the growth potential of the
emerging maritime surveillance industry that can play a crucial role in the socio-economic
development of the MED area and in the generation of new job opportunities. This objective is
addressed through the establishment of a MED MS Cluster, fostering innovation and R&D capacities,
knowledge and technology transfer, as well as transnational cooperation among the involved key MS
actors, focusing on maritime security and safety mechanisms in MED area. The project has completed
its studying phase and has established national nodes on maritime surveillance in several
Mediterranean countries.

Integrated project (M1+M2+M3) - ongoing

MISTRAL is the integrated project combining all the three modules – studying, testing and capitalising.
It intends to make marine knowledge and sustainable innovation the key drivers for blue growth. To
this end, it will support MED clusters to become an excellent intermediary of knowledge and
implement sustainable development trajectories, harmonised with the MED regions Smart
Specialisation Strategies. A clustering innovation service pack for blue growth clusters and operators
will be developed to improve the SMEs innovation performance. MISTRAL has the ambition to develop
a wider governance vision towards 2020 in the blue growth sector, as well as assuring the effective
policy mainstreaming. The project is in the middle of its studying module now analysing the blue
growth market trends and emerging technologies.

All the submitted project applications within this call are expected to build on and/or to complement
developed tools and results delivered by finalized interventions of the MED Programme (2007-2013)
and/or ongoing projects from the Interreg MED Programme (2014-2020) or other EU initiatives and
Programmes focussed on innovation in the blue growth sector and contributing to the empowerment
of SMEs and maritime clusters in the Mediterranean.
It is recommended that the submitted proposals focus on those subthemes of blue growth that are
currently underrepresented or missing from the selected projects under the 1st and the 2nd call for
modular projects in order to complement the blue growth thematic community. Additionally, the

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
submitted project applications are expected to work in synergies with the ongoing projects thus
contributing to the development the Interreg MED blue growth thematic community.

3.2. What are we expecting from this call?

The need to raise innovation capacities in the MED programme area is highlighted by the substantial
amount of budget dedicated to all the Priority Axis 1 of the Interreg MED Programme 2014-2020. Effort
should be made to attract directly economic operators in the development of the project proposals
and the implementation of the project activities, as well as to mobilize stakeholders of the quadruple
The specific objective of the current call is oriented towards improving innovation capacities of public
and private actors involved in the blue growth sectors(marine energies, maritime safety and security,
aquaculture and fishing, marine biotechnology, coastal and maritime tourism),through stronger
transnational cooperation and better connections between actors of the quadruple helix (research
bodies, businesses, public authorities, civil society).
The successful projects should contribute, directly or indirectly to the achievement of the result
indicator of the specific objective 1 of the Interreg MED Programme.
In particular:
Share of innovative clusters (i.e. including RDI activities) offering to their members a consolidated
mix of services involved in transnational activities concerning key sectors of the MED area.
In this call for proposals, the blue growth sector of the MED area is directly addressed through the
share of innovative maritime clusters.
Innovative cluster is considered the one complying with the following criteria: membership composed
of companies and research centres or companies with dedicated research activities combined with an
explicit innovation objective, or groupings of independent undertakings, innovative start-ups, SMEs,
large undertakings and research organizations operating in a particular sector and region, designed to
stimulate innovative activity by promoting interactions, sharing of facilities and exchange of knowledge
and expertise, contributing effectively to technology transfer, networking and dissemination.
Transnational activities are defined as activities involving services and tools to develop economic
partnerships for enterprises at international level, financial incentives, tools to support
internationalization and innovation of SMEs.
The “consolidated mix of services”, refers to clusters developing at least 3 out of 5 types of activities
(cf. table), with a minimum of 2 sub-categories on a regular basis (more than once a year)

5 types of services, tools and activities to the internationalization of cluster members are identified (based on TACTICS
studies, the European Cluster Observatory and the EU cluster portal).

Types of activities
E. International
A. Knowledge and B. Capacity C. International D. Financial
Cooperation and
Market access Building Trade and partnering Opportunities
 Trade,  Training  Trade mission  Investment  Cluster
Technology and  Mentoring  B2B Forum Networks
Legal Alerts /Coaching  Brokerage  Business Angels  EU funded
 Market  Other events and innovative projects
intelligence  Matchmaking funding  International
 Technology events opportunities projects
intelligence  Other  Public funding  Advocacy and
 Legal Advice opportunities Lobbying
 Other  Soft landing  Liaison offices
services  Other
 Other

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
To attain the above-mentioned objective and the approved result indicator, projects are expected to
contribute to a change in the Programme area by:
- upgrading the aptitudes of MED innovation actors to be more active in EU thematic programmes
or networks and, in general, to improve their innovation capacities and competitiveness
- coordinating the MED stakeholders to reinforce their role in EU or international networks and fora
- adapting the results obtained in R&D or thematic programmes into MED context to make the
territorial policies more efficient

Projects shall ensure coherence and complementarity with ESI funds (ERDF, ESF, Cohesion Fund,
EAFRD, EMFF, see section 6.1. of the Cooperation Programme), ERDF regional and national
programmes and/or other relevant regional/local plans, as well other EU and international thematic
programmes and policies, taking into account on-going actions and, if relevant, supporting the transfer
of results from the Interreg MED programme to these programmes. In addition, the replicability of
successfully proven practices and the multiplying effect of the actions should lay the basis of project
applications within the current call for proposals.

The Interreg MED Programme expects to obtain project proposals that fully integrate the aims defined
above as well as the Interreg MED crosscutting principles of transnationality, cooperation, results-
orientation, capitalisation and replicability all over the cooperation space of reference. Project
proposals are entitled to integrate creative and innovative measures aiming at providing effective
solutions to persistent problems of the Mediterranean.
For more information, see Factsheet Interreg MED Programme strategic framework of the Programme

3.2.1. Focus of the Third Call for Modular Projects

Considering the ongoing projects in the Priority Axis 1 - blue growth subtheme, most of the
applications, implemented at the moment, cover mainly the studying (M1) and the testing (M2)
modules in different sectors of the blue growth. Within the current call for proposals the focus is
projects developing the testing and the capitalization modules (M2+M3) i.e. directed to the
enhancement of the transferring and capitalization activities that should be developed by the projects
building on results and outputs of completed interventions. The capitalization approach is key in order
to showcase the impact of results and maximize the outreach potential of the Interreg MED projects.

The analysis of the results and the applications received in the framework of the first and the second
call led to the following findings particularly related to S.O.1.1.that should be of consideration for this
call’s applications:

 limited response to the identified challenges in the blue growth

 few applications in blue growth sectors in general but in particular very limited response
infishing and aquaculture, marine biotechnologies, coastal and maritime tourism
 indispensable direct participation of SMEs as beneficiaries of the projects receiving directly
funds from the Programme budget to develop activities
 need for reinforced SMEs involvement in the project activities as target group of transferring
and capitalization activities
 available studies and research, results and outputs from previous interventions in the targeted
field that could be tested, complemented, transferred and capitalized
 pilot activities on small scale that need to be replicated on a larger scale and/or in different
MED countries context and then transferred on Programme level
 need to strengthen the transferring phase of the projects

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
 no capitalization activities developed until now on blue growth as only one project with a
capitalization phase has been recently funded

In that sense, the current call for proposals in the Priority Axis 1 is reserved to multi-module projects
only of the type M2+M3 (testing and capitalising) in the blue growth.

The reinforcement of transnational cooperation between maritime clusters has to be at the core of
all the proposals, as well as the direct involvement of SMEs in the project activities as project
beneficiaries, as well as target groups of proposed activities.

3.3. Sub-thematic focuses

The SWOT analysis has identified four sectors with increased strategic interest for the actions that
might be supported by the MED programme within Priority Axis 1: Blue growth, Green growth, Cultural
and Creative Industries, Social innovation.
This call is open only for project applications referring to the blue growth in all its subthemes
mentioned below.
Currently, the selected projects within the Priority Axis 1.1 cover only some of the blue growth
subthemes, while subthemes like fishing and aquaculture, blue biotechnologies and coastal and
maritime tourism, remain without any representation in the blue growth thematic community of
modular projects. For this reason priority will be given to project applications developing transferring
and capitalisation activities in those subthemes of the blue growth that are not satisfactorily
represented up to now by the approved modular projects within the Interreg MED Programme 2014-

Additionally, the analysis and mapping of the Regional Smart Specialisation Strategies (RIS3) proposed
to the European Commission by Mediterranean regions have permitted to identify some more
targeted issues. These are tackled by European Structural and Investment Fund interventions in R&I as
part of the current Regional and Cohesion Policy's contribution to the Europe 2020 jobs and growth
Following the need to concentrate resources and contribute to the specialization of the programme,
and taking in consideration the results of the first and the second call for projects, project proposals
should look for a special impact on the following sectors:

Blue Energy
Our seas and oceans offer a vast renewable energy resource. Technologies are currently being
developed to exploit this potential (offshore wind, tidal and wave potential as well as differences in
temperature and salinity).
Fishing &Aquaculture :
In Europe, aquaculture accounts for about 20% of fish production and directly employs some 80 000
people. EU aquaculture is renowned for its high quality, sustainability and consumer protection standards.
Furthermore, it opens the door to complementary and hybrid exploitation of instalments (connecting
energy and fish production, for example).
Maritime Surveillance
Integrated Maritime Surveillance is about providing authorities interested or active in maritime
surveillance with ways to exchange information and data. Sharing data will make surveillance cheaper
and more effective, contributing to improve the capacity for response in case of emergencies and
increase the economic value of the associated sectors.

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
Marine life has adapted to thrive in the extreme ambient conditions found in the sea. Blue
biotechnology is concerned with the exploration and exploitation of the resulting diverse marine
organisms in order to develop new products.
Coastal and maritime tourism
The coastal and maritime tourism sector has been identified as an area with special potential to foster a
smart, sustainable and inclusive Europe. It is the biggest maritime sector in terms of gross added value
and employment. The EC has stated the will to support the development of trans-national and
interregional partnerships, networks, clusters and smart specialisation strategies for this specific sector.

In the context of designing and implementing a blue economy, it is important to highlight and consider
the principles of circular economy and, more in general, of sustainable production and consumption.
This in line with Sustainable Development Goals 12 and 14 of UN Agenda 2030, respectively tacking
‘Sustainable consumption and production patterns’ and ‘Conservation and sustainable use of the
oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development’. The institutional framework on Blue
economy at Mediterranean level, among which stand the Barcelona Convention 3 and the
Mediterranean Strategy for Sustainable Development 2016-25, the relevant process launched by the
Union for the Mediterranean4, the Bologna Charter, is being currently complemented by initiatives
with strong potential for future impact in the Mediterranean area. Namely, the BlueMed Initiative for
research and Innovation, the WEST MED Initiative for the sustainable development of the blue
economy and the macro regional strategy EUSAIR.
Contextually, European Territorial Cooperation programmes active in the area and ENI CBC MED
Programme, together with other financial channels such as HORIZON 2020, specific calls of DG MARE,
of DG DEVCO, DG NEAR, etc, finance the implementation of concrete projects.

The projects of the Interreg Med Programme are expected to closely collaborate with the launched
initiatives in the Mediterranean area and identify gaps and opportunities for further action in the blue
economy sectors, thus working in a complementary way to these initiatives.
The thematic communities will show the interrelation of their activities on the topic, demonstrate the
coming up results by bringing insights for the future maritime cooperation and providing
recommendations for improvement of the economic, environmental and social development aspects
of the blue economy.

In addition to the mentioned targeted sub-themes, two transversal issues are recommended to be
tackled by the projects in this call for proposals:
 Concerning the RIS3. The Mediterranean regions, once submitted their Smart Specialization
Strategies, have expressed the need to cooperate and coordinate their effort for the
upcoming steps: Implementation, Monitoring and Evaluation of these strategies (see
Monitoring mechanisms for Smart Specialisation strategies, JRC-IPTS, 2015). Project
proposals may help to this effort, following the regional strategies and the JRC-IPTS lines.
 Concerning the lack of territorial and thematic data on the innovation condition in the
Mediterranean area. Information that would feed new Decision Support Systems tackling the
general objective of the Priority Axis 1.

3In 2012, at the 17th Barcelona Convention Contracting Parties held in Paris, the CPs signed the Paris Declaration calling
for a "blue economy” to be established to safeguard and promote a clean, healthy and productive Mediterranean

4 On 17th November 2015, the 43 countries of the Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) adopted a Ministerial Declaration
on the blue economy.

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
As most of these sub-themes are directly linked to other priority axis of the MED programme, namely
Axis 3 (Environment: Protecting and promoting Mediterranean natural and cultural resources), the
projects are expected to link with them and to create integrated approaches.

Some aspects must be considered when approaching the stated themes. First of all, the territorial
declination of each one, referring to the Mediterranean specificities. A clear example is the blue energy
sector, where the conditions for technological development and exploitation of resources in the
Mediterranean are quite different from those existing in other seas, like the Atlantic or the North seas.
To this respect, the work and results delivered by previous projects provide elements that can serve
as the framework for the actions to be developed. (These results can be accessed through the MED
library and the Marina MED-COMCAP portal).

Second aspect is the concept of innovation and its different types. For the purposes of this specific
objective, innovation is considered in the sense of the categories defined by OECD in the Oslo Manual:
(i) Product Innovation: This involves a good or service that is new or significantly improved;
(ii) Process Innovation: This involves a new or significantly improved production or delivery
(iii) Marketing Innovation: This refers to a new marketing method involving significant changes
in product design or packaging, product placement, product promotion or pricing;
(iv) Organisational Innovation: This involves introducing a new organisational method in a
firm’s business practices, workplace organisation or external relations.

Finally, the interventions should address and take advantage, when possible and justified, of the
potentialities of the ICTs, the principles of the circular economy, the notion of demand-driven inno-
vation support, and the participative decision processes.

3.4. Possible actions

Types of actions consist mainly in the replicability and transfer of models and tools, transfer of
knowledge, awareness-raising, capitalization of tested instruments and tools, empowerment of
SMEs, development of Regional Innovation Strategies affecting the blue growth sector,
reinforcement of transnational activities of maritime clusters and networks

For this call for proposals, applicants are invited to propose exclusively M2+M3 (testing and
capitalising) project applications in the blue growth subtheme only.

Module 2-TESTING: Pilot demonstration actions and transferring activities to the territories
Non-exhaustive list of possible actions:
In the chosen blue growth sector testing, evaluating and demonstrating their added value and transfer
and replicability potential of:
 Decision support tools for innovation of SMEs
 Ameliorated instruments facilitating the links and the exchanges between private and public
 Replicability of successful public policies for innovation
 Innovation systems and processes using novel economic models (e.g.: innovation vouchers
schemes), demand-driven innovation (e.g.: innovative Public Procurement) and Public Private

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
 Supporting services for private sector in order to stimulate their innovation capacities in the
blue growth (Technology and market intelligence, capacity building, partnering and
networking, financial assessment)
 Mechanisms tackling the increased cooperation between research, SMEs and public sector
(quadruple helix) in order to stimulate innovation and entrepreneurship in the blue growth
 Creating or strengthening transnational networks of networks, clusters to achieve a
sustainable model of transnational cooperation of innovation actors in the blue growth

Module 3-CAPITALISING: Transfer, dissemination and capitalisation

Non-exhaustive list of possible actions:

 Transforming pilot initiatives in higher scale projects

 Replicability of developed and tested instruments
 Reformulating, complementing and improving results, activities and outputs concerning a
chosen blue growth sector, already obtained in previous cooperation projects approved by
the Med Programme and/or other related, Cooperation Programmes (e.g.: European
Commission Thematic programmes, European Territorial Cooperation, EMFF…)
 Implementing public policies for innovation in a blue growth subsector or adopting action
plans by public authorities
 Transferring improved transnational systems or processes to other territories or relevant
 Engaging Regions (beyond direct partnership) to strengthen connections and cooperation of
existing smart specialisation strategies (RIS3) at transnational level (enhanced cooperation
through cooperation platforms…)
 Creating or strengthening sustainable active networks of the quadruple helix system
cooperating actors in the blue growth sectors with a link to existing or foreseen European
networks and platforms (e.g.: Seville S3 platform, INTERREG EUROPE thematic platforms…)
 Strengthening existing maritime clusters and networks and increasing their connectivity and
synergies at MED level
 Building capacity and empowering
 Public Authorities in demand-driven innovation (public tenders, procedures…), and novel
economic models (e.g.: ICT, Innovation Voucher Schemes) stimulating interdisciplinary and
transnational cooperation
 Cluster Managers and members in demand-driven innovation and novel economic models
(e.g.: ICT, Innovation Voucher Schemes) stimulating interdisciplinary and transnational

In the design of the activities, a specific attention should be given to the choice of output indicators of
the planned intervention and its contribution to the Programme output indicator system, so as to
ensure that the project outputs are in coherence with the Programme expectations.
For more information regarding typologies of activities and output Indicators the project can use, see
factsheet “Type of activities and deliverables” of the Programme manual
For more information regarding qualitative criteria for activities and outputs, see factsheet “Standards
for activities and productions” of the Programme manual.

3.5. Beneficiaries and target groups

Each type of project (considering its focus and modular approach) requires the best definition of the
beneficiaries and target groups. For example, while a more end-user oriented project will demand the

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
strong connection to civil society and/or professional organizations, a mainstreaming project or
module, will request the involvement of public authorities (policy-makers and public managers) having
the adequate position and competencies to propose or change norms, regulations and plans.

Specifically for this call, considering the transfer, replicability and capitalisation emphasis given to this
call, attention should be particularly paid to the involvement of regional and national level structures,
to ensure policy support and mainstreaming of projects results.

Furthermore, in order to ensure a higher geographical coverage and a higher transnational character,
the minimum requirement of the Programme concerning the number of participating states is
increased to at least five (5) financing partners (EU and IPA countries) :
- from at least five different countries from the Interreg MED Programme area and
- with at least four of the partners located in the Union part of the Interreg MED Programme
area (four ERDF partners within the MED Programme area)

The definition of key actors (as beneficiaries and target groups) should be extended also to all those
networks and organizations that have an important experience in targeting and influencing policy
makers (e.g. CoR, ARE, CPMR…) or whose involvement can ensure a multiplier effect in mobilizing
target groups.
Also social and economic actors (economic and registered citizenship associations) may be concerned
/ targeted, because they can adopt good practices and standards, thus changing socio-economic
Other potentially relevant partners are organizations that have specific and scientific competences
providing expertise for the production of outputs.

Furthermore, in regards to the specificity of the Priority Axis 1 referring to the reinforcement of the
innovation activities of public and private actors in the blue growth sector for this call for proposals, as
well as aiming at an increase of the transnational activities of innovative clusters and networks, SMEs
role is deemed indispensable in all sectors of the blue economy. The active and direct participation of
SMEs in the projects is crucial for the achievement of the set goals of this Priority Axis 1. In this respect,
the direct involvement of SMEs as beneficiaries is obligatory in the project applications of this third
call for modular projects.

This participation of SMEs organisations can be ensured under the De Minimis or the GBER rules (see
Factsheet on State Aid). In particular under GBER status (50% of ERDF co financing) the participation
of SMEs is strongly encouraged, as their approach and perspective can benefit the project in a unique
way, as long as the SMEs understand the true purpose of a collaborative transnational programme.

The project activities in the Priority Axis 1, focussing on innovation and SMEs business development,
transnational cooperation, internationalization and clustering in the blue growth, are linked to the
development of tools and instruments for the SMEs. In this respect, the application of the result of the
transnational cooperation is affecting SMEs. Thus the latter constitute as well the main target group
of the core projects activities that should be reinforced and considered in the project applications.

It is recommended that projects create synergies with entities/partners of projects of other territorial
cooperation (and thematic) EU programmes (to be specified with concrete indications and, if possible,
agreement letters), as well as with relevant International, EU and UN agencies / organizations
enhancing good practices and policy recommendations to capitalize.

We would like also to encourage the participation of organisations from IPA countries, which will bring
an additional value to the transnational cooperation character of our programme.

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
Main categories Examples for S.O. 1.1.
Municipality, province, department, community of
municipalities, network of municipalities, especially their
local public authority
departments of environment, economic development,
sustainable development or planning, tourism
Regional council, especially their departments of innovation,
regional public authority environment, economic development, sustainable
development or planning, tourism, territorial cooperation
Ministries, national agencies for innovation, environment,
national public authority economy, sustainable development or planning, tourism,
cooperation, etc.
Local or regional development agency, environmental agency,
sectorial agency innovation agency, etc.
Technology poles, public transport, utility company (water
infrastructure and (public) service
supply, electricity supply, sewage, gas, waste collection, etc.),
interest groups including NGOs Organisations working in the fieldof blue economy
University faculty, college, research institution, RTD facility,
higher education and research
research cluster, etc.
education/training centre and vocational training centre for tourism, territorial planning, …
enterprise, except SME
SME Micro, small, medium enterprise
Chamber of commerce, chamber of trade and crafts, business
business support organisation
clusters, business angels, etc.
European Grouping for Territorial Cooperation working in the
fields of innovation and blue growth
Under national law, under international law, working in the
International organisation, EEIG
fields of innovation
Citizens, end users of services developed and any given actor
General public *
in the field of innovation.
* General public is only relevant as target group

3.6. Financial allocation and project duration

The indicative financial allocation for this Call for Proposals, for all priority axis, is 32M€ in total.
The overall ERDF envelope in the framework of this Call is 30M€.
The breakdown between Axes is 8M€ for Axis 1 and 22M€ for Axis 3.
The overall IPA envelope in the framework of this call is 2M€. The breakdown between Axis 1 and 3
will be made by the Programme Committee on the basis of the quality of the proposals submitted.

Partners are co-financed at 85% or 50% (for partners under GBER Regulation 651/2014).
See Factsheet “Partners co-financing and location of project activities” of the Programme Manual for
more information regarding the co-financing rates.

Project budget should be between min 2.5M€ and max 4M€ in total, depending on the planned
activities and the partnership involved.

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
Under the S.O. 1.1, an indicative number of 2-4 projects are expected to be approved.

Projects are invited to plan the beginning of their activities on 1st November 2019 and finalise them
by the 30th June 2022 (projects duration should not exceed 32 months)

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
4. References

4.1. Interreg MED programme documents

- INTERREG MED Cooperation Programme 2014-2020
- Diagnostic territorial analysis of the INTERREG MED territorial cooperation programme
- INTERREG MED Programme Manual

4.2. MED projects 2007-2013

- MED Project Library
- MED projects data base
- Projects to consider among others :
o 3C 4 INCUBATORS (Position paper)
o CITEK (map)
o CREATIVEMED (toolkit)
o CREATIVEMED (white paper)
o SHA.P.E.S.
o MARINAMED (Integrated Maritime Approach)

4.3. Regulations/ Directives

- Directive 2014/24/EU of on public procurement

4.4. Communications and proposals from the Commission

- Communication From The Commission To The European Parliament, The Council, The European
Economic And Social Committee And The Committee Of The Regions: Blue Growth–
Opportunities For Marine And Maritime Sustainable Growth (COM 2012 494 Final):
- Communication from the Commission Towards an Integrated Maritime Policy for better
governance in the Mediterranean COM(2009) 466 final
- Communication From The Commission: Innovation In The Blue Economy: Realising The Potential
Of Our Seas And Oceans For Jobs And Growth - COM(2014) 254/2 (13/05/2014): Http://Eur-
- Communication From The Commission To The European Parliament, The Council, The European
Economic And Social Committee And The Committee Of The Regions, “Open Data – An Engine

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
For Innovation, Growth And Transparent Governance) Http://Eur-
- Communication From The Commission To The European Parliament, The Council, The European
Economic And Social Committee And The Committee Of The Regions Social Business Initiative -
Creating a Favourable Climate For Social Enterprises, Key Stakeholders In The Social Economy
And Innovation COM(2011) 682 Final (Http://Eur-
- Communication From The Commission To The European Parliament, The Council, The European
Economic And Social Committee And The Committee Of The Regions A European Strategy For
More Growth And Jobs In Coastal And Maritime Tourism COM(2014) 086 FinalHttp://Eur-

4.5. Programmes and initiatives co-financed by the European Union

- European Commission Directorate Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy:;
- HORIZON 2020 to HorizonEurope (2021-2027)
- Seville S3 platform
- European Cluster Observatory
- European Cluster Collaboration Platform
- European Cluster Alliance
- Keep data base -
- Eurostat:
- European Commission Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and
- European Commission Directorate-General for the Environment: ;
- European Commission Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries:
- European Commission Directorate-General for Research, Science and Innovation:
- European Commission Directorate-General for Education and Culture:
- European Commission Directorate-General for Energy:
- European Commission Directorate General for Communications Networks, Content and
- InvestEU Programme -

4.6. Bibliography and other sources

- Cluster
o Michael E. Porter, On Competition, Updated and Expanded Edition, 2008.
o OECD, Oslo Manual: Guidelines for Collecting and Interpreting Innovation Data, 3rd
Edition, 2005

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects
o European Cluster Observatory, The Cluster Initiative Greenbook 2.0, Lindqvist, G.;
Ketels, C.; Sölvell, Ö., 2013
o How to support SME Policy from Structural Funds, European Commission,
Directorate-General for Enterprise and Industry, 2014

- Smart Specialization Strategy

o Monitoring Mechanisms for Smart Specialisation Strategies, JRC-IPTS, 2015
o Guide to Research and Innovation Strategies for Smart Specialisations (RIS 3), JRC-
IPTS, 2012
o OECD, Regions and Innovation: Collaborating across Borders, in OECD Reviews of
Regional Innovation, 2013;

- Public Procurement of Innovation

o Guidance for Public Authorities on Public Procurement of Innovation, Procurement
of Innovation Platform, 2014
o Public Procurement as a Driver of Innovation in SMEs and Public Services,
Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, 2014

- Blue Growth
o Developing the international dimension of the Integrated Maritime Policy of the
European Union (COM(2009)536)
o Support activities for the development of maritime clusters in the Mediterranean
and Black Sea areas, DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, 2014
o Territorial Observation No 8 – August 2013. Territorial Dynamics in Europe. Regions
Integrating Land and Sea, 2013
o Support to the development of sea basin cooperation in the Mediterranean, the
Adriatic and Ionian and the Black Sea, EUNETMAR, 2014
o Guide on EU funding for the tourism sector (2014-2020); European Commission,
Directorate-General for Enterprise and Industry, 2014
o European Union Maritime Security Strategy - Council of the European Union, 2014

o Research And Innovation Initiative For Blue Jobs And Growth In The Mediterranean
Area - The Bluemed Initiative,BLUE MED Vision document and Mapping, 2014
o International ocean governance: an agenda for the future of our oceans – Joint
CommunicationJOIN(2016) 49 final
o Initiative for the sustainable development of the blue economy in the western
Mediterranean – the WEST MED Initiative, COM(2017) 183 final

Terms of Reference S.O.1. – Call for proposals 2018 – modular M2+M3 projects