Side Event


Blue Growth Community Mid-Term Conference

Thursday, 22nd November

Friday, 23rd November

Casa Llotja de Mar | Barcelona

InnoBlueGrowth organizes the Blue Growth mid-term conference to gather and to encourage the Mediterranean business community in support of the “Blue Economy: The Blue Way of Life”

The InnoBlueGrowth project, driving the Blue Growth Community, organizes its transnational Mid-Term Conference “Blue Economy: The Blue Way of Life”, which will gather experts and key players from the Mediterranean region. The event will take place on November 22nd-23rd 2018, in Barcelona, Spain.

The Conference’s purpose is to reflect on the sustainable dimension of Blue Growth, whether it will be in terms of development, mitigation of issues, planning, or governance. The sessions aim to put into perspective the results of all Blue Growth thematic projects for a general peer reviewing from all participants and discuss about the Blue Economy. In addition, it will be the occasion to present Blue Growth projects including updates about their main activities, goals and services, providing information on development and opportunities to all Blue Growth Community.

In this sense, InnoBlueGrowth coordinates the Conference’s Agenda in order to discuss topics such as: Public Engagement and Awareness, Market Development, Sustainability, and Clusters in the blue growth context, involving the modular and integrated projects: iBlueMaestralePelagosProteus4Helix+ and Mistral.  

The Mid-Term event will take place in the framework of the MedaWeek 2018, an event organized by the Association of the Mediterranean Chambers of Commerce and Industry (ASCAME). This event will give to the Blue Growth Community’s mid-term conference a strong added-value and a high visibility across various media channels, including social media. It intends to draw attention to opinion leaders and decision-makers, institutional bodies, funding entities, experts and researchers, in order to promote a favorable environment for networking and create synergies among the projects but also among all the participants.  

This mid-term conference is a milestone for the Blue Growth Community and InnoBlueGrowth, which main objective is to build a real community of projects dealing with Blue Growth. This innovative Blue Growth community allows the reinforcement of the cross-cutting and integrated dynamics between projects and transnational key stakeholders. These dynamics are an indispensable condition to support Mediterranean clusters in their transnational activities processes in order to foster market development in areas so far not fully developed or needing further stimulation. Moreover, InnoBlueGrowth enhances the dissemination and transferability of projects results, consequently ensuring a wider and deeper impact towards external multilevel stakeholders, contributing to the sustainable socio-economic development of the Mediterranean area through innovative investments in the Blue economy.

The InnoBlueGrowth Project counts with a €1,47 million funding (of which €1,25M of EU co-funding) in the framework of the transnational cooperation programme Interreg Med.

For more information, please contact

Provisional Agenda

November 22nd

08:30 – 09:00 Registration

09:15 – 10:15 Common Inauguration MedaWeek 2018

10:15 – 10:45 Coffee Break – Networking

10:45 – 11:45 The transition towards a sustainable future: a Blue Growth outlook

This session aims to outline the state-of-the art of the Blue economy in the Mediterranean. Indeed, the need for the establishment of a common understanding of blue economy sectors and for a clear framework in order to facilitate synergies and cooperation for a sustainable growth, is vital.

Among the themes to be addressed are the definition of an accountable, inclusive and cross-sectoral Blue Economy, the outline of the steps towards a sustainable growth, highlighting the main identified challenges and opportunities, and some potential answers thereof.

This discussion will be the occasion to introduce key points towards the definition of the “blue way of life,” including a definition of sustainability from an economic, social and environmental perspective, widening knowledge sharing among scientists, policy makers, decision leaders, entrepreneurs and citizens is primordial.

Issue 1: The path to blue success, from design to implementation
Issue 2: Market development: environmental issues and new trends in main blue sectors
Issue 3: Challenges & Opportunities in the Blue economy.

Moderator: Mrs. Caterina Praticò, InnoBlueGrowth’s Lead Partner

  • Mr. Miguel García-Herraiz, Deputy Secretary General, Water & Environment, Union for the Mediterranean, Contribution on issue 1
  • Mr. Paul Tourret, “Mediterranean challenges for Blue markets and Blue challenges for Mediterranean economy” Director of ISEMAR
  • Mr. Fabio Fugazzotto, “Challenges and opportunities in the Blue Economy”, Head of Marine Innovation, Enel Green Power

Debate and Q&A from the plenary (15 min.).

11:45 – 14:15 Governance and Cooperation models: tools for innovation and integrated global sustainability

This session aims to share views on:
  • The existing challenges and opportunities in the implementation of sustainable business models;
  • Setting common standards and guidelines for a sustainable Blue Growth: SWOT analyses to debate among different quantitative and qualitative indicators to monitor and measure achievements regarding the implementation of sustainability in Blue Growth;
  • The experiences of Public-Private Partnerships as well as the 4-helix partnership (Academia, Private sector, Public sector and civil society).
  • The extent to which a broad and resilient partnership can increase innovation and sustainability, and if there is a specific or preferred approach for 4 – helix partnerships.
Best practices will also be presented, notably of:
  • The 3 – pillar Business model with the iBlue project
  • The 4-helix economic governance with the 4Helix+ project
  • Online tools for innovation capacities with the Pelagos project
  • Sustainable blue energy labels with the MAESTRALE project
Moderator (TBC).
Mrs. Nadia Preghenella or Mrs. Lucia Cicero, “The 3- Pillars businessmodel for innovation and sustainability in the yachting sector,” University of Udine, iBlue project
Mrs. Georgina Padilla, “How to apply the 4Helix+ methodology?” Barcelona Chamber of Commerce, 4HELIX+ project
Mr. Roberto Sandrini, (tbc.) “Cluster on maritime surveillance: maritime security and safety mechanisms in the MED area,” Chamber of Commerce of Venice, ProTEUs Project
Mr. Markos Damasiotis, Presentation tbd. on marine renewable energies, CRES, PELAGOS project
Mr. Riccardo Pulselli, University of Siena, MAESTRALE project, presentation tbd.
Mr. Raimondi Attilio and Ms. Tiziana de Nittis, Emilia-Romagna region, MISTRAL project.
Debate and Q&A from the plenary

14:15 – 15:30 Lunch – Networking

15:30 – 16:45 Supporting a sustainable Blue economy through the internationalization of clusters in the Mediterranean

The objective of this session is to discuss about the Blue Economy with an application to clusters, to reveal the critical factors that demonstrated success and can act as case studies or best practices for new implementation models, in order to be effective and become an inspiration for the emerging ones. Besides, the session will analyze how those best practices could bring an added value to the blue economy, in particular in sectors such as blue energy, yachting, maritime surveillance or structures like clusters. Starting from the observation that the creation of clusters, albeit potential points needing improvement, have been beneficial to the dynamism of enterprises in the Mediterranean, several issues will be addressed in a more specific way:
Issue 1: The Public approach
How have public authorities been supporting blue engagement? What roles do Public authorities play in supporting clusters? What is the added value of a sustainable Blue Economy for Public authorities? What is the role of citizens in
these interactions, and in support of the blue economy through clusters activities?
Issue 2: Cross-cutting sustainability
Why is sustainability getting easier in some blue economy sub-sectors than in others? What are the main difficulties and positive drivers helping the implementation of sustainability in Blue Growth? What about social sustainability? How can environmental sustainability be enhanced? How can it be considered and included as a full part of a healthy economic prospect for the blue economy?
Issue 3: Market development. Cluster and Economic development
How are clusters becoming key structures to enhance economic development? How can the access to funding be eased through cluster dynamics? How theses dynamics are beneficial to quadruple Helix actors in terms of access to funding for R&D projects?
Moderator: Speaker TBC – InnoBlueGrowth team member
Lazio Region representative (tbc.), contribution on issue 1
SCP/RAC Representative, Regional Centre for Sustainable, Consumption and Production UN Environment/Mediterranean Action Plan – Barcelona (tbd.), contribution on issue 2
Mr. Roberto Cimino, “The role of Clusters in the development of a sustainable blue economy,” President of Cluster Tecnologico Nazionale Blue Italian Growth
Debate and Q&A from the plenary


16:45 – 17:15 Closure first day

This session will be the occasion to present the conclusion of the first day and to announce the second day details.
Annibale Cutrona, Director of the CoNIsMa, InnoBlueGrowth project

Provisional Agenda

November 23rd

08:30 – 09:00 Registration

09:15 – 10:15 Opening and Welcome Speech Common Inauguration MedaWeek18

10:15 – 10:45 Coffee Break – Networking 

10:45 – 12:30 Blue Growth Community moving forward: awareness raising, mitigating pressures and involving younger generations

The objective of this session is to open a direct debate – 2/3 panelists will debate on the demonstrations coming from previous sessions and interact with the public- between the Blue Growth projects and the relevant stakeholders.

Presentation of key topics:

Panel 1: The importance of awareness raising

Thematic introduction and moderation: Mr. Benoît Garrigues, Head of the Euro – Mediterranean cooperation department, Région Sud Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur (tbc.)
Alejandro González, Head of Blue Tourism project, Eco Union
Mr. Stefano Malatesta,“Ocean literacy and place stewardship: key-drivers to improve the environmental awareness and to promote blue economies,” ULR CoNISMa Milano “Bicocca” University
Jason Bongailas, Malta Marittima
Mr. Mounir Ghribi, “The development of skills and the creation of career opportunities in the blue economy by matching job profiles with market needs,” National Institute for Oceanography and Applied Geophysics
Debate and Q&A from the plenary

Panel 2: Technological solution for reducing pollution

Moderator: Ioannis Chatjigeorgiou , Professor at the National Technical University of Athens, InnoBlueGrowth project partner
Representative of BLUEMED (tbc.)
Mr. Roberto Grassi, BleuTourMed_C3 horizontal project, Sustainable tourism Community
Mr. Nikos Ntaras, “Smart environmental & energy management of ports, the PERFFECT project” CRES
Debate and Q&A from the plenary

Panel 3: Economic models thought for/developed by young people

Moderator: Mr. Tsipiras, Insuleur, InnoBlueGrowth Associated partner
Mrs. Baya Aissaoui, Mediterranean Youth for Water network (MedYWat)
Mr. Emanuele Garzia, President, ASCAME Training and Education Commission
Mrs. Alessandra Romolo, “Women and the Youth, two winning cards for Blue Growth. From university research to spin off: the case of ‘’”
Representative from the Occitanie Region (tbc.), “Territorial policies in education to support training for a blue way of life”
Debate and Q&A from the plenary

12:15 – 14:00 Transnational Cooperation in the Mediterranean: a key issue for integrated actions towards Blue Growth

This session will finally outline the importance of transnational cooperation in support to integrated approaches and multi-level governance for the development and reinforcement of a sustainability in the blue economy. Some of the issues to be addressed will be:

● How could transnational cooperation be used as a tool for diminishing the costs and achieving a more efficient implementation of blue economy sectors (i.e. blue energies, yachting, maritime surveillance, among others)?
● Broad and resilient partnerships for coordination and collaboration of blue economy projects and initiatives.
● Dialogue and consultation with national and regional stakeholders: a necessary approach for a successful cross-border implementation of blue growth projects, and to boost research and innovation in maritime sectors.
● Is sustainability taken into account within the different phases of cycle project management i.e. planning, managing, implementation and evaluation – of blue growth projects? To which extent?
● Private-Public cooperation:

• Assess and communicate their performance on these goals and targets.
• Create an economic and legislative playing field level that provides the Blue Economy with adequate incentives and rules.
• Actively cooperate, sharing information, knowledge, best practices, lessons learned, perspectives, and ideas, to realize a sustainable and prosperous future for all.
• Recognize that the maritime and land-based economies are interlinked and that many of the threats facing marine environments originate on land.

Moderator: Mr. Davide Strangis, Executive Secretary of the InterMediterranean Commission of the CPMR, InnoBlueGrowth project partner
Mr. Christos Economou, Head of Unit DG MARE on Sea – basin strategies, maritime regional cooperation and maritime security, European Commission
Mrs. Maria Groueva, Interreg Med Programme, Joint Secretariat
Mr. Antonio del Pino, National Representative for Spain (tbc.) as Lead Partners of the PANORAMED project
Mrs. Barbara di Piazza (tbc.), Head of Joint Secretariat, ADRION Interreg Programme
Mr. Jean-Pierre Halkin, Head of Unit DG REGIO on Macro – regions, Transnational/Interregional Cooperation, IPA, Enlargement (tbc.), European Commission
Debate and Q&A from the plenary

14:00 – 14:45 Blue Growth Lunch – Community members and speakers only

End of the Conference

14:45 – 16:00 Side meetings







Cambra de Comerç de Barcelona

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Co-funded by:

European Regional Development Fund    A way to make Europe