West Transdanubia, the Region of Initiatives?
- Total area of the region 11328 km2: NUTS 2 level
- More than 1 million inhabitants
- Shares borders with 4 countries
- Second best developed economy in Hungary
- Investment per capita is above the national average
- Business relations are getting stronger between enterprises
- Promoting clusterisation in several sectors
- Rich in natural areas and natural resources
The West Transdanubian Regional Development Agency Non-profit Company started operating on 1st July 1999 with its seat in Sopron. In order to achieve a balanced presence throughout the Region, offices were established in all five cities with county rights. Due to the years' tasks and responsibilities, the number of its employees has been constantly growing. Now, the Agency has almost 70 employees.
The Agency has an active role in establishing and operating professional relationships within and outside of the Region, in economic development and in fostering local initiatives. One of the most important tasks of the Agency is the implementation of the comprehensive territorial development programme of the West-Transdanubian Region (2007-2013/2020) through involving the most possible stakeholders in the joint planning and work. Due to its versatile work the Agency has become a key player in the development of the West Transdanubian Region.
Activities of the Agency
Intermediary body of the New Szechenyi Plan West Transdanubian Operational Programme
The Agency assists in the distribution of app. 550 million EUR to applicants in 2007-2013, prepares calls for proposals, participates in decision preparation, manages the contracting process with winning applications and monitors the implementation of the projects as well. The Regional Operational Programme co-financed by the European Union supports the development of the Region in 5 areas:
1. Regional economic development
2. Tourism development
3. Urban development
4. Environmental and transport infrastructure development
5. Infrastructural development of local and territorial public services.
The Department of Strategic Planning develops and monitors the Regional Operational Programme and Regional Action Plans, prepares regional calls for proposals, coordinates and implements regional key initiatives. The Department also participates in the preparation and consultation process of Development Programmes in Hungary.
Recognizing the possibility of project generation and development, the Agency established its department for project development. The tasks of the department for project development are to improve the ideas of the region with the support of the Agency, to realize optimal partnership, to harmonize regional project initiatives, as well as to organize and to coordinate project ideas according to regional demands.
Pannon Business Initiative (PBI) is working for the economic development of West Transdanubian Region with contributing to the coordination of economic development actors and with fostering innovative co-operations and activities.
Participation in International Programmes
Ever since the millennium the Agency has been inspiring and supporting the development of the cross-border social and business relationships of the Region, the improvement of its territorial integration and cohesion via participation in several International Programmes.
Now the Agency participates in 4 ongoing EU co-financed projects:
- EURIS - European Collaborative and Open Regional Innovation Strategies (Interreg IVC Programme)
- SETA - South-East Transport Axis (South East Transnational Cooperation Programme /SEE/)
- Natur-Kulinarium (Austria-Hungary Cross-Border Cooperation Programme /AT-HU ETE/)
- RECOM - Regional Cooperation Management 2014 (Austria-Hungary Cross-Border Cooperation Programme /AT-HU ETE/)
The Agency took part in several successfully implemented international projects:
CENTRAL EUROPE PROGRAMME
- CENTROPE_TT - Tools for Transnational Innovation Support in Centrope (01.01.2009-30.09.2012): The core aim of CENTRIS was to implement tools and communication structures which will make R&D activities in the CENTROPE region easily accessible for enterprises as well as visible and provide attractive instruments for co-operations among enterprises and R&D institutes in future.
- CEBBIS - Central Europe Branch Based Innovation Support (01.01.2010-31.03.2013): The project aimed at improving technology transfer towards SMEs and to ensure tools, methods and processes for supporting innovation and technology transfer.
CROSS-BORDER COOPERATION PROGRAMMES 2007-2013
Hungary-Slovakia Cross-Border Cooperation Programme 2007-2013
HUSKI - Hungary-Slovakia Initiative for a Sustainable Cooperation (01.09.2009-31.08.2010): The Agency was the Lead Partner in the project. The objective of the project was to foster cooperation among cross-border organisations, institutes with the help of common thinking, planning and acting in the areas of common interest.
Austria-Hungary Cross-Border Cooperation Programme 2007-2013
RECOM - Regional Cooperation Management (01.01.2009-31.12.20111): The project as a platform of exchange of experiences and regional cooperation intends to support the successful implementations of ideas, initiatives and projects planned with regions and between regions.
EDUCORB - Educational Cooperation in the Border Region (01.01.2008-31.07.2012): The goal of the project was to establish a sustainable cooperation between the West Transdanubian border region and the Austrian Industrieviertel in order to improve the language-, cultural- and economic skills of the youth.
ESPAN - Energy Strategy for Pannonia (01.01.2009-31.12.2012): The objective of the project was to establish the sustainable energy development sector through the bilateral and interregional cooperation of the Austrian and Hungarian regions on regional, community and private level.
IRIS - Interregional Innovation System (01.09.2009-28.02.2013): The project aimed at supporting the innovative growth potentials in the border region through contributing to the development of a common interregional innovation system.
LIFE-LONG LEARNING PROGRAMME
Leonardo Da Vinci Programme
Let's develope Europe - together! (01.06.2006-31.05.2008) The main objective of the project was to prepare the staff of the WTRDA for the planning period 2007-2013 through providing them a nine-week internship at Italian, Belgian, Austrian, English, German, Swedish and Finnish development and training organisations.
Preparing regional actors for receiving Structural Funds during the planning period 2007-2013. (01.06.2006-31.05.2008) The project intended to support the regional and rural development organisations of the counties and subregions in the West Transdanubian Region in order to prepare their colleagues for becoming development experts who are able to get and maintain international contacts as well as support the local actors of the region in the period of 2007-2013.
How Brussels gets to the West Transdanubian Region? (01.06.2008-31.05.2010): The project intended to improve the advocacy of the region through open communication and feedbacks and to train experts who discover the lobbying opportunities of Brussels and become able to build and operate international relationships.
SIXTH FRAMEWORK PROGRAMME
Bridge2Growth - Boosting Regional Investments in RTD - Guiding Europe to Growth (01.12.2005-30.11.2007): The project aimed at boosting private investments in research and especially exploring ways to promote SME involvement and investment in the RTD process.
EUROCOOP - Regional Innovation Policy Impact Assessment and Benchmarking Process: Cooperation for Sustainable Regional Innovation (01.06.2005-31.03.2008): The objective of the project was to develop the framework for an appropriate impact assessment of regional research and innovation policies.
CEE-ClusterNetwork - Central-Eastern European Cluster and Network Area (01.09.2006-31.10.2009): The main objective of the project was to find more coherencies in the methodology of how cluster policy is implemented in the different regions and to shape common policy in future through the definition of common strategic issues, strategies and programs.
BIS-RTD - Building and Improving Support for RTD Policy and Public Spending (01.12.2006-31.05.2008): The project aimed at establishing a permanent co-operation platform among European regions to facilitate the emergence and circulation of good practices and contribute to RTD policy making coordination, so as to ensure the spreading and (partial) adoption of effective adoption models of good practices.
Austria-Hungary INTERREG IIIA Programme
HUMANKOOP - Training and development of business developers, organizational management and coordinated actions in West Transdanubian Region (01.05.2005-30.06.2006): The project aimed at contributing to the economic development through promoting the cooperation and organizational development of business actors and at implementing together investment programmes with the intent of elaborating the working relationships with Austrian partner organisations.
INTERREG IIIB Programme
TECPARKNET - Science and technology park co-operation in EU-Future Region (01.09.2004-31.08.2006): The project aimed at upgrading the West Transdanubian regional economy by combining economic, scientific and technology resources, comparative strengths and infrastructure in order to improve competitiveness.
INTERREG IIIC Programme
REGINS - REGional standardized INterfaces for a better integration of regional SME's in the European Economy (01.01.2004-31.03.2007): It was the common cooperation project of the partner regions with the aim of searching and supporting technology-oriented projects resulting in breakthrough in the field of automotive industry, biotechnology and logistics.
GRIP_IT - Governance of Regionally Integrated Projects using Innovative Tools. Structural funds implementation in an integrated approach (01.04.2005-31.12.2007): The Regional Framework Operation GRIP_IT aimed at promoting good practices and developing innovative methods for programming and implementing Structural Funds investments in their regions.
CLOE - Cluster linked over Europe (01.06.2007-31.03.2008): The objectives of the project were to enable regions with a common interest in cluster-building techniques and in fostering cluster relationships to meet and jointly develop processes and methodologies for the establishment and management of clusters and networks; and to develop business opportunities for companies within and between the clusters.
INTERREG IVC PROGRAMME
SCINNOPOLI - Scanning Innovation Policy Impact (01.01.2010-31.12.2011): The project aimed at supporting the efficiency of regional innovation policies with the help of developing an impact assessment system in order to improve the regional competitiveness of enterprises, to establish employments and to enhance the regional welfare.
C2CN - Cradle to Cradle Network (01.01.2010-31.03.2012): The goals of the project were to reduce raw materials' utilisation, to generate less waste and less environmental pollution as well as to enhance innovation and economic development by applying C2C philosophy which focuses on recycling in close loops.
ICT-VN - Promotion of ICTs usage by SMEs as an enabler of Value Networks (01.01.2010-31.12.2012): The overall objective of the project was to increase the impact of regional strategies for the Information Society and ICT promotion and development in SMEs in order to transform business models, to promote networking and to improve regional economic competitiveness.
PIMMS CAPITAL - Capitalising on Partner Initiatives in Mobility Management Services (01.10.2010-30.11.2012): The project aimed at stimulating modal shift towards more sustainable forms of transport by increasing the implementation of high quality mobility management techniques and policies in European regions.
Further scope of activities
Besides preparing proposals and participating in EU funded projects, the Agency supports and involves regional stakeholders to benefit from these projects. The Agency's sphere of interests include almost all types of development and project, such as ESF, expert mobility, urban transport and mobility, rural development, policy design, EU 2020, EU Danube Strategy, as well as R&D, innovation and business development.