Economic policy of the European Union puts emphasis on the use of knowledge and innovation what as been underlined in the Agenda 2020. The main problem becomes the fact that around 90% of the enterprises in its area constitute small and medium companies, so it is the dominant number. They are characterised first of all by the lack of sufficient finance and the human resources which would make it possible for them to take part in the transfer of knowledge and innovation as well as the implementation for the development purposes. That constitutes the competitiveness limitation of these enterprises, and at the same time the competitiveness limitation of the European Union economy on an international scale. An additional problem is the insufficient representation of women in the existing sectors dealing with the use of new technologies and innovations. These sectors are dominated by men which is also incoherent with the current model of social policy of the UE.
In order to support the development of European Union economy by reduction of the unprofitable conditions, The West Pomeranian Business School, with the participation of the partners from: Spain which is the leader of the project, Greece, The Netherlands and France has undertaken the project “Innovation and Knowledge European Management’s Agents” (INMA) – an agent managing the knowledge and innovation. The project is conducted within the framework of Leonardo da Vinci programme – lifelong learning – transfer of innovation.
This project runs from 1st of October 2010 until 30th of September 2012
Budget: 384 860,- euro
The project’s aim is the creation of new occupation profile in the form of an Innovation Agent (IA). Their task is going to be the constant giving the expert advice concerning the innovative needs (during the project the “tool kit” shall be worked out – the “tool box” which shall include the needs concerning knowledge, skills and competence of the future agent) to the entrepreneurs, innovators, managers, as well as creating culture and innovative climate on the level of local, regional, domestic and European institutions through the newly created network of innovation agents.
IA shall be able to analyse the tangible and intangible elements of the organisation (enterprise, institution), shall discover and suggest the possibilities of improving their functioning, thereby make it possible to gain the optimum strategies of the development of the entities concerned what, as a consequence, should give the competitive advantage over other companies on the market.
Offered occupation IA should work in every area of human’s activities (from industry to medicine or any kind of services), but first of all in the human resources area. Therefore, IA should concentrate their knowledge and skills, and then their profile, on 5 great fields of knowledge (educational field):
- New Technologies in the information and communication – ICT
- Strategic Management
- Human Resources Management
- Knowledge Management
- Corporate Social Responsibility
To use knowledge in the above mentioned areas, IA should have the specific skills in:
- Time management
- Analysis of the skills and solving the problems
Besides the listed features IA must show the specific attitude, evinced mainly by:
- Giving systematically the importance to problems being solved
- Giving systematically the importance to the obtained results
- Full commitment to the obligations concerning the occupation
- Participation and team work
- Opinion and experience share
- Open-mindedness to the work environment and its gradual development
- Adaptation to new situations within the area of professional competence
- Entrepreneurial mentality whilst doing the job
- Being confidential
- Respect for the healthy, safe and environmentally accepted job
Creating the new profile shall first of all overcome the barriers to implement the innovation and be the response to the above mentioned needs of the European Union. New occupation shall be autonomic and external (outsourcing) what solves the financial problem of small and medium enterprises concerning the new workers employment. The company is going to use the agent’s service according to the identified needs. An innovation agent will cooperate in the network with other agents, and will additionally play role of the specialist and an intermediary between the training institutions and a specified organisations (entrepreneurs). The same value of European knowledge shall be transferred to every company. The development of innovation of particular quality will be possible. This innovation will be updated and adjusted to changing environment through the constant cooperation.
Innovative nature of the project is also underlined by the manner in which the new occupation is implemented to the market. Training concerning the profile shall be carried out by the parallel use of virtual and traditional methods in scope of the designed tool 2.0., equal for all the partner countries.
Creation of the new workplaces and trainings concerning new profile will facilitate introducing the graduates into the market. The supply in higher than demand in this matter. Moreover, by using the selection of agent candidates, with the special emphasis on women’s participation, it will enable to include in the areas where their participation was insufficient so far.
The project consists of eight working packets (WP). In each of them The West Pomeranian Business School takes part, and in one WP5 2.0 European Social Community is a leader responsible for the coordination and completion of the whole packet.
Moreover, WPBS is preparing one of five knowledge modules entitled “Strategic Management” for the needs of the tool kit as well as the trainings for the chosen innovation agent candidates (3-month training for the chosen 15-25 persons from each of the partner country). This module requires lots of research and an intellectual effort in order to adjust it to the wanted and expected profile of an innovation agent (Innovation Knowledge Management Agent).
The participation in the coordinating works concerning the cohesion of all 5 modules carried out by each partner separately, shall be the serious intellectual challenge for the project team (interpretation, cultural, definition, terminology differences etc.).