Northern Connections

Reflections on Northern Connections

21 September 2018 - Published by Anne Katrine Arentsen
By Leon Aahave Uhd, Chief Project Manager, CLEAN Cluster in Denmark

When a partnership of 22 cities, clusters and regional actors sets out to commit themselves and each other to go on a 4-year journey together nobody knows exactly, where it will lead to. It is a leap of faith based on trust in the other partners and a wish for pushing towards a common goal. We have created an action plan and then set out to make it all happen. We are half way through the project now - and it is time for reflection and status.

We set out to improve the way we work together across regional and national borders – to unlock the potential for transnational collaboration. We thought that by involving the policy, city and cluster level actors, we could create a common approach on how to work together, how to make our decision makers work together and (most importantly) how to enable our SMEs to work together. I think we are making progress on the first two and now comes the final test – how to unlock the potential for our SMEs. The first Living Lab events are ready, are we?

On November 7th the first event will take place in Esbjerg, Denmark. The Living Lab and CLEAN have defined 3 challenges that are paramount to address, if Syd Energi (SE) will be able to maintain their position as a frontrunner on the digitalisation of the energy grid of tomorrow. The challenges are situated around sensor technology, smart home technologies and more green behaviour. You can read more about the challenges HERE – and view the invitation HERE

We are also looking forward to welcoming you in Oslo – at our second Living Lab Event at Ørkernbyen. This Living Lab event will take place at Økern Centre, which is situated in the heart of Hovinbyen in Norway. For this, we are looking for innovative companies, ideas or technologies in order to identify and form new partnerships. Therefore, we are looking for solutions within sustainable energy solutions, zero-emission transport of goods, smart buildings and waste management. Read more about the challenges HERE


Now it is the time to show what we got in the Northern Connections. This is a time for showing that our networks locally and regionally can work internationally. If you know a company that is excellent within one or more of the challenges described, you should contact them directly and tell about the opportunity to come to Denmark. The essence and strength of the Northern Connections project are, in my opinion, that we have developed and nourished the speed of trust between us, the partners, to a point where we know that we will not let each other down.


We look forward to welcoming you to Denmark and Oslo to show the power of the Northern Connections.