Innovation and knowledge in SMEs (DK)

Project partners 
Entrepreneurs and SMEs in Vejen Municipality

Contact data
Else Mejer
tel. + 45 30 112 177
e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Key words Triple helix/inclusive growth, incentivizing young talent, competitive advantages, economic sustainability, sharing knowledge, passion in innovation

Main problems to be solved (analysis)

Innovation is broadly defined by being a new product, new process, new organization or new marketing, although the relatively broad definition still only results in that 41% of companies in the Southern Region has implemented a process of innovation. The need for companies themselves to create or find knowledge and new technologies is greater than ever, if they should ultimately survive the international competition, where many studies have confirmed that investment in knowledge provides a significant contribution to productivity and growth.

One of the great challenges for Vejen Municipality and the region as a hole, are the lacking human resources. There are relatively fewer people with a longer education and relatively more people without any qualifying and business related education. Irrespective of whether it is employed, unemployed or people outside the workforce Region South Denmark is laying low in the statistic. Some of the explanation can be the overrepresentation of branches there employs persons with a relatively lower educational level but that can only explain part of the relatively lower educational level (Region Syddanmark, Vækstredegørelse 2009).

What is of most importance is the lack of both a high educational level and companies participating in development project. This combination gives great opportunities, but emphases also the great challenges for competitiveness in Vejen Municipality.

Policy frameworks to be dealt with/fitting in

Aim of the project 
The primary focus is to raise the level of knowledge in the local companies in order to create value through innovation and in attracting more highly skilled employees for companies. An important element in this is to help the companies through the process, both the recognition process and the practical management of the national subsidy schemes.

(Expected) Results

  • Identifying the needs and ambitions for growth through new knowledge by visits of a business consultant
  • Better connectionbetween companies and knowledge people
  • Strengthenedcooperation between companies and knowledge institutions
  • Eventwith a focus on opportunities for subsidy in hiring academics

(Expected) outcome within the WP

  • SMEs improve their knowledge level and competitiveness by hiring academics – we will help them through the process.
  • Stronger cooperation with educational institutions and national agencies

Planning 2012

Costs 30.000 euro

Financing Vital Rural Area and Vejen Municiapality

Implementation of the project (cf. CAA) which stakeholders were involved?

  • Danish Agency for Science Technology and Innovation
  • TEK Momentum (University of South Denmark)
  • KarriereCentret (University of South Denmark)
  • Ballisager
  • JobCentret

What process did you run through to fit the project into local conditions?
- Individual contacts to stakeholders, companies and academics


1 Which successes were achieved so far in the pilot project? 

2 What are the expected boundary conditions for the project to be implemented? 

  • It is time consuming
  • The business consultant needs to have some basic information regarding the different subsidy schemes and knowledge of relevant partners

3 Which related projects can be studied or consulted (other innovative best practice examples) before starting to think on implementation? 

4 What is the applicability / transferability of the project? 

  • There is quite good possibilities of transferability and in WP 1 we are already having different deliberation, for example in the sharing of knowledge with Norfolk and NOFA, there also have a focus on information workers and work experience for the students.

5 Which tools does the project bring in to alleviate / help starting up implementation elsewhere? 

UdviklingVejenvisiting in their daily work companies in the Municipality in which the individual companies' competences, challenges and development potentials are identified.

UdviklingVejen has at the initial meeting, among other things focus on the opportunities and the companies fitness to make use of the different contributions supporting increased knowledge in the companies.

A large part of the process is to help companies to a greater recognition of the value by the addition of new knowledge and their ability to innovate and grow through recruitment of highly skilled employees. The companies identified as being suitable, will then be visited again, where UdviklingVejen will make use of a number of partners, for example, FORCE and TEK Momentum.

The process is accompanied by the possibility to usethe various kind of contribution, for example a knowledge-pilot, a student or an innovation check where UdviklingVejen facilitate and follow up the process.

6 Sustainability
This effort is of great importance for the Vejen Municipality, why we forward will focus on and allocate resources to continue to work with increased knowledge in companies.

b) what are the benefits of the project seen from the Profit, Planet, and People side?

  • The companies will experience better innovation capacity and competiveness
  • Fewer unemployed graduates 

Date of production of this project format, - latest version 19.4.2013