Rene Tõnnisson, member of the board of the Institute of Baltic Studies, was appointed as one of the 20 experts of the European Cluster Policy Group. The scope and objective of the group is to share intelligence about cluster policies in view to further explore how to better assist Member States in supporting the emergence of world-class clusters in the European Union.

The European Cluster Policy Group will start its work in April 2009 with an 18-month term. The Group consists of high level policy makers, businesses and research and higher education institutions.

The tasks of the Group are:

– to improve the European Commission’s and the Member States’ understanding of modern policy responses in support of cluster excellence;
– to identify and further analyse successful and unsuccessful practices in support of clusters, and make recommendations on how to better design cluster policies in the Community;
– to assess international trends in cluster development and identify future challenges for cluster policies in response to globalisation;
– to explore tools for removing existing barriers to trans-national cluster cooperation;
– to analyse complementarities among the main policies and financial instruments at Community level that support clusters, draw conclusions and recommendations;
– to liaise with the European Cluster Alliance and where appropriate with other initiatives in support of clusters and cluster policies, and draw from their practical experiences;
– to conduct up to a maximum of three exploratory study visits within the term of the members, with a view to learning from international experience;
– to collaborate with a view to communicating the discussion and common findings to the public;
– to provide the Commission with a mid-term report nine months after its launch and a final report at the end of its full period summarising progress on the tasks and recommendations. The final report should be made publicly available.