1st July 2024, Alicante

CO-VALUE: Needs Assessment Workshop in Alicante

 

The Workshop for Needs Assessment aimed to identify, understand, and prioritise the needs of public authorities, industry, academia, and civil society in involving citizens in research and development processes. 

Over 20 experts representing Alicante’s quadruple helix framework were brought together to identify and share the needs and recommendations of their areas of interest to facilitate citizen participation in R&I. 

The workshop began with introductions by Alicante Councillor Maria del Carmen de España Menárguez, Elisa Díaz, Director of the local development agency, and Esteban Pelayo, CEO of the Alicante Science Park. They presented the agenda, provided an introduction to Alicante’s local context, and outlined the workshop’s objectives. The session started with a roundtable discussion on citizen participation, moderated by Marzia Mazzonetto, coordinator of CO-VALUE and CEO of Stickydot, who introduced CO-VALUE’s vision on citizen participation in R&D. 

Emphasising the importance of involving citizens in research and development processes, Marzia Mazzonetto highlighted that CO-VALUE’s purpose could lead to more impactful and inclusive innovation outcomes. The event continued with insights from citizen engagement expert Angela Simone from Fondazione Giannino Bassetti, who joined online to provide insights on understanding needs. 

Participants then split into four groups (public authorities, industry, academia, and civil society) to identify needs and opportunities for joint valorisation. Facilitators guided discussions, and the groups shared their thoughts in a plenary session. Each group presented its outcomes, fostering a collaborative spirit and practical outcomes. 

The workshop identified recurring needs essential for successful collaboration: effective communication, transparency, setting objectives and measuring impact through KPIs, fostering positive attitudes, increasing involvement, integrating decision-making processes, and taking actionable steps. The event underscored the necessity for ongoing collaboration, institutional reforms, and the creation of common spaces for effective interaction. 

In conclusion, the workshop successfully mapped out the immediate and long-term needs of local entities and reinforced the importance of fostering cooperation and continuous dialogue among key actors. 

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