In June, we kicked off the 100% online Global Cluster Leadership Program. The program is designed for cluster leaders, cluster managers, cluster staff and people that want to develop the next generation of clusters in their countries.
With more than 150 sign ups from all over the world, the program is already off to a great start, connecting emerging clusters, growth clusters and national cluster policymakers in the same cluster program.
Yesterday, we hosted the first of our monthly digital workshops where we brought together more than 30 cluster leaders from across the globe. We had representatives from Barbados, UK, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Slovenia, Ukraine, Australia, Mexico, Norway and Denmark, all connecting to collaborate and share ideas.
Top Three Cluster Challenges
A screenshot of what we worked on during the first Cluster Leadership Program Digital Workshop
One of the big topics of the digital workshop was zooming in on the long-term challenges for clusters. Three things stood out.
The number one challenge most clusters faced in the discussion was funding. Key questions explored were what is the right funding model and what is right business model for a cluster? This was a big issue and a big discussion in the workshop.
Second, and very closely affiliated, is what is the value proposition? What is the value impact that we can create as clusters? Interestingly, this connects straight back to the tool called the Cluster Value Impact Roadmap.
The Cluster Value Impact Roadmap is a tool developed specifically to help clusters design and develop a more impact-driven strategy. Learn how to use it in the Global Cluster Leadership Program
The third challenge that was brought up was how do I grow? How do we grow our membership? How do we grow our cluster, which really requires trust, collaboration and relevant impact for our members.
So those three key challenges were brought up – business model and financing, value proposition and impact, and membership and growth.
Different Clusters Share the Same Challenges
A key point that was also highlighted in the discussion was what is your starting point? What is your cluster starting point? This is something that we addressed with the tool, Cluster Starting Point Canvas.
It was very fascinating listening to the range of participants. Some were just starting out – in the case of Barbados – they were basically building the national cluster program from scratch, starting with basic ecosystem engagement and basic cluster development around clean energy in particular, while other clusters had been around for many, many years and were now looking to reinvent and change their clusters. This idea of a cluster starting point really helped us put into categories where different participants are at the different stages.
Participating in today’s program were cluster leaders from clean energy clusters, finance clusters, biosciences clusters, food and agriculture clusters, tourism, robotics. A broad range. What was notable were the challenges they all identified and shared, despite being clusters from completely different industries.
Join Us for the Next Digital Gathering of Cluster Leaders
As part of the Global Cluster Leadership Program, we’ll be hosting this digital workshop at the beginning of every month going forward. We look forward to the beginning of August, where we will be hosting, again, a large number of global cluster leaders coming together to discuss challenges, solutions, brainstorming on new ideas that they can implement. We hope this will help build a global community of change leaders and changemakers that want to push the agenda and change how clusters work on strategy, business model, and long term cluster leadership development.
Clusters matter to transformation of industries, clusters matter to transformation of countries. And it’s upon us to develop the class leadership of tomorrow.
Learn more in the Strategy Tools Global Cluster Leadership Program.
Strategy & transformation advisor to companies, innovation clusters, ecosystems and governments around the world.