Attract and retain foreign students researchers and professionals presenting them with local enterprises’ opportunities and city’s ecosystem
Reggio Emilia is investing in internationalization & attraction potential and is working on R&I as
levers for competitiveness in smart, inclusive & sustainable society. It has a strong manufacturing
core, while relying on its distinctive competences (education, mechatronic, agrifood, green
building), offering wide chances for students and businesses in these main fields. With a high level
of employment, a positive economic index, a wide number of SMEs and big companies,
businesses are in need of finding innovative and higher skills and profiles. The University
(UNIMORE) has an increasing number of new students every year, including foreign students,
offer a wide range of courses & collaborations with foreign Universities. RE’s research centers
(Loris Malaguzzi International Center for early childhood education) and CRPA have well
established relations worldwide, which are further developed by the E35 Foundation for
Different poles need to get in touch to make businesses aware of possibilities offered by presence
of foreign skills.
Challenge focuses on the development of an innovative system to facilitate relations between
local productive and research ecosystem and foreign students, researchers, professionals
interested in studying and researching, to stimulate innovation in enterprises and to attract talents.
Exploiting presence of foreign students/professionals/researchers (Erasmus, Marie Curie,
Students coming from partner Universities/ or located in Countries that have relationships at
institutional level international businesses, ecc), and increasing number, will benefit local
economy, attract new businesses, enrich the ecosystem & quality of life in the City. Challenge is
related to willingness to increase competitiveness of ecosystem focusing on the attraction of
talents, to give new answers to enterprises about skills and internationalization needs, being
student potential actors of change and antennas in their own countries.
The challenge is located in the City of Reggio Emilia and its surroundings with a number of 57.000
enterprises (1 per 9 inhabitants) and an unemployment rate at 4,9%. Main target groups are: local
enterprises in need of higher qualified and innovative profiles, of innovation and research inputs.
2) foreign students and researchers that may provide added value in terms of innovative skills and
link to opportunities, knowledge, relationships in third countries.
UNIMORE, network University with seats in Reggio and Modena, has enrolled in 2018 485 foreign
students for graduate studies and 839 for post graduate. It has more then 300 collaboration
agreements with foreign Universities. The City thanks to its international relationships, has
contacts with foreign Universities. Research centers have relationships with wide international
networks. This initiative relates to the main strategies of the Municipality working to enhance
research and innovation policies and attractiveness of the city.
The Municipality has a strong internationalization propensity, a long term strategy on attraction of
investments and talents linked to knowledge (Innovation Park) and projects for SMEs’
competitiveness through internationalization as Compete In (Interreg Europe) The Economic
Development and internationalization Unit, through its relations with local stakeholders and the
working tables already established, is working on the development of distinctive competencies and
on the cooperation between research, education, enterprises, internationalization. The whole
ecosystem with its different stakeholders, beside an export rate of 60%, has a vocation for
internationalization (research centers, business associations, Reggio Children, E35 Foundation for
international projects). The challenge will cover the territory of the province of Reggio Emilia,
involving its enterprises, its research Centers, the University, the Innovation Park, intermediate
bodies, cooperatives, social enterprises.
Solution should regard both technological aspects/processes to realize and put into use shared
and easy matching system between enterprises and foreign skills. The process should envisage
how to involve enterprises/research centers and foreign skills (events, company visits, open
days).Others similar projects have often failed due to lack of proper definition of processes.
Solution should enable exchange of foreign skills and companies. The aim is not only to achieve
short-term goals (study experiences) but also to create long-term business and research
opportunities (both locally and in the country of origin). Solution should facilitate integration in
ecosystem providing knowledge about cultural, social aspects, in order to foster contamination
between foreigners and local community.
As a challenge owner, the Municipality has organizational resources, relationships opportunities,
working tables, that can be used to implement the solution through:
* Information, data and expertise on the issue
* Facilitate relationships and partnerships with other local stakeholders such us University,
enterprises, research centres
* Connections to potential partners/investors
* Access to its own distribution channels or supply chain
* Facilitate relationships and partnerships with other twinning cities and international partner
of the Municipality at international level
* Endorsement, communication and promotion.
The Municipality has strong relationships with the start up system of the City and research