As a concept, eRegion denotes Information and Communication Technology (ICT)-supported initiatives that transcend traditional borders and boundaries. A wide variety of eRegion initiatives are increasingly pervasive in global contexts. Some of these initiatives are based on historical artifacts, e.g., the ancient Silk Road and the Amber Road trading routes that have found new life in the age of the Internet. Other eRegion initiatives represent yet more recent synergies amid increased desires for interaction and coordination for mutual benefit. A cross-border region in which the eTechnologies are used extensively is considered the eRegion in which there is a great potential for increased competitiveness and life quality improvement.
The cross-border eLogistics, eProcurement, eGovernment, eMunicipality, eLearning, eTourism, eCulture, eHealth, eSMEs, eSecurity, Silver eEconomy and other eAreas are vital to the competitiveness of the cross-border regions. In Central and South East Europe that means the Danube, the Adriatic & Ionian, and the Alpine regions. From a bigger picture perspective, it is about the competitiveness of the eRegions on the New eAmber and New eSilk Roads.
An important tool supporting the knowledge sharing on the cross-border eRegions relevance, development, and operations is theeRegion Portal. It provides links to e-regions, countries, actors, eRegions Conference, and the Slovenia’s initiative. Links to the organizations in the countries of the region which are relevant to the cross-border eCollaboration are available athttp://eregion.eu/countries. You are welcome to visit the portal occasionally and suggest its possible improvements and provide additional links.
The eRegions Conference 2016 is expected to contribute to the eRegions interoperability. Supportive to its program development is theeRegions on the New eAmber and New eSilk Roads Think Tank.
Supportive to the ideas of the eRegion development were many Business, Government, Municipality and Diplomacy executive meetings and panels organized in the period 2001 to 2010. They were either regular components of the annual Bled eConference, or of the annual students’ eCommerce conference, as well as an extra event. Thanks to their contributions, today we can better understand the importance, urgency, complexity, and multidisciplinarity of, and opportunities in the ICT-supported cross-border neighborhooding in the eRegions.
In Slovenia, the Inter-Municipality Initiative: Cross-border eCollaboration in the Danube eRegion has been under way since February 2011. Major focus of the inter-organizational initiative is to encourage organizations having interest in any aspect of cross-border eBusiness to engage in a joint ICT-based prototype development. A prototype is a proof of concept. It is the beginning of an action leading to a possible joint EU project proposal of an eSolution, or an eService needed to solve a problem shared by the organizations in at least three countries. Prototype development is in a line with the European Network of Living Labs and Open Innovation concept and methodology. The opportunities of the Living labs have been well discussed and echoed in the Slovenia’s initiative Innovation for Life Quality – Slovenia Living Lab created in June 2007.
The eRegion Conference: Cross-border eSolutions & eServices Prototypes Development is an international annual deliverable of the Slovenia’s initiative. It is organized in Ljubljana end of September since 2011. Special component of the conference’s program are the prototype presentations of the cross-border eSolutions and eServices.
Cross-border (macro) region, eRegion, initiative, open innovation, prototype, actor, activity area, action, eRegions interoperability.