European Territorial Cooperation

Community Initiative: European Territorial Cooperation Programme Greece-Bulgaria 2007-2013
Year 2012
Project title: Integrated Program for skills enhancement of human resources in fashion sectors and facilitation of employees’ mobility in the cross-border region – SKILLS IN FASHION”
Final Beneficiary: Hellenic Fashion Industry Association


The general objective of the project is the development of a system for improving and certifying the human resources’ quality and facilitating labor force mobilization in the cross-border region through pilot advisory actions and e-learning practices.
The sub-objectives of the project are the following:
  • The establishment of a Greek-Bulgarian cross-border partnership that will: assess and transfer knowledge regarding common methodologies and best practices implemented
  • The establishment of an electronic database/portal/matchmaking tool/info center that can be used as a labor demand and supply matching tool which will be linked with ACTE, EURES, EUROPASS etc.
  • The establishment of a network of Helpdesks regarding human resources issues.
  • The pilot application of innovative actions and practices for skills enhancement, which will be addressed to businesses and employees of the sector in the area.
  • The increase of professional opportunities for the human capital that will make use of the advisory actions.
  • The organization of 2 seminars for adult educators for the identification of needs in skills and qualities and the skills certification system.
  • The facilitation of the sectoral human capital for movement in individual job markets in the cross-border region through the proposed matchmaking procedures (i.e. Career Days, e-partenariat).
  • The promotion of business cross-border cooperation through attracting 3rd countries’ stakeholders (labor force and enterprises).
The partners of the Project are:
  • Hellenic Fashion Industry Association (SEPEE)
  • Association of Young Entrepreneurs and Scientists of Drama
  • Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Xanthi
  • Gnosi Anaptixiaki NGO
  • Business Incubator-Gotse Delchev, Entrepreneurship Promotion Centre
  • Local Economic Development Agency -Razlog
  • American University in Bulgaria





Project title: Small Mediterranean Insular Light Industries Enhancement and Support

Length of Project: 01.05.2009 - 31.03.2012
Acronym: SMILIES

 Project summary

MED islands' main economic activities are Agriculture and Tourism and the related Agro food and Building industries, all of which present a high seasonality. Other existing handicrafts activities and industries are declining. As a result seasonality tends to increase. To compensate that trend economic diversification through the development of new industrial activities, high-tech, knowledge-based, ecology friendly and compatible with the existing economic activities is a viable solution.

A shift to such knowledge-driven industrial activities can upgrade the quality of job opportunities in MED islands. But small insular industries are handicapped for that shift, since they are located at the edge of the European periphery. Their cost of access to strategic expertise, markets, clients or providers, often located in central European marketplaces is high.

Coordinated local action plans supported by the involvement of all local actors and better links to remote strategic (national and global) actors are required. SMILIES proposes to organize such a networking in concrete cases on the field, with focused actions from which sustainable policies and infrastructures supporting industrial innovation will be defined.

The project brings together Local Authorities, Chambers of Commerce, SME Associations, Technical Centers, Training and R&D providers and Universities for developing existing industrial SMEs' and industry start-ups' innovation projects.

The geographic focus is on Crete, the Aegean, Cyprus and Sicily, offering a good variety of sizes and institutional frameworks (State-Island, Region Islands and Groups of Small Islands). SMILIES will identify, for each region, innovative industrial activities reinforcing or exploiting their Tourism Activities, Agrofood and Building Activities for developing Local or Export niche markets.

Based on the partners' expertise and existing local activities and experience, innovation will focus in the use of innovative materials (smart textiles, electronic plastics, ...) to produce innovative products, using innovative processes and to sell them through creative design and marketing, supported by a management efficiently handling globalization and innovation and ICT solutions and the new networking possibilities they offer.

Pilots reinforcing local cooperation and synergies and bringing locally unavailable expertise closer, markets, providers and clients will support Small Industry projects in line with the identified activities through consulting, mentoring and training interventions making extended use of ICT whenever required. By sharing experience out of these pilots, industrial policies adapted to the MED islands context will be defined, actors involved will be networked and sustainable support infrastructures allowing to share resources required for their implementation will be set up.

Supporting Tools

Networking Guide

Financing tools in Greece and Cyprus

Pilot Support from Research Institutes



20 Karaoli - Dimitriou St, Kalamaria 55131, Thessaloniki Greece
Tel./Fax: +302310410121 Εmail: [email protected]