The Development Agency of Republika Srpska (RARS) was established in 2004 in accordance with the Law on the Development of Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises. Their most important task is to support the establishment, growth and development of business entities. RARS is the initiator and implementer of the development policies of the Government of Republika Srpska in support of the private sector, attracting and supporting the implementation of investment projects, as well as a place of contact and sustainable dialogue between the public and private sector.
The Chamber of Commerce – The Chamber is a non-governmental, independent, professional business organisation, a non-for-profit public and legal association of business entities and economic associations from the territory of Republika Srpska. The activities of the Chamber of Commerce of Republika Srpska are primarily focused on representing the interests of members and the economy as a whole before the legislative and executive authorities, as well as on connecting entrepreneurs in RS and the rest of Bosnia and Herzegovina and development of economic relations between the economy of RS and the economies of other countries, professional trainings and the provision of all necessary information and advisory services to its members.
The Faculty of Electrical Engineering in Banja Luka – The Faculty of Electrical Engineering in Banja Luka resulted from the Department of Electrical Engineering of the Technical Faculty in Banja Luka, founded in 1962. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, the growing need for engineers led to the establishment of the Department of Electrical Engineering as a separate faculty. From its foundation until today, the number of enrolled students varied between 120 and 550, while over 2000 students graduated from the institution. The study process is led by more than 40 full-time professors and assistants of the University of Banja Luka, along with many professors from the Faculty of Electrical Engineering in East Sarajevo, the Faculty of Electrical Engineering in Belgrade, the Faculty of Technical Sciences in Novi Sad, the Faculty of Electronic Engineering in Niš, the Faculty of Computer and Information Science in Ljubljana, the University of Paderborn, Mälardalen University, and many other faculties and universities.
EDA – the Development Agency – Over the past 20 years, EDA has been working on the provision and application of knowledge necessary for the development of enterprises and local communities in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Western Balkans. We are focused on management transformation – from reactive, to creative.
Mission: EDA facilitates management transformation in the Balkans.
EDA is active in three areas:
- Development of sustainable policies and effective institutions in a complex context – EDA as a think tank.
- Transformation of SME operations towards increased added value – EDA as a workshop.
- Transition of public administration to good governance – EDA as a guide.
EDA is one of few organisations whose operations successfully combine a research approach in order to understand the context and nature of problems well and development support that focuses on finding practical, feasible and creative solutions.
Innovation centre Banja Luka
ICBL supports entrepreneurship and job creation through improvement of products and services based on knowledge and application of innovative and advanced technologies. The key strength of ICBL is the creation of new jobs through entrepreneurship, direct support to start-ups and SMEs through a business incubator. ICBL has developed programmes that combine education and mentorship and are focused on capacity building of young people for self-employment and generation of new jobs.
Over the past period, ICBL has achieved the following key results: 175 teams were supported during the pre-incubation phase by providing support in the development of a business model, market research, business planning; 116 companies were supported during the incubation phase by providing support in business planning, technical consulting, partner matching, investor matching, internationalisation etc. The supported companies have employed over 328 persons; 200 trainings and conferences were organised with more than 34,500 attendees; 10 cycles of an internship programme were organised with 550 involved students (over 88,000 hours of practice in the private business sector).
Improving the competitiveness of SMEs from the region in global value chains (mostly related to the EU markets) by applying digital innovations and helping SMEs from the ICT sector to explore and exploit the emerging digitalisation market in the country.
IDEMO to be recognised as a key driver for digital transformation of SMEs and facilitator of the continuously evolving regional innovation ecosystem in RS, and be well integrated into WB and EU DIH network.
Export-oriented manufacturing sectors (metal processing and wood processing)
- SMEs in global value chains (metal processing and wood processing)
- SMEs in the ICT sector
- Start-ups and spin-offs for digital innovations
- Policy makers from entity and local levels
The local innovation system is characterised by weak digital innovation orientation of exporting industry SMEs and a lack of their interactions with IT companies as service providers and supporting institutions at meso level. Cooperation between meso organisations is ad hoc and project-based. Systemic policies and instruments to support digital innovations are identified in the SME strategy and innovation plan but still not developed. The exporting industry of BiH economy will come under pressure as a result of the EU market requirements for digitalisation. Recent surveys show that companies have considerable potential to increase their international competitiveness by using new digital solutions. DIH IDEMO will facilitate the emerging of a digitalisation market in the region by providing necessary services, introducing innovative business models and developing system policy and instruments.
Key challenges: development of new services, new patterns of cooperation and facilitation of the emerging market for digitalisation.
DIH IDEMO intends to gather all key elements and stakeholders for the creation of a digital innovation eco system. The selected target group will be the wood and metal processing sector with ICT as the main service supporting sector. The wood and metal processing sector have a large share in the industry of Bosnia and Herzegovina (data: information and communication technology; a study entitled Fuel for SME Competitiveness for BH wood/metal processing sectors hire 6600/16300 workers with 509 mil. /1.8 billions KM of revenue). On the other hand, an ICT sector analysis shows potential of 7212 workers and 998 million of revenue (published by the Ministry of Science and Technology Development, Higher Education and Information Society). The targeted project area includes Banja Luka, Prijedor and Doboj, since the vast majority of the companies and supporting organisations are located in these cities. The findings of the study “Fuel for SME Competitiveness” clearly show that ICT is used in BH enterprises mostly for communication 83% (including banking, advertising and sales with share of over 50%). The study clearly shows problems and obstacles in the environment that eco system stakeholders facing are a) Low demand from SME sector for digitalisation/ICT solutions, b) Lack of affordable ICT solutions for SMEs, since the ICT sector is mostly focused on foreign markets, c) Insufficient supporting instruments for digitalisation and d) Missing interaction between producers, the ICT sector and supporting organisations. DIH IDEMO as a project aims to create a stimulating environment for SMEs in the wood processing, metal processing sector and ICT as a supporting industry. By offering new services, business models and policy instruments, the project will create a business environment for the technological transformation of targeted SMEs.
DIH IDEMO will drive the digital transformation and create a stimulating environment for targeted groups to set up a regional perspective of collaboration, research and innovative projects with EU partners by using the European DIH network.