Développement économique et création locale d’emplois (LEED)

OECD EURADA Winter School for Regional Development Agencies


 16, 23 Jan & 26-29 Feb 2024Online & Utrecht, The Netherlands | 2nd edition

Organised by the OECD Trento Centre for Local Development in collaboration with the European Association of Development Agencies (EURADA) 

The project 

The Winter School provides capacity building for managers and professionals working for Development Agencies. The aim is to:

  • Raise awareness of global megatrends and trends and their potential impact on local development.
  • Define common analytical and policy tools for resilience, sustainability and economic development analysis.
  • Develop expertise in implementing effective regional and local development strategies and policy frameworks for competitiveness and sustainability.
  • Stimulate the exchange of knowledge and experience among participants (peer-exchange)-.
  • Promote networking and debate on relevant case studies and good practices from regions, OECD and European Commission.

2024 Focus: Navigating the future of regional development -  Driving the change and enabling green and digital transitions for sustainable regional development

The theme of the 2024 Winter School was Strategic Foresight and Interaction. The Winter School lasted  three days and provided local regional development experts, development agency staff, national and regional policy makers, with knowledge about practices, experiences, trends and challenges in regional development and innovation.


During the Winter School participants are able to take part in interactive sessions on the topics of strategic foresight, Strategic Autonomy, green and digital transition. Taking into account the missions and core activities of RDAs, namely innovation support, investment and internationalisation, as well as the specificities of different innovation ecosystems, the participants explore the future opportunities and challenges that lie ahead for RDAs. 

RELATED INITIATIVE: Cultivating forward-thinking and future literacy in Regional Development Agencies

The initiative was divided into two parts: an online segment with two online workshops and an in-person capacity building meeting at 2024 Winter School for Regional Development Agencies. 

Participants learned about foresight, its application and methods. They also gained a better understanding of how to imagine multiple future scenarios, taking into account different variables, trends and uncertainties that may affect their regions. A significant amount of time was devoted to foresight exercises on the topic of ‘Futures of Regional Development Agencies in 2050’, which allowed participants to try out specific framing, scanning and visioning techniques.. 

Online Workshops

Dates: 16 and 23 January 2024 from 14:00 to 16:30 CET 

Workshop 1: Introduction to strategic foresight for regional development

  • Defining strategic foresight for RDAs

  • Foresight in practice
  • Concepts and terminology
  • Framework and competencies
  • Foresight exercise:
    • Environmental scanning (STEEP)
    • Three Horizons: Horizon 1
Workshop 2: Drivers of change and foresight methods
  • Check-in and recap of Workshop 1
  • Presentation of Foresight4Europe by Michal Pazour, Technology Centre Prague
  • Summary of trends and drivers of change (based on STEEP analysis)
  • Foresight exercise cont. Three Horizons:
    • Future visioning (H3). Visions, aspirations and narratives about the future
    • Navigating the change and transition (H2).

Onsite Workshop: a session at the 2024 OECD EURADA Winter School for Regional Development Agencies

Date: 27 February 2024 | Location: Utrecht, The Netherlands

Workshop 3: Navigating the futures

  • Foresight terminology and practice
  • Ice-breaker excercise (Mentimeter)
  •  Reporting from two online workshops on Futures literacy and foresight for RDAs
  • Foresight exercise – Backcasting
  • Final reflections


Material & information

Agenda & Proceedings

Winter School Agenda




Participants profile

The programme of the Winter School is aimed at officials from national and regional Development Agencies and/or students or other professionals interested and active in socio economic development. Participants should be strongly committed to local development, innovation and/or the development and implementation of EU R&I and/or Cohesion policies.

How to apply

Registration for the online workshops was separate from the registration for the Winter School. Please note that non-EURADA members who attended both online workshops were entitled to a reduced fee for the Winter School. 

Winter School

Candidates for the Winter School needed to submit a duly compiled application.

Candidates could propose a topic for a pitch on one of the themes of the Winter School.

Priority was given to EURADA members. If the number of applications exceedsed the number of places available, the participants were selected on the basis of professional level and work experience.

Online workshops

Attendance via registration. Places were limited.

Fee, logistics and costs

There was a participation fee for the Winter School. The organisers covered transport, lunches, and dinner during the Winter School, whereas travel to Utrecht and accommodation costs will be borne by the participants.
- EURADA Members: €350
- Non-EURADA members: €450
- Non-EURADA members but participants of online workshops: €350

The two online workshops were free of charge. 


Working language



OECD Trento Centre  








Previous edition

1st edition | 28 February - 2 March 2023, Trento, Italy

2023 OECD EURADA winter school group visiting Trentino Sviluppo 

2023 Focus: Smart Specialisation for competitiveness, sustainability and resilient local development

Smart Specialisation strategies if well designed, implemented and monitored, can help build resilience at local level, address societal challenges and contribute to the achievement of sustainability goals. The three main themes of the Winter School were the following:

  • DAY 1. Innovation ecosystem in Trentino: entrepreneurship, start-ups and SME scaling ups.
  • DAY 2. Smart Specialisation in practice: sharing experience on implementation of S3 strategies and discussion on challenge-led innovation, green transition, resilience and skills.
  • DAY 3. Instruments and policies to boost local competitiveness: examples of teleworking in Trentino and skills for green and sustainable local economy.

The Winter School combined presentations with hands-on and practice oriented approach, which helped participants to comprehend better the challenges and opportunities for local development. Substantial time during each day was reserved for field visits, case pitches and peer-learning to promote exchange of practices. The Winter School included interactive presentation sessions, discussions, group exercises and field visits in Trentino, Italy (onsite). The Winter School allowed participants to get a better understanding of local development challenges, meet and learn from their peers, as well as network and establish new working relationships.

Course outline & Agenda 


Previous OECD related work 

Webinar | 28 June 2021


The Internationalisation of Smart Specialisation Strategies

The OECD Trento Centre for Local Development and the Autonomous Region of Friuli Venezia Giulia in Italy, developed a project on local development and internationalisation of the innovation system in Friuli Venezia Giulia. The project devotes specific attention to the regional S3 and its future evolution, in view of the 2021-2027 EU programming cycle.

This international webinar focused on the opportunities and challenges posed by S3 internationalisation. Building on the Friuli Venezia Giulia case study, the webinar offered an opportunity to compare national, regional and international methodologies, practices and experiences.


Report | 30 November 2021

Internationalisation of the next Smart Specialisation Strategy
Opportunities and barriers in the Friuli Venezia Giulia region


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