Transnational Research Access in Macro-Region

March 2016 -
February 2019


Policy area:
1. Innovation 1.1 R&I infrastructures

Baltic TRAM

The Interreg project BalticTRAM successfully connected companies from the Baltic Sea region with universities, research institutes, and large scale research infrastructures across eight countries and helped 15 SMEs solve specific challenges in product development, e.g. for sustainable cement, better medical test kits, more durable electronics and longer lasting batteries.



Companies need access to high level instruments for product development

Many modern European companies build their business on very specific materials – be it electrolytes for batteries, antibodies coated on plastic in medical test kits or cement containing organic ashes. To develop their products, these companies need all the available knowledge about how these materials are composed and how they behave. They need access to high level measuring devices, which often cost more than a million euros a piece. In particular for small enterprises it would not make sense or even be possible to invest into their own high-tech equipment, such as an atomic force microscope, a gamma spectrometer or an x-ray fluorescence spectrometer.

Research institutions can offer access to their under-used instruments

However, many research institutions all across the Baltic Sea region own such instruments. And the good news is: Many of the instruments are not used for research on an everyday basis – companies could make use of them, if they only knew which instruments to use, where to find them and how to contact their operators. In the project Baltic TRAM, research institutes and universities from six countries around the Baltic Sea joined forces with a number of business support organisations and international associations to address this opportunity.


A network of industrial research centers of eight countries

These partners set up a network of industrial research centers which supported the cooperation of analytical research institutions with industry in eight countries around the Baltic Sea. Primarily, this network facilitated practical product tests run by small and medium enterprises in their own facilities. In addition and targeting political decision makers and public administrations as well as other analytical research infrastructures, the partners presented analyses of the national governance of innovation and smart specialisation in the Baltic Sea region and the Multi-Level Governance of Innovation and Smart Specialisation in the European context. Eleven universities and research institutes continue the network beyond the project lifetime under the coordination of the Foundation of Innovative Initiatives located in Krakow (Poland). Based on the experience gained in BalticTRAM and the predecessor project Science Link, a follow-up project (CAROTS) aims to establish a new type of private or public-private company in the Baltic Sea region: Commercial Analytical Research Organisations (CARO).

Companies connected with science to develop their products

Over three years, the network brought together companies and scientists through three open calls for applications for measurement services which targeted EU-based SMEs. The calls were launched in Germany, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Lithuania, Latvia, Poland and Sweden and their scope was to provide technical and scientific expertise to help solve challenges linked to the development of new products or services. 68 applications were submitted, covering a wide range of industrial sectors, i.e. life science, material science and engineering. The offered services were proved to be very beneficial especially for micro companies that took advantage of the scientific expertise and measurements offered by the network. The results of these pilot activities have been published as seventeen case studies. The University of Turku in Finland continues to host and operate the best-practice database and portal.

Project Stories


€ 4.16
€ 3.20
Eni + Russia
€ 0.00
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Project manager

Deutsches Elektronen Synchrtotron DESY

Uwe Sassenberg

494 089 984 891

Legal representative

Deutsches Elektronen Synchrtotron DESY

Helmut Dosch

494 089 985 022

Financial manager

Deutsches Elektronen Synchrtotron DESY

Tom Minniberger

494 089 985 022

Communication manager

Baltic Development Forum

Viktoria Nilsson

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