This week ‘a creative momentum project’ is joining the 30+ other projects co-funded through the Northern Periphery & Arctic (NPA) programme at their annual event. It is the West of Ireland’s turn to host the annual event this year and it’s taking place at the Marine Institute in Galway.
Surrounded by the stunning scenery of Ireland’s Wild Atlantic coastline, Wednesday saw participants who’d travelled from Norway, Finland, Scotland, Iceland, Sweden and Northern Ireland, join with their Irish colleagues at the annual Lead Partner Seminar. This yearly seminar discusses practical project implementation issues for the 30+ ongoing NPA co-funded projects.
This year the focus was communication and how these transnational projects can clearly explain their activities and benefits to the people who are the end users of the project and the general public. As part of this, all projects set up a display area in the lobby of the Marine Institute which showed the huge range of topics being addressed by the projects including development of renewable energy businesses, slow adventure tourism, smart fish labelling, eHealth, marine waste, aging, natural heritage and of course the creative industries sector.
Today (Thursday) the NPA Annual Conference ‘Blue Opportunities: The Marine Economy in the NPA’ will be opened by Minister for Agriculture, Food & the Marine, Michael Creed TD. The conference will focus on Blue Growth and topics such as entrepreneurship and innovation related to fisheries and aquaculture, environmental protection and maritime and coastal tourism.
And as we saw at the highly successful SeaFest event earlier this summer, there can be very close ties between the creative sector and the marine: from creative recycling of marine-related materials (LX-upcycle) to design inspiration (Martina Hamilton Jewellery Design) and artistic expression (Bernie Dignam Artist).
And it’s very appropriate that the NPA Annual Conference takes place today – European Cooperation Day #ECDay2017. Today is a day to celebrate the achievements of territorial cooperation. There are hundreds of local events taking place, organised by territorial cooperation programmes, including the Northern Periphery & Arctic programme, and projects in over 30 countries.