RODIH is the representative association of Romanian DIHs, which acts as a catalyst for innovation, but also a platform for the agenda of common policies among regional DIHs in the country in relation to local, regional, national and European public bodies.
Digital Innovation Hubs are non-profit ecosystems that can be orchestrated by various types of organizations and that aim to provide services to companies, industries, start-ups, institutions and public administration.
The importance of digitalisation and the adoption of digital transformation and innovation solutions have been among the main topics discussed recently in Europe. The opportunities created by the use of new digital technologies have been seen especially in recent times, when we have had to adapt to different conditions and rely on digital tools of various kinds in order to continue our work. However, the data for Romania are worrying. The latest DESI report shows that we are among the countries with poor performance in integrating digital technologies into the national economy. Romania ranks 26th out of 28 in the EU in terms of digitization. At the same time, Romania ranks 27th among EU countries in terms of the integration of digital technology by companies. At the same time, EU SMEs do not seem to take full advantage of digitalisation.
Digital Innovation Hubs coagulate and orchestrate the innovation and digital transformation resources of partners in the region, propose strategies to integrate these capabilities and capabilities and actively contribute through its activities to the transfer of knowledge and technologies to final beneficiaries.
They act as a single regional point of contact and strengthen the innovation ecosystem. They are designed to support industry in Europe to take the necessary steps to transform digitally and to be prepared to face the competition of the new digital economy. DIHs also provide innovation services, access to various funding programs, skills training and development needed to develop and adopt digital technologies. The Digital Innovation HUBs are aligned with the European Commission's strategies and programmatic documents, such as the New Strategy for Industry, the Green Deal and Digital Europe.
The Digital Innovation Hubs that will be funded by the new Digital Europe program (2021-2027) will receive the status of European Digital Innovation Hubs (EDIHs). Digital innovation centers will play a key role in the European Multiannual Financial Framework for 2021-2027 (Horizon Europe 2021-2027), being the central pillar for the implementation of the Digital Europe program.
They will help ensure the widespread use and accessibility of advanced digital technologies in the economy and society by businesses and the public sector.
The European Council approved, in December 2020, a total budget of 7.5 billion euros of the Digital Europe Program, Romania being allocated the amount of approx. 38.55 million euros for the entire implementation period of the program, respectively 7 years. With a budget of approx. 5.5 million euros, per year Romania can select a minimum number of 5 Digital Innovation Centers and a maximum number of 10.
The European Network of Digital Innovation Hubs will provide the widest geographical coverage in all of Europe, comprising over 200 such DIHs.