The CREATOR mini-program has been made possible by the INTERREG IVC and Co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund. The Interregional Cooperation Programme INTERREG IVC, financed by the European Union’s Regional Development Fund, helps Regions of Europe work together to share experience and good practice in the areas of innovation, the knowledge economy, the environment and risk prevention. EUR 302 million is available for project funding but, more than that, a wealth of knowledge and potential solutions are also on hand for regional policy-makers.

What is CREATOR?

CREATOR is an INTERREG IVC cooperative mini-programme where seven European regions come together to share experience and knowledge concerning the ageing population in Europe.

Why?

Few could argue against the fact that the European Union is undergoing a demographic change. The regions active in the CREATOR mini-programme have seen this coming challenge and chosen a proactive approach and begun working toward preparing for an indisputable change in demography.

How?

CREATOR has soon been a four-year joint effort by seven European regions which all experience the demographic change specifically that their populations are growing older. By identifying good practices in the field of active ageing, health care, products for the elderly and volunteer services among other things in each of the participating regions, we have together found solutions for regional demographic difficulties. These good practices have then been paired with trends in the field of demographic change and ageing. The goal of CREATOR has been to identify and/or create creative regional policies addressing economic development opportunities related to ageing societies. Meaning that CREATOR has tried to find ways in which one can take advantage of the new population structure in order to create regional economic growth. This has been done in two separate ways, directly by market research and new products and services as well as indirectly by keeping the ever ageing population healthy.

Our focus has been to maintain and/or further enhance the competitiveness of the regional economies and ensuring the regions long-term social cohesion, mainly through exploring the specific challenges coming from an ageing of the regional populations and additionally through pro-actively addressing economic development opportunities that emerge from new needs of an increasingly ageing population. In relation to our goal, two sub-objectives have been pursued through exchange of experience and joint work:

1. To further adapt and diversify the care and well- being sector to meet the needs of the ageing population.

2. To encourage SMEs working with innovation and technology to develop products or services which meet the needs of an ageing population.

Then what?

All of our work will come together and result in  a political manifesto and technical a sourcebook. In these two documents we have looked at trends identified in an independent study, the good practices identified in each region and from this created seven political recommendations, all presented with specific measures connected to them. The political manifesto and the sourcebook will be ready in the autumn on 2013.