Territorialised thematic aggregates

In his capac­i­ty as Deputy Direc­tor of UTC, Prof. Olivi­er Gapenne is behind a large-scale project known as “Ter­ri­to­ri­al­ized The­mat­ic Aggre­gates. There are sev­en such (ATTs) in the Oise Met­ro­pol­i­tan Pole (PMO). Our Inter­ac­tions jour­nal­ists inter­viewed him. 

Can you explain for our readers what the expression “Territorialized Thematic Aggregates” (ATT) covers ?

We often use the exam­ple of the Sil­i­con Val­ley in Cal­i­for­nia, cre­at­ed a lit­tle more than 60 years ago.What this means is that all projects must be “long-term”. As we see it, we wish to move away from the con­cept Sci­ence for Soci­ety — where­by sci­en­tif­ic actors become increas­ing aware of soci­etal and eco­nom­ic prob­lem areas in situ — to that of Sci­ence with Soci­ety, which implies get­ting con­crete­ly involved in com­plex col­lec­tive col­lab­o­ra­tion. Hence this idea of the ATTs — which was includ­ed in the UTC strate­gic plan in 2017 when Prof Philippe COURTIER was appoint­ed Direc­tor of UTC.The under­ly­ing dynam­ics has ter­ri­to­r­i­al inno­va­tion at its cen­tre, the area here being the PMO which includes the urban areas of Beau­vais, Com­piègne and Creil, var­i­ous busi­ness enter­pris­es and research estab­lish­ments — those, for exam­ple, at UTC or at the Insti­tut Uni­LaSalle, par exam­ple. Obvi­ous­ly, the ATTs are not at all ‘closed shops’ for the ter­ri­to­ry in ques­tion. The key point is that it gen­er­ates and fos­ters inno­va­tion in the ter­ri­to­ry albeit occa­sion­al­ly rely­ing on exter­nal resources for the local actors, their com­pet­i­tiv­i­ty, local wealth cre­ation, employ­ment and ter­ri­to­r­i­al attractiveness. 

What are the main stakes and issues related to development of aggregates for the PMO?

Let me give just two exam­ple to illus­trate. The objec­tive is to stim­u­late inno­va­tion and to accom­pa­ny indus­tri­al muta­tions in this ter­ri­to­ry. ATTs can­not exist with­out a pos­i­tive entre­pre­neur­ial con­text (pri­ma­ry ben­e­fi­cia­ries) nor in absence of polit­i­cal will dis­played by the ter­ri­to­r­i­al author­i­ties. The main objec­tives of UTC are to train engi­neers, and to engage in the devel­op­ment of research and devel­op­ment. It is via inno­va­tion that this mis­sion can be offered to help to improve the lev­el of com­pet­i­tive­ness of all region­al actors, which is a cost­ly, com­plex process and nec­es­sar­i­ly col­lec­tive in essence. Hence the deci­sion made by UTC to car­ry out an aggre­gate type exper­i­ment in our ter­ri­to­ry, for the ben­e­fit of the enter­pris­es and with the enter­pris­es and like­wise with the local author­i­ties and var­i­ous research and inno­va­tion sites (R&I)

What are the seven aggregates today?

The ” ” sev­en ” refers to sev­en pri­or­i­ty themes: ‘nat­u­ral­i­ty’, resilience, future indus­try (4.0), health, aero­nau­tics, ener­gy and bio-sourced prod­ucts and water. Each aggre­gate is devel­oped in a spe­cif­ic and sin­gu­lar man­ner depend­ing on which actors are involved, on the his­to­ry of the theme, its tech­no­log­i­cal matu­ri­ty, the den­si­ty of indus­tri­al actors in the field, on soci­etal urgency, etc. The work pro­duced with­in each aggre­gate rep­re­sents a pre­cious form of ‘raw mate­r­i­al’ and is used to beef up ten­ders to call for projects, which is a direct gain! Our objec­tive is to see each aggre­gate, with a con­crete project ready by end 2019 for deploy­ment in order to prime the “project pumps” of the var­i­ous aggre­gates and to den­si­fy the net­works of actors involved 

Le magazine

Novembre 2023 - N°61

Activité physique, nutrition & santé

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