Alp ICT: a multidimensional support for business
In today’s world, marked by the continuous evolution of technology and lifestyle, it takes constant attention to keep an economy vibrant. In parallel, numerous examples show that only through organized, sustained effort can a business location reach its goals of development and long-term competitiveness.
In the field of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT), Western Switzerland has opted for a model that profiles the region as a center of expertise over the long-term. This model is supported by “Alp ICT” - one of four platforms of sectoral promotion under the auspices of the cantons of Western Switzerland. Launched in 2008, this cluster is the result of political vision and represents recognition of the ICT sector’s importance. Alp ICT’s role as an international showcase is important, but its purpose goes far beyond that role: it also seeks to provide multidimensional support to businesses. Innovation, synergy, visibility, market access and promotion - these are the main axes of Alp ICT’s work.Supporting innovation is Alp ICT’s primary role. As in all knowledge-intensive sectors, the ability to benefit from R&D efforts is the real engine of growth. Thus, the work of Alp ICT is decisive, whether in assisting in the development of innovation, in facilitating the process of Open Innovation or in maintaining the flow of investment to start-ups.Promoting synergy is the second axis of Alp ICT’s work. For expertise alone is not enough; knowing how to bring it together is necessary for maximizing potential. Like the Blue Brain project, a true symbol of the opportunities offered by synergy, innumerable projects have come out of the collaboration that our region fosters. In this context, Alp ICT’s mission is to support the strengthening of collaborative processes, to the benefit of the companies and institutions of Western Switzerland.Developing skills and synergies inevitably requires making known our qualities. Here, too, Alp ICT plays a key role in bringing promising entrepreneurial projects to national and international attention, in order to consistently support the region’s visibility and image of excellence.Another integral part of this political support is facilitating companies’ access to markets, for, in the world of ICT, success depends largely on the ability of a company to enter major markets. In this context, Alp ICT provides its expertise and network to create opportunities and facilitate contacts for companies based in Western Switzerland.The final prong of Alp ICT’s strategy is to support the attractiveness of Western Switzerland as a whole, because the region’s current success is also due to the many foreign companies that have chosen to locate here. Through the expertise and research they develop in the region, these companies create jobs and contribute to local expertise. Thanks to its knowledge of the ICT industry and its needs, Alp ICT helps to sustain the image of Western Switzerland so that the future of our region will continue to be recognized as of one the world centers for this industry.Pierre-François UngerState Councillor in charge of the Department of Regional Affairs, Economy and HealthRepublic and State of Geneva