Competence Centres form the cornerstone of the Digital Innovation Hubs in the SmartAgriHubs network. They provide the digital technological infrastructure of the DIH by offering advanced technical expertise, access to the latest knowledge and information on digital technologies, as well as test facilities such as labs, pilot and experimental facilities, and other technological and scientific infrastructure.
Within their respective Digital Innovation Hubs, Competence Centres cooperate with all relevant partners in the agri-food innovation value chain to support farmers, businesses and other agri-food entities in their digital transformation. This entails establishing connections with a wide range of technology companies, research institutions, and digital solutions providers as well as potential users and customers.
Given that no single Competence Centre can be the front-runner in all fields, strong linkages will be built between complementary Competence Centres, both within and between the different Digital Innovation Hubs. At the start of the initiative, SmartAgriHubs involves several hundred Competence Centres and is expected to reach a pan-European network of at least 2000.
SmartAgriHub Competence Centers will also include relevant digital technologies and Competence Centers which form part of non-Agri Digital Innovation Hubs in order to spur innovation and cross-fertilisation, and use existing European resources efficiently. By providing the test infrastructure and know-how for digital innovation, as well as closely cooperating with Digital Innovation Hubs and Flagship Innovation Experiments, Competence Centres help facilitate the realisation of digital solutions for the agri-food sector and form an integral part of the greater SmartAgriHubs innovation ecoysystem.