Stimulating innovation is in the port authorities’ agenda
The ESPO Fact-Finding Report ‘Trends in EU Ports Governance 2016’ that was published in June 2016 examines for the first time the role that port authorities play in bringing innovation into their port.
Innovation has many different dimensions. First of all, two thirds of respondent ports seem to look for new business models and opportunities for the port authority. Like in other sectors, new business models and start-ups may radically change the way in which a sector operates. Secondly, two thirds of the port authorities also partner in innovation projects with customers, port operators or other companies in order to stimulate the uptake of innovative solutions in the port. The adoption of emerging technologies and digitalisation is also taking off in the port sector with 60% of port authorities being active in this field. Finally, it is remarkable that one third of the respondent ports is working to create an innovation ecosystem in the port, bringing together resources and actors in a favourable environment for innovation.
Background: Trends in EU Ports Governance
The information above was retrieved from the results of the sixth edition of the ESPO Fact-Finding Report ‘Trends in EU Ports Governance 2016’ that was published in June 2016. The aim of the report is to monitor port governance and organisation in Europe and its evolution over time. It is based on a web-based survey that was sent directly to individual port authorities. 86 port authorities from 19 EU Member States, Norway and Iceland completed the questionnaire. Together, they represent more than 200 ports and more than 57% of the overall volume of cargo handled in the European Union.
The PORTOPIA platform will bring an important value added for ports in terms of governance models. In fact, some of the fields of the ESPO Fact-Finding Report are going to be transferred to the PORTOPIA platform, allowing ports to compare geographical ranges, EU averages and evolutions over time in terms of governance model across Europe.