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National Competence Centre for Social Innovation

The European Social Fund Agency has been entrusted with the establishment of a National Competence Centre for Social Innovation, the activities of which would include both centralized assistance to institutions operating in this field in Lithuania, as well as networking and exchange of experience at the EU level.

The new competence centre will support innovative projects and authorities operating under ESF + priorities, provide information and consultation to those interested in developing social innovation, provide guidance and training to different target groups, and strengthen international cooperation between stakeholders in this field.

To develop these activities, the ESFA, together with partners from the ESF managing authorities in Belgium, the Czech Republic and Finland, is implementing a project called PEnCIL (Pan European Social Innovation Lab), funded by the European Commission.

The main project activities under the responsibility of ESFA are as follows:

  • Drawing a comprehensive overview of the social innovation ecosystem synthesising the visions, needs, opportunities and priorities of relevant social innovation stakeholders and promoters, in order to produce a shared strategy and action plan for boosting social innovation in a Member State, including under the ESF+.
  • Organising awareness rising and inspirational actions for social innovation promoters.
  • Creating and facilitating (thematic) networks of social innovation promoters, academics and local bodies to speed up mutual learning and exchanging good practices.
  • Continuously monitoring and assessing public support towards social innovation, and drafting recommendations for improving the responsiveness, effectiveness and governance of public policy towards social innovation.

The following project results are planned to be achieved during the project:

  • Establishment and development of the National Competence Centre for Social Innovation, officially approved by the Managing authority of the ESF of the Republic of Lithuania.
  • Analysis of strengths and weaknesses related to social innovation and identification of areas or methods that could be a source of inspiration for other countries / areas.
  • Identifying the needs, priorities and opportunities of different stakeholders.
  • Preparation of a report on the policy, legislative and institutional measures adopted by the national government to promote social innovation.
  • Development of recommendations and policy guidelines to improve the responsiveness of social innovation mechanisms, tools and resources.
  • Development of a draft joint stakeholder strategy and action plan to support social innovation in the country (including ESF + support).
  • Establishment of a network of national competence centers in EU Member States for synergies and quality in the development of social innovation.
  • Preparation of examples of good practice projects for testing in partners’ member state.

Project duration: 24 months (2021.05.01-2023.04.31)

Project value: 216.865,10 Eur

It is hoped that the project will foster a systematic approach to the development of Social Innovation, the dissemination of knowledge and experience and the synergy of the potential of all stakeholders, creating value and a breakthrough in Social Innovation not only in Lithuania but also at European level in the Member States.