All 2 entries tagged Collaboration

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March 20, 2008

Farmers and Collaboration

Writing about web page

The Arthur Rank CentreFarmers and collaboration are two words that are rarely linked in the UK. Search for the words together and it is always overseas. UK farmers do not do co-operatives. This was the consensus as I met with Warwickshire CC rural experts and farmers at the RASE’s Stoneleigh Park. Despite this there were real opportunities for collaboration in the countryside. Discounts for agri-chemicals, sharing of transport to distant markets never mind the plant-based novel materials etc., explored by the RICE project, .

The meeting challenged me to go back to my own Ulster farming background. There I had seen a new generation of farmers take their young farmers social network and extended it to farm collaboration.
Raw materials photos from 'Plant Based Futures' site.
They did this in three steps;
  • They moved away from being generalists and specialised.
  • They trusted others in their area of expertise. On many farms it still made sense to have mixed production. This was possible by sharing expertise.
  • When the bilateral swaps became too complex they created contracts that incentivised the expert to maximise the return for the group. This has led to experimentation and innovation.

After exploring my own anecdotal experience it struck me that successful collaboration between farmers was based on processes and skills in just the way that CCM’s research has demonstrated with our region’s manufacturers.

February 28, 2008

Substantial business growth

It has been a very busy and productive period with a lot of assists to our SMEs. It is really difficult to distinguish any one of our SMEs since all of them are unique and therefore interesting and enjoyable to work with.

I worked with companies like GF Laser that after few interactions have achieved substantial business growth. One of the Midlands premier 3D laser cutting services, GF Laser has won a number of new business deals from leads received via their optimised website and competence profile on WMCCM.
I was also very pleased to see the participation of our SMEs to EU research projects. For example, Edwards Precision Engineering participated in a Warwick University research bid for EU Framework Programme 7 (FP7) funds, the SMENET project. SMENET has passed EC first stage of scrutiny and a full proposal has been submitted. SMENET, an over €3 million proposed research project, aspires to investigate, create and test tools to enable cross-European SME collaborations. Edwards Precision Engineering will be the UK engineering SME to test and validate SMENET innovative ideas along with other European partners. Edwards Precision Engineering has the opportunity to pioneer new business methods and obtain knowledge in how to work closely with European partners and gain access to high value national and international business.

For similar opportunities, please access our newly established service in finding EU research projects that best suits you.


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