“Developing the Innovation Capacity of the Romanian Textile Concept Cluster” Project (InoTex)

Project title: “Developing the Innovation Capacity of the Romanian Textile Concept Cluster”

Program: PNCDI III

Project code: PN-III-P2-2.1-CLS-2017-0015 / 3CLS / 2018

Source of funding: Project funded by the Ministry of Research and Innovation , CCCDI-UEFISCDI; the PNCDI III program

Beneficiary: Romanian Textile Concept Association

Project manager: Sara Wechsler

Project start date: 01.07.2018

Project end date: 30.06.2020

The aim of the project “Developing the Innovation Capacity of the Romanian Textile Concept Cluster” is to support the increasing competitiveness of the cluster members and the sustainable economic development of the textile garments sector in the Muntenia Sud region through the competent technological facilities and services resulting from R&D activities offered by the RTxC cluster. The implementation of this project aims at supporting the RTxC cluster in the development of the innovation development research agenda, but also in implementing the implementation plan, by guiding the joint efforts of the cluster members.

The innovation capacity of SME members in the cluster must become one of the specific features of this sector, along with flexibility and market orientation. The success of the innovative activities developed by SMEs will result both in the development of the markets through the introduction of new or improved products, as well as through the improvement and innovation in the field of organizational and technological processes specific to each company, including the distribution processes. The better organization of the economic actors would favor the transition to a higher quality stage and would allow the textile and clothing industry to be maintained among the competitive sectors of the South Muntenia Region.

The main objectives pursued within this project are:
- Enhance EMC’s capacity to share all resources, which will ensure implementation of the CDI strategic agenda and lead to sustainable development based on innovation and internationalization
- Increasing the (eco) -innovation of cluster enterprises in the South Muntenia Region in order to implement the concept of circular economy
-Supporting SMEs in the Muntenia South region in the textiles sector in terms of business, product / service sustainability by identifying and facilitating business projects as a result of research and technology development as well as partnerships between business and academia
- Increasing the capacity of the RTxC cluster management team and its members to connect and integrate into European and international textile and textile chains and networks

The stages of the project are:

STAGE 1. Elaboration of the strategic CDI agenda – end date 31.12.2018
- Activity 1.1 Analysis of the current stage – activity performed
- Activity 1.2 Strategic planning – activity performed
- Activity 1.3 Innovation audits – activity performed
- Activity 1.4 Working group Innovation – activity performed
Result: RDI Strategic Agenda – Draft


- “Study regarding the current state of the innovation degree of the RTxC cluster”, based on questionnaires, 24 companies have been interviewed in order to analyze the sources and opportunities for innovation at the cluster level
- “Preliminary RDI strategic agenda”, which sets the RDI goals and objectives of the cluster.
- Organization of a strategic seminar on innovation issues in Giurgiu, in which the preliminary CDI Strategic Agenda of RTxC was finalized and the working groups were established on the project
- Development of the cooperation within the cluster – the working groups were extended and finalized – Innovation Working Group; Internationalization Working Group; Education Working Group; Project Management Working Group
- Specific innovation services offered to the cluster companies (technological and innovation auditing services and specialized mentoring / coaching services for the cluster companies) by conducting 21 business review audits, 5 specialized innovation audits and 1 competence mapping audit, by which the degree of innovation of the companies, the potential / orientation towards innovation were evaluated, and recommendations were made for the development of the activity through financial and non-financial support services or for finding new business opportunities.
- The stages of the strategic planning process were established and a Draft CDI strategic agenda was established through activities aimed to analyse the categories of products / technologies / services / processes to be developed by the cluster / members of the cluster.
- Manual visual identity appendix – through which the elements of visual identity corresponding to the project and the rules for their use were established
- Communication and dissemination plan – which sets the purpose of the communication and dissemination plan, the objectives and principles of communication, the target audience, the means and the communication activities within the project
- Dissemination of the project on the social media page of the cluster
- Dissemination of the project on the news section of the cluster web-site
- Dissemination of project information at meetings and events attended by representatives of the cluster

STAGE 2. Elaboration of the implementation plan and starting the process of expanding and internationalization – end date 31.12.2019
- Activity 2.1 Elaboration of the strategic RDI agenda – activity performed
- Activity 2.2 Establishing the stages of the implementation plan – activity performed
- Activity 2.3 Study on the superior valorisation of textile waste – ongoing activity
- Activity 2.4 Waste textile database – ongoing activity
- Activity 2.5 Training activities – ongoing activity
- Activity 2.6 Eco-Innovation capacity auditing services for cluster members – ongoing activity
- Activity 2.7 ESCA Silver Label
- Activity 2.8 Elaboration of the implementation plan
- Activity 2.9 International brokerage – ongoing activity


- Organization of a strategic seminar on innovation topics in which the participants were presented with the draft of the Final Strategic Agenda
- The Strategic Research-development-innovation agenda of the cluster was finalized following the comments received from the members
- Research nuclei were created for each identified RDI direction: Economic growth based on research – development – innovation, Industrial policies adapted to the globalization era and Promotion of an economy with a higher employment rate
- establishing the stages of the implementation plan associated with the strategic CDI agenda of the cluster and of the human, material and financial resources necessary to reach the set objectives, according to the strategic objectives set in the agenda
- elaboration of a Study on the superior valorisation of textile waste presenting the importance and the methods of capitalizing on textile waste for obtaining new products, based on the data collected from the members of the cluster
- creation of a database on textile waste resulting from the production process, achieved by collecting data from the memebers
- organizing a training session on financing topics for the members
- organizing a training session for the cluster management team
- conducting eco-innovation audits at 2 companies chosen according to the results of the activity 1.3
- ESCA audit for reconfirming the level of excellence of the cluster
- finalizing the implementation plan associated with the strategic CDI agenda of the cluster by finalizing the Action Plan until 2023
- participation in various international brokerage events in order to disseminate the project: The fourth informal winter meeting of clusters – Piatra Neamt, European Cluster Conference – Connecting Ecosystems: Bridge. Inspire. Change – Bucharest, Transylvania International Cluster Conference 2019 – Cluj Napoca
- Dissemination of the project on the social media page of the Facebook / Romanian Textile Concept cluster
- Dissemination of the project within the annual event Cluster Day Romanian Textile Concept – October 2019
- Dissemination of the project within the International Conference of the Textile Researchers – Tex Teh

STAGE 3. Finalizing the process of elaborating the expansion cluster strategies on the domestic and external markets – end date 30.06.2020
Activity 3.1 – Scientific manifestation
Activity 3.2 – Technical Information center development planning
Activity 3.3 – Elaboration of the expansion and internationalization cluster strategy


- Planning the development of a Technical Information Center
- Developing the Internationalization Strategy of the Cluster
- Organization of a strategic seminar on innovation topics in which the participants were presented with the draft of the Final Strategic Agenda