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Benefits of industry clusters

15 December 2021

Man loading wine into a truck

Cardiff University’s Co-Growth Project has explored the benefits afforded by Inno’vin, a cluster of members of the wine industry in Nouvelle-Aquitane, France.

The project, in collaboration with KEDGE Business School and Portland State University, looked at how collaborative innovation is facilitated by Inno’vin. They set out to understand how innovation-orientated clusters can facilitate and boost collaboration between members and achieve successful outcomes.

Inno’vin, one of the leading clusters in Europe dedicated to the wine industry, brings together 170 members including wineries, grape growers, suppliers and other wine-related institutions.

The academic team interviewed several cluster members during visits to Bordeaux and on Zoom, as well as studying six Inno’vin projects. The projects studied related to vineyard and production equipment, and the potential uses of supplier products.

The importance of the role that Inno’vin plays as a central hub in the cluster was immediately apparent, with benefits from the projects including enhanced reputation and quality for members, and improved economic, social and environmental indicators. They also found an increase in the rate of collaboration and synergy between the members.

Professor Maneesh Kumar, Co-Growth Project Co-investigator, commented: “The study with the Inno’vin cluster helped the team understand how to create an innovation ecosystem led by a central hub which can benefit a wide variety of stakeholders engaged in promoting innovation and sustainable growth for the Bordeaux wine industry.

“Inno’vin is a perfect example of how to drive collaboration, support the development of member capabilities and achieve successful outcomes. This model of innovation and collaboration can be applied to any other industrial cluster.”

The study was initiated by the Co-Growth Project, which studies collaboration within the drinks industry in Wales. Dr Vasco Sanchez Rodrigues, Co-Growth Project Lead, said: “This study has given us insight into how a world-class industry cluster orchestrates the development and sharing of knowledge between manufacturers, technology innovation providers and researchers.

“We now have the potential to showcase and use this knowledge in the Welsh drinks sector, further driving innovation and positive industry outcomes.”

Professor Mellie Pullman, Portland State University and University of Groningen, was a visiting Professor at Cardiff University when the study commenced and welcomed the opportunity to work on this study. “Of course, a study on collaboration in the wine industry is a natural fit for the mission of Co-Growth. This study would not have been possible without KEDGE Business School, which is situated in the heart of Bordeaux with many wine industry partners."

Tatiana Bouzdine Chameeva, KEDGE Business School agreed that the collaboration with the Co-Growth Project was an ideal fit, “this collaboration with Co-Growth will be of great benefit to Inno’vin and the Bordeaux wine region, in addition to generating high quality academic papers. Creating this international partnership between KEDGE Business School and Cardiff University will be fantastic for sharing best practice and expertise, in addition to broadening our academic community”.

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