WIDER – Green Growing of SMEs: Innovation and Development in the Energy Sector in the Mediterranean Area

The European population is getting older, which means that the number of people over 65 is increasing. This ageing trend presents numerous social changes and challenges, for which adequate solutions need to be found. WIDER will address this issue through an innovative approach.

The main objective of WIDER is to contribute to the identification and strengthening of innovation capacities, knowledge management and networking of the Mediterranean SMEs in order to improve the position of new products of small and medium-sized companies all along the supply chain of eco smart housing for active and independent living of the ageing generation in seven regional industrial Mediterranean areas.


The project will support the implementation of pilot projects of selected small-sized local companies in partner regions. Thus the companies will get the chance to enhance the value of their products and/or to position themselves more easily on new markets. The project focuses on energy efficiency catered to the needs of an ageing population who wish to live independently and maintain and improve their living standards. 

In addition, it is important to know that WIDER will:

  • build cross-sector network relations amongst stake holders in the regions where the project takes place;
  • strengthen the cooperation between SMEs, research, innovation centers, intermediary bodies to foster innovation;
  • establish communication channels between SMEs and the ageing population for product testing according to their needs and preferences;
  • facilitate the sustainability of project results through user driven eco-smart strategy (strategy applicable for other regions);
  • enhancing social demand/awareness for locality (local SMEs for the local older generations);
  • inspire new forms of innovation;
  • establish new forms of cooperation between politicians, business sector and region’s ageing population, through specific associations, day care centers, etc.

The WIDER partnership consists of 10 partners from 7 MED countries (Italy, Spain, France, Greece, Slovenia, Portugal, Italy and Bosnia and Herzegovina). They are: local and regional decision makers, local and regional development agencies, companies and associations, one international organisation, one university and one chamber of commerce. 

Partners in the project:

Associated partners: AGE Platform Europe, Domotys and Telecom Italia


The programme focuses on cooperation between the regions of Europe in the entire Mediterranean region. In the framework of this programme the following 13 countries are cooperating within the area: Cyprus, France, Greece, Italy, Malta, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, United Kingdom, Albania, Croatia, Bosnia Herzegovina and Montenegro. The aim of the programme is to contribute to the whole area of cooperation, which will be able to compete with international rivals in order to ensure growth and employment for the next generation, to support territorial cohesion and actively contribute to environmental protection in the spirit of sustainable development. 

So far, 144 projects have been implemented, co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) up to a rate of 85%. 

For more information on the MED programme, please visit: www.programmemed.eu.

Project type
  • Other
Country of the coordinating institution
Geographical focus
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • International; Other
Scientifc field / Thematic focus
  • Social Sciences
January 2013 - June 2015

Entry created by Desiree Pecarz on December 2, 2013
Modified on February 28, 2014