In the context of the quality label "Cluster-Excellence Baden Wuerttemberg" evaluating the management follows a standardized, multi-step process until the awarding of the excellence label. The labelling process for regional cluster initiatives and statewide networks is designed identical. Based on the appraisal, an independent advisory board decides on awarding the quality label.
The overall evaluation process for obtaining the quality label "Cluster Excellence Baden-Wuerttemberg" is performed according to a standardised process equally applying to all interested managers of regional cluster initiatives and networks at federal state level. The process is implemented by VDI/VDE Innovation + Technik who has been assigned by the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing.
The process steps in detail:
- Submission of the evaluation request
Regional cluster initiatives or networks at federal state level have to submit their evaluation request at VDI/VDE Innovation + Technik GmbH in written form. All cluster initiatives and networks at federal state level registered in Baden-Wuerttemberg and listed in the Cluster Atlas and Cluster Database are entitled to apply for such a funded evaluation.
- Examination of the evaluation request
VDI/VDE Innovation + Technik GmbH examines upon receipt of the request, whether the criteria for an evaluation are met.
- Access to the self-testing tool
If the requirements are fulfilled and if the cluster initiative or the network at federal state level appears to be qualified the applicant will receive the access data for the free online-based self-test. This self-test is based on the indicators of cluster management excellence and is an obligatory element of the labelling process. After notification of the user name, password and web address, the self-test hast to be conducted within ten working days. It serves the purpose of proving whether or not the applicant does principally fulfil the required minimum criteria and standards. The successful completion of the self-test constitutes a compulsory condition for the implementation of the evaluation process. Nevertheless, a positive result of the self-test does not automatically take for granted a positive evaluation result.
- Recommendation for evaluation
Based on the results of the evaluation request examination and the self-test, VDI/VDE Innovation + Technik GmbH presents its recommendation to the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing with regard to the applicant's qualification of being evaluated. Having made its decision, the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing notifies the applicant about the respective result and presents its eventual justifications.
- Approval and conclusion of contract
Following the applicant's approval notified by the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing, VDI/VDE Innovation + Technik GmbH will conclude a contract with the cluster initiative or the network at federal state level. From that date, the evaluation is subject to charging.
- Recommendation for issuing the quality label
Upon completion of the evaluation process, VDI/VDE Innovation + Technik GmbH informs the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing about the result and makes a recommendation as to whether or not the applicant shall receive the quality label "Cluster Excellence Baden-Wuerttemberg". The decision about the award of the quality label is based on a final assessment by an advisory council organized within the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing.
- Award and validity of the quality label
The quality label "Cluster Excellence Baden-Wuerttemberg" is awarded by the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing and will be valid for two years. With the award of this quality label, the applicant automatically receives the EU-Gold-Label without additional costs or reviews. Upon expiry of the two years, it will be necessary to repeat the evaluation process in order to retain the quality label "Cluster Excellence Baden-Wuerttemberg".
- ClusterAgentur Baden-Württemberg