Kirsten Alferink Cramer, Odoorn 

Owner of Glas van Cramer (Glass by Cramer)

1. Why did you join the Osiris activities?

My name is Kirsten Alferink Cramer and I have a company in stained glass. I think there should be a network of companies like my own working in crafts. OSIRIS offers that possibility. We are building that network through the project . We need to reach more people and create job opportunities for the youth and other groups of unemployed people. But there are also opportunities for the companies themselves, to pass on knowledge and learning skills to new people and to keep the crafts alive. I know from my own experience that it is difficult to get the proper training in a craft. I think every entrepreneur should contribute to society in some way. OSIRIS is making that easier for us.

2. What did you learn from participating?

To create opportunities you have to be able to think innovatively. In my experience not everyone can do that. We must help each other and we can also complement each other. One person can be a great creative thinker whilst the other has access to broad network.

We started off with great enthusiasm and have created lots of new ideas. We now need to make these ideas tangible. It is difficult to balance everyone’s interests in one project. That’s not really possible, so we have to make choices about what we want to work on in the coming period.

3. How can you transfer this knowledge to your own work?

Through the conversations I have with other entrepreneurs because of the OSIRIS project, new ideas arise. We want to set up a project in which my company will participate and will also achieve social gains.

4. Did you get new useful contacts for your own work?

Yes, I have already gained a number of useful contacts, both direct and indirect.

5. Given the lessons learned – how do you see that the innovation system in your own region can be improved?

In the South-East of Drenthe there is particularly room for improvement in terms of involving people more with OSIRIS and LEADER. We need to spread knowledge and let more people know about the opportunities for subsidies. Maybe we could approach all the chairmen of the village associations and ask them to give more publicity to our projects. Additionally, more entrepreneurs should be involved in the projects that we want to set up in OSIRIS. Perhaps we can use the Chamber of Commerce for this, or the knowledge cafes of Universities in this area.