The Third Industrial Revolution in Hauts-de-France, based on energy transition and digital technologies, aims at changing behaviours and transform the economy.
The territory of the region Hauts-de-France has been the ground of two important industrial revolutions in the past (the first one with coal and steam engine, the second one with oil and electricity). The scheme developed by the Regional Council together with the economist Jeremy Rifkin aims at shifting to the Third industrial revolution: a revolution based on the energy transition and digital technology that will change the world, the way of living in this world, to produce, to consume, to move…
Since 2013 the Hauts-de-France costal chamber of commerce and industries (CCI) provides support to every project which fits in one of the pillars of the Third industrial revolution. It is a new economy, a new dynamism, so the CCI supports all the new emerging initiatives. When a new project arrives, the CCI defines together with the project’s owner, the steps for development and improvement and the possible funding modes. Subsidies, participative funding or subsidised bank loans can be used to financially support the project. Each project is different, but various solutions exist to strengthen these actions.
Initiated by the Regional Council Hauts-de-France and the CCI, with contribution from the World Forum Lille and the Alliance network, this initiative can rely on numerous financial supports from local authorities to European funds.
Financial resources are estimated to be around 500 million euros/year: public and private investments, 5 specialised crowdfunding platforms and even an open to all citizen’s savings account dedicated to the Third industrial revolution.
Evidence of success
The main success is to have succeeded through a voluntary and collaborative approach in gathering political representatives, economic leaders, academics and all the people who feel involved in this approach.
In a more practical manner, more than 700 regional initiatives have already been supported in a range of thematic covering renewable energies, intelligent transport systems, sustainable territories, recycling, well-being…
Not all enterprises are ready to get involved. They need time to reflect on a development strategy that can make their need/capacities fit with this revolution.
Revolution means breaking with today’s model, and implies technological breaks, which sometimes are limited by regulation constraints.
Potential for learning or transfer
The model developed by J. Rifkin is adaptable. It should not be seen as an end itself but as a tool to be appropriated on a specific territory and be adapted to its specificities, assets and constraints. Every territory can benefit from the experience of the other and vice-versa. It is an on-going improvement process and regions can learn from every experience, even if it is developed on another territory.
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