The CEntre for REsearch and TEchnology – THessaly (CE.RE.TE.TH) is a legal, non-profit entity organized under the auspices of the General Secretariat for Research and Technology (GSRT), of the Greek Ministry of Education and Religious Affairs, Culture and Sports. CE.RE.TE.TH. was established in January 2006.
CE.RE.TE.TH is comprised of one unique Institute, the Insitute of Research and Technology of Thessaly wich is based on four major departments: i) Mechatronics, ii) AgroTechnology, iii) Biomedical and iv) Kinesiology.
The Center’s main mission is to conduct basic, applied, and technological research that leads to new products and services with industrial, economic and social impact and supports the R&D needs of local, national and European industrial and government institutions. Moreover, CE.RE.TE.TH. focuses on bringing together scientists from different disciplines in an environment with advanced technological capabilities aiming at dealing with pressing research topics, as well as solving complex problems which affect the quality of life, the environment, and the economic development of Central Greece.
The Centre for Research and Technology – Thessaly (CE.RE.TE.TH) is a legal, non-profit entity organized under the auspices of the General Secretariat for Research and Technology (GSRT), of the Greek Ministry of Education and Religious Affairs, Culture and Sports. CERETETH was established in January 2006.
The Center’s main mission is to conduct basic, applied, and technological research that leads to new products and services with industrial, economic and social impact.
CE.RE.TE.TH. is comprised of the Central Administration (CA) and one unique Insitute, the Institute of Research and Technology which is based on four major departments:
The Central Administration (CA) is located in the city of Volos in the Technology Park of Thessaly and is responsible for the administrative operation of the Center and the four Departments that are located at the four prefectures of Thessaly.
The centre is expected to have the following effects
It will strengthen industrial growth of region and the business dexterity through existing companies and the creation of new ones that will be based on “knowledge economy”.
It will create an institution that will provide services and transfer the research and technological achievements of the Center to industry and will help the establishment of specialized spin-off companies in areas such as agromaterials, food and drinks, and biofuels (biodiesel and bioethanol).
It will help the primary agricultural production and direct its evolution in a way compatible with the European Union guidelines.
It will help the University of Thessaly (UTH) improve its infrastructure, it will employ the scientists in the Region and pro-vide an extra reason for them to stay in Thessaly, and will attract other scientists in the area.
It will create the necessary mechanisms for the transfer of the knowledge created in the Institutes, and will help the development of UTH, as the Center will be “open” to all scientists that work in the areas covered by the Institutes, especially those of UTH.
It will provide the necessary mechanisms that will allow for the submission of proposals for large scale projects funded by the State or private companies, which proposals cannot be realized within the existing framework of the Greek Universities.
It will participate in large scale research activities with flexibility and the appropriate means of technology transfer, such as the “Technology Park of Thessaly”.
It will support research and services related to problems of the Region of Thessaly.
- It will finance the establishment of a research infrastructure that can be used by UTH, the local industries and agriculture, and the Region of Thessaly in general.
The scientific research, the development of technology, and innovation are at the center of the “knowledge economy”, which is the basic factor for the increase of competitiveness and employment. For this reason, the European Union (EU) set a goal to help the development of European research and double the corresponding budget, though the ERA program (European Re-search Area, COM (2004) 353
Each innovation pole is based on three axes of action: creation of knowledge, transfer of knowledge, and applications. These three axes constitute the core of activities of the Universities. Researchers create the knowledge in the Universities, which, in turn, transfer this knowledge to the society. Thus, the innovative businessmen develop, often in collaboration with the Universities, these ideas and bring the new products and services to the market, to our houses and offices.
The Universities hold a key position in knowledge economy, as they are at the crossroads of research, technology and innovation. Indeed, the Universities employ 34% of the total number of researchers in Europe, the number varying from country to country (e.g., 26% in Germany, 55% in Spain, more than 70% in Greece). The Universities are also responsible for the 80% of basic research that is carried out in Europe
Recent studies examined the motives of companies to expand in new areas, and to show mobility or remain indifferent to new developments. Several studies have shown that two of the most important motives are the access to high skilled workers and the prospects of “knowledge spillovers” that comes from the local research, innovation and specialization.
The University of Thessaly and the Polytechnic in Thessaly, the Technology Park, and the local Development Agencies established by the four prefectures of Thessaly, form a strong technology core that can contribute significantly to the development of the Region. In particular, four Schools of UTH (the Engineering School with 69 faculty members, the School of Health Sciences with 109 faculty, the School of Agriculture with 39 faculty, and the Department of Physical Education with 21 faculty) provide a strong scientific team in the area, that can and should be used for the development of the Region of Thessaly.
However, the current administrative and financial structure of the Greek Universities often put strict restrictions on the way the Universities can operate. In order to overcome these difficulties, several Research Centers were established (often “near” Universities), which promoted the results of the basic and technological research and increased the interactions between the research units and the industries. These Research Centers were also able i) to go after certain research grants, which the universities could not pursue, and take advantage of the available funds, which would have been “lost” otherwise, ii) to employ the local scientists in the Region and provide an extra reason for them to stay in that Region, and iii) to create jobs that require special-ized scientific skills of high quality, iv) to establish and help spin-off companies, and v) to promote innovative ideas and accelerate their use. One of the main reasons of success of such institutions is the fact that, like universities, they have a permanent scientific base that supports continuously their activities, without the restrictions set by the university structure.
We believe that the establishment of such a Research Centre in Region of Thessaly with the name “Centre for Research and Technology – Thessaly” (CE.RE.TE.TH) that covers the basic components of industry, agriculture, health services, and education, is essential for the support and development of the “Innovation Pole” in Thessaly. The scientific components of CE.RE.TE.TH are chosen so that they cover areas with international scientific interest, take into account the lack of such establishments in the Region of Thessaly, and are complementary to existing Research Centers in the nation. CE.RE.TE.TH is expected to develop into a scientific “reference point” in Thessaly, Greece, the Balkans, and the Middle East, and to promote the scientific presence of our country worldwide.
The establishment of CE.RE.TE.TH in the Region Thessaly contributes to the expansion of the research network of the country in a new geographic area and provides a scientific basis for regional development.
CE.RE.TE.TH will play a very important role in supporting the efforts of the Innovation Pole in Thessaly and will contribute to the realization of the goals set by the Innovation Pole.