Cluster - what is it?

A Cluster is a group of related enterprises, institutions and other organizations operating in the same area. Clusters are often created to start cooperation that allows participants to build a sustainable competitive advantage. It is possible by the use of common resources and diffusion of technology. Cluster is created by an initiator, who is later involved in coordinating the activities of the cluster.  it is very important  that the coordinator does not derive benefits from coordinating and all profits made jointly by participants are allocated to its further development.
Entities participating in the cluster continue to compete with each other, but cooperate in areas where it is possible to release the synergies of joint operations. The synergy effect is for example:

  • diffusion of know-how and exchange of personnel within the cluster,

  • improve the efficiency and capacity,

  • improve the absorption of innovation,

  • attracting new members and new resources.

Competition stimulates development, but does not exclude joint action that can further assist this development.  One of the best examples of synergy is the Silicon Valley in the USA. The development of information technology industry attracts the best professionals from around the world. It allows companies operating there to build sustainable competitive advantage through access to skilled workers and specialized know-how.

Participation in the cluster allows both small, medium and large companies to derive benefits from resource sharing and exchange of experiences and knowledge. An example of the benefits of participation in the cluster, is to provide the small business access to modern technologies developed by research units, which previously had no access due to high costs. However, large companies are able to reduce the risk of research work because the experience and knowledge of academic institutions allows them to choose a right direction of such work.
Effective co-operation of enterprises leads to create new jobs for skilled workers. The business sector collaboration with the science also increases chances of commercialization research results so scientific institutions are able to raise funds for further research and investment.

Mossakowski Medical Research Centre PAS

is an example of Polish entity that is initiating and coordinating cooperative relations.

The aim of this area is the promotion of Polish science, as well as improving the economic situation and competitiveness of the region.