What we do

To achieve the set goals, NODES implements a shared methodology called Booster methodology, which encompasses the main actions of the ecosystem in 5 macro-activities
The activities of the NODES Ecosystem

NODES' activities focus on animation and networking, research, skills and services development, innovation, and acceleration.

To achieve NODES’s objectives, the consortium has defined a common methodology – named NODES’ Booster methodology – based on the partners’ recognizable experiences on previous actions, consolidated in a systematic approach to address the overall challenges faced by Spoke NODES’ Booster Methodology consists of five Boosters addressing the main actions of the ecosystem: engagement and development of the ecosystem network, research activities, competences and skills enhancement, innovation, and acceleration activities. 

All the Boosters have a main target user(s) to whom the activities are aimed and involve specific Spoke partners, nevertheless, all Boosters interact with each other to generate a flow of opportunities for the entire ecosystem. 


The Boosters will enable collaborations and common actions among the research system, the production system and local institutions by enhancing research results, facilitating technology transfer and accelerating the digital transformation of businesses and production processes working towards an economic and environmental sustainability and social impact of the territories involved.

1. Ecosystem engagement and development booster

Will ensure a wide engagement of the different actors within the Spoke’s territories, activating them to foster and support research and innovation within the ecosystem and generating collaboration and cooperation opportunities. It will coordinate all communication, promotion and dissemination activities as well as the management of the open opportunities (cascade funding) for the actors of the ecosystem. It will map the actors within the territories on which the Spokes are going to operate, both in terms of business potential of the participating entities, and in terms of strategic positioning, creating technological value chains. It will also manage the Spoke Stakeholders Committee (formed by public institutions, civil society, clusters and other entities) and the relations with other regional, national, European and international entities to develop potential collaborations. Main targets include SMEs, university spin-offs, start-ups, research groups and students. 

2. Research booster

Will carry out applied research activities with and for companies, to ensure an effective interaction between leading universities and research centers, scientific and industrial associations, important players from the industry, society and policy makers. It will nurture ideas, inventions, and innovations generated in universities and transfer them to the industrial and social networks, fostering the relations, synergies, and cross-fertilization between different sectors. The research activities will be carried out by the different groups involved in the Spoke thematic and focused on the different lines of applied research defined in the framework of the flagship projects, with a Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 4–5, guaranteeing a quick knowledge transfer to the companies, and promoting mutual benefits to companies and universities from a micro up to a macro-economic point of view. Main targets include research groups, technicians, companies.

3. Competence booster

Will reinforce human capital and industrial competences, in particular for SMEs’ employees in areas such as digitalisation and innovation management skills, thus strengthening skills and competences to manage the challenges of industrial transition linked to digitalization and net-zero carbon economy. It will also support the development of entrepreneurial knowledge, skills and mindset in students and researchers, through trainings on innovation and hi-tech entrepreneurship including industrial PhD programs, topic-specific master programs, innovation and entrepreneurship programs. Main targets include professionals and managers, PhD students, and young and newly graduate specialists.

4. Innovation booster

Will support the evolution of highly innovative products and services generated by academic and industrial research activities. It will manage tools and resources for technology advancement and business orientation research activities, supporting innovation activities aimed at increasing the TRL starting from values compatible with the outputs generated by the research activities (Research Booster) up to those referring to products/solutions that are ready to enter in the final step of the production before being introduced to the market (TRL 6-7). It will favor and support the creation of new start-ups funded by academic research teams (spin-offs), and the introduction and development of highly innovative products/services from existing Start-up and SMEs promoting their growth and business acceleration towards their market. Main targets include research groups, students, SMEs and start-ups.

5. Acceleration booster

Will foster the growth of new Spin-offs based on applied research results of the spoke and its affiliates, new tech start-up emerging from the local ecosystem, and new service-oriented start-ups that focus on new business models that exploit the knowledge/infrastructures/data developed within NODES ecosystem. It will organize activities aimed at fostering SMEs and Start-ups access to private investments, market uptake, business growth and internationalization; and manage resources (vouchers) for the acceleration for new ventures and SMEs (with complementary actions to the ones envisaged on the Innovation Booster). It will also setup partnerships for the identification and testing of new business models, the integration within value chains of the relevant sectors, the definition of an appropriate financial strategy for growth. 
Main targets include SMEs, start-ups, research groups, banks foundations, other interested actors.