ICN Achievements

The International Cleantech Network has a proven track record of providing added value for its members on a number of levels. Contracts have been negotiated during ICN meetings and network events, and common projects have been agreed upon amongst the cluster members of ICN. ICN Passport provides a unique opportunity for members to investigate foreign markets and receive assistance from the local cluster in order to develop business opportunities with local cleantech companies. ICN is also the perfect meeting place for exchanging knowledge about cluster management and the newest developments in the cleantech world. Subsequently, ICN has been recognized in a number or reports as a network that contributes significantly to the green growth on the global stage.

Business Growth

Through ICN managers meetings, Annual Meetings and other ICN networking events at various conferences, business delegations have had the opportunity to meet and engage in collaborations and investigate in business opportunities. Examples of the results of such encounters are presented below:

Spirae.dk – FDI from US to Denmark (2013)

The American smart grid company Spirae from Colorado (US) established its European headquarters in Copenhagen based on collaboration with ICN  Copenhagen Capacity Cleantech partners (now CLEAN, member of ICN) and Copenhagen Capacity.

Italy-Singapore contract signed at ICN’s 6th Managers Meeting (2012)

Cleantech companies from Singapore and Italy signed a commercial contract at the 6th ICN Managers Meeting that took place in conjunction with the GES conference in Singapore on 23-25 October 2012.

Transatlantic commercial partnership wins contract (2012)

Two engineering consultancies from Copenhagen and Colorado have partnered and won a contract for a climate adaptation strategy for a US city.

Trade mission at World Fair in Milan (2015)

Green Tech Cluster took part in trade mission to Milan World’s Fair Together with Lombardy Energy Cleantech Cluster. Green Tech Cluster organized a Workshop at the Austrian Expo Pavilion.

Common projects

ICN is working on a number of projects together with its members, including the following:

ICN cluster team secures EU funding for new waste-to-energy project (Coolsweep  2012-2015)

In December 2012, five ICN clusters and three organizational partners were awarded a project funded from the “Regions of Knowledge” call under the Seventh Framework Program. The ICN Coolsweep project is a three-year project focused on energy recovery from waste and an innovative use of by-products. Activities include mapping of cluster strongholds, facilitating better knowledge sharing and use of complementary waste-to-energy competences in participating clusters to develop efficient waste-based energy production.

ICN Letter of Support for ReCIRCLE projects (2016)

The application for the EU project for Urban Waste Management (ReCIRCLE), was written by ICN members, CLEAN (Denmark), OREEC (Norway) and Greentech Cluster (Austria). The project was supported by ICN who took part of the Advisory Board for the project.

Funding projects (2017)

From late 2016 to early 2017, ICN consortiums developed applications for three projects:

  • COSME “Clusters go International,” which supports SME internationalization into the US and China;
  • DIXHEAT, which aims to retrofit Europe’s inefficient district heating networks;
  • and SWITCH Africa Green, a project to develop a bioeconomy cluster in the Mpumalanga Province of South Africa.

The European Commission has accepted the concept note of the SWITCH Africa Green project, which will now proceed to the final stage of the application process. Decisions regarding COSME and DIXHEAT are expected in early autumn.


ICN Passport

ICN supports its members through the exclusive ICN Passport service. Concrete examples of how SMEs have used the ICN Passport service are presented below.

South Africa and Quebec (2015)

ICN Passport in South Africa Two Quebec companies took part in the South Africa International Renewable Energy Conference organized by REN21 in Cape Town in October 2015. Thanks to the ICN Passport, GreenCape provided workstations and B2B meetings during the event.

Biotech: Denmark and Norway (2016)

Danish Biotech Company currently exploring opportunities in Norway.

Hybrid wind/solar company: Sweden and South Africa 2016

A Swedish hybrid wind/solar company is now investigating market possibilities in Cape Town, South Africa.

PV Solar company : France and Germany/Italy 2016

French PV solar company has met with German/Italian representatives in Hamburg and Milan about business opportunities.

Knowledge exchange

Best practice exchange for cluster management (2012)

LE2C invited Écotech Québec for a bilateral meeting to share best practices Denis Leclerc, ICN Chair and President and CEO of Écotech Québec, attended a meeting in Milan to share expertise with Italian cluster managers. The discussion included best practices from ICN, what it means to be a member of an international cluster network and advantages of membership.

Innovation Express analysis of cleantech regions (2014)

Graz, Singapore, South Korea Together, CCC and the Danish Innovation Network for Environmental Technologies have been performing an analysis of three ICN regions – Austria (Waste, Biomass), Singapore (Water) and South Korea (Green Buildings) – which has been followed up by matchmaking delegation tours to the regions.


OECD report (2012)

ICN is mentioned in the OECD Report on Measuring the Potential of Local Green Growth: An Analysis of Greater Copenhagen, 20 December 2012.

ICLEI Global Report (2012)

ICLEI Global Report Role of Local Governments in Promoting Renewable Energy Businesses: A contribution to the green urban economy. ICN participated in a survey conducted by the University of Amsterdam for ICLEI on the topic of potential cooperation between cities and cleantech clusters. Furthermore, the ICN member from Hamburg, Germany, was used as a case study in the report