Slovakia

Knowledge base of a dynamic region

The Bratislava and Trnava Regions provide the fulcrum of science and research in Slovakia. Eight of the country’s 20 public universities as well as the overwhelming majority of non-university research institutions are situated in the capital and its region. The most important universities include Comenius University, the Slovak University of Technology, the University of Economics and the Slovak Medical University (all in Bratislava) as well as (in Trnava) the University of St. Cyril and Method and the University of Trnava. The Slovak Academy of Sciences and most of its institutes are likewise domiciled in Bratislava.

Despite such favourable conditions for the emergence of an efficient knowledge-based regional economy, challenges still exist with regard to strategic support from the national government, the legal framework and available funding to improve the research infrastructure. Above all, a gradual strengthening of the innovation infrastructure is of decisive importance for the region. By supporting emerging innovation-oriented enterprises, technology centres and science and technology parks play a key role in this process. Moreover, science and technology parks are among the most useful instruments for attracting international technology-oriented enterprises to the region.

In this connection, a great opportunity is offered by the Bratislava-Vajnory science and technology park implemented by the investment group CEPIT. The first construction stage of this project is close to completion but requires continued support by the authorities so as to ensure further infrastructure development and attract more investors. Equal importance must be assigned to the West Slovakian automotive cluster set up in 2007 and located in the Trnava Region. Through the safeguarding of human resources, technology transfer, innovation processes and supply chains, a high-level, modern basis for the automotive industry is to be built by 2012. The cluster entails advantages for the development of the region itself and its universities, enterprises and public administration. Its main players are the City of Trnava, the Self-governing Region Trnava, SARIO (Slovak Investment and Trade Development Agency), the University of St. Cyril and Method of Trnava, a technical-vocational college and well as numerous small and medium-sized enterprises.