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Key Terms of Sofia Knowledge City

We need a common language - key terms of Sofia Knowledge City. If we work together to create a city of knowledge, we need to understand things, in the same way, to communicate effectively and conduct a dialogue. Below, everyone interested will find short and commonly accepted definitions of 12 key terms and concepts needed to work in the cluster. D.Hristov - Vice Chairman of the Management Board of Cluster Sofia City of Knowledge

 1. Knowledge Society
Knowledge Society (KS) is a wider concept of an information society. It can be seen as a successor of a previous phase, the “information society” (IS), which in turn followed the “industrial society”. IS is so-called because of the huge flow of information that was triggered by the advent of computers, data processing systems, and communications.

In KS, knowledge, and not mere information is the most valuable asset. It is what is in the head of people (tacit knowledge) and what can materialize tangibly in the physical world, like a print, or human exchanges (explicit knowledge). It is what drives the economy in the new millennium. KS is formed as a result of the contemporary societal change pushed by technological innovation and institutional transformation, which is not only about technological innovations, but also about human beings, their personal growth and their individual creativity, experience, and participation in the generation of knowledge. The primary role of cities in a knowledge society is to ensure that their knowledge sources are passed on and advanced by each generation. In such a society main of the prosperity and well-being of its people came from the creation, sharing, and use of knowledge.

2. Knowledge-Economy
Knowledge-Economy (KE) is an economy that is characterized by the recognition of knowledge as a source of competitiveness, the increasing importance of science, research, technology, and innovation in knowledge creation, and the use of computers and the Internet to generate, share, and apply knowledge. KE is a new state of the global economy, which in recent decades has been transformed by new Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs). It is characterized by massive changes caused by the incorporation of knowledge into economic activity. Traditional economic factors such as monetary capital, physical labor, and raw material, are becoming less important in comparison to the capability of adding value through knowledge development, improvement, and innovation. КЕ refers to how society and economies are changing their reliance from the labor and manufacturing of products or goods to an economy that is more reliant on the production and reengineering of information into knowledge. Hence, society and the economy are being transformed from a “physical-based” labor force to a “knowledge-based” one. The knowledge economy is centralized on how digital technologies are transforming the way humans work, think, and act.

3. Knowledge Hub
Knowledge Hub (KH) is a region with an ensemble of knowledge-intensive organizations located in both the public and private sectors. KH has state-of-the-art connectivity and is networked with industries and R&D institutions in an urban territory. The focus of KH is on the development of world-class human capital in the knowledge-intensive areas of science and technology relevant to the knowledge industry and knowledge-based services in addition to the growth of world-class relevant research and development. It is thus, the nucleus of both the cultivation of new knowledge as well as the center for the transformation of knowledge into prosperity through knowledge enterprise development.

4. Knowledge cluster
A knowledge cluster (K-Cluster) is a local innovation system organized around universities, research institutions, and firms which intend and has the organizational capability to drive innovations and create new industries. K- Cluster is an agglomeration of organizations that are production-oriented. Its production is primarily directed to knowledge as output or input. K-Cluster is a central place within an epistemic landscape, i.e. in a wider structure of knowledge production and dissemination. Knowledge clusters usually appear within the knowledge hubs. Examples for organizations in knowledge clusters are universities and colleges, research institutions, think tanks, government research agencies, and knowledge-intensive firms. In some countries at the center of K-Cluster is a unique R&D topic for the area and core research institutions (like universities, scientific institutes) with high research potential. It also involves the participation of corporations and other groups from both inside and outside the region. More specifically, K-Cluster forms human networks and joint research organizations to promote beneficial feedback between the "seeds" of innovative technology possessed by public research organizations and other groups forming the core, and corporate needs for practicality. This creates a chain reaction of technical innovation, which eventually results in the creation of new industries (or expansion of current industries).

5. Knowledge-Based Development
Knowledge-Based Development (KBD) is a powerful strategy for economic growth and the post-industrial development of cities and nations to participate in the knowledge economy. It is a strategic management approach, applicable to purposeful human organizations in general (F. Carillo, 2002). KBD has two purposes: The first one is it is a strategy that codifies technical knowledge for the innovation of products and services, market knowledge for understanding changes in consumer choices and tastes, financial knowledge to measure the inputs and outputs of production processes, and human knowledge in the form of skills and creativity, within an economic model. The later one is that it indicates the intention to increase the skills and knowledge of people as a means for individual and social development. KBD policies include: developing and adopting the state of art ICTs, distributing instrumental capital, developing human capital, and developing capital systems. Finally, KBD is a humanistic perspective and development process that uses a variety of knowledge management systems and approaches based on a shared vision and value sets to capture new opportunities, advance the economy and society, compete successfully in the sustainable and global knowledge economy and achieve progress in the evolution of human civilization.

6. Knowledge-Based Urban Development
Knowledge-Based Urban Development (KBUD) is the new development paradigm of the knowledge economy era that aims to bring economic prosperity, environmental sustainability, a just socio-spatial order, and good governance to cities and produces a city purposefully designed to encourage the production and circulation of knowledge in an environmentally conserved, economically secure, socially just and well-governed human setting, a knowledge city. KBUD is a knowledge-intensive urban planning and development approach to nourish the transformation and renewal of cities into knowledge cities.

7. Sustainable Urban Development
Sustainable Urban Development (SUD) is an approach targeted on improving the quality of life in a city, including ecological, cultural, political, institutional, social and economic components without leaving a burden, e.g., the result of reduced natural capital and excessive local debt, on the future generations - and thus forming the sustainable city.

8. Digital City
Digital City (DC) is a concept that is aimed at building an arena in which people in regional communities can interact and share knowledge, experience, and mutual interests. It is an open, complex, and adaptive system based on computer network and urban information resources, which form a virtual digital space for a city. It creates an information service marketplace and information resource deployment center. So, DC integrates urban information (both achievable and real-time) and creates public spaces in the internet for people living or visiting the city.
There are several important characteristics of DC: 1. DC has no physical boundaries - land in DC is mainly considered as a virtual asset, that is, a virtual representation of the city, such as network community, networked society, virtual space, and so on, in which people can share data, information and knowledge each other; 2. the infrastructures are only represented by ICT, especially Internet and technologies such as the Internet of Things, cloud and ubiquitous computing, Web 2.0, and so on; 3. people are considered from two points of view: enablers, who are able to stimulate the DC implementation, and recipients who are able to use the e-services and to gain real benefits from them; 4. its main purpose is to improve the relationship among citizens and between citizens and Public Administration through the network and e-services supply.

9. Smart City
In the wider aspect, Smart City (SC) is an urban strategy based on knowledge aimed at improving the quality of life of citizens. SC is a well-defined geographic territory in which high technology, such as ICT, mobile communications, logistics, power generation, modern energy networks, water recycling, etc. cooperate to create benefits for citizens in terms of well-being, inclusion and participation, quality of the environment and smart development. SC is an innovative digital city that uses technologies to improve the quality of life, efficiency of urban operations and services, and competitiveness while ensuring that it meets the needs of present and future generations in terms of economic, social, and environmental aspects. SC is a city well performing in a forward-looking way in the following six smart characteristics, built on the ‘smart’ combination of endowments and activities of self-decisive, independent and aware citizens: economy, people, governance, mobility, environment, and living. There are several important characteristics of one SC, which differ from those of a digital city: 1. considered as land corresponding to the administrative boundaries of the city; 2. includes all types of physical infrastructure such as streets, bridges, buildings, broadband services, railways, etc. as well as virtual ones as some elements of ICT (software and telecommunication). All innovative technologies are considered useful for building a better urban space; 3. people are all residents and guests of the city who must have "smart culture" and virtuous behavior in the conditions of the SC; 4. governmental authorities in SC are mainly local and central public administrations and international institutions (for example the European Union), working to improve the sustainability and quality of life of citizens.

10. Knowledge City
A Knowledge City (KC) is the term used to describe a Knowledge-Based Development strategy that has a target to enhance and continuously support the knowledge management processes that take place in an urban area. This is achieved through the continuous interactions of knowledge agents (universities, research institutes, companies, citizens, etc.) among them as well as with the knowledge agents of other cities, so as knowledge continuously flows. The successful formulation of the strategy, the shaping of a coherent vision, the advanced communication networks, the city’s infrastructures, and the citizen’s education level continuously support these interactions KC is a city that searches for the creation of value in all its areas and develops high standards of life, cultural support, and economic development, among other aspects including a higher level of income, education, training, and research, at the same time it is a regional knowledge economy driven city with high value-added exports created through research, technology, and brainpower and purposefully designed to encourage the nurturing of knowledge. KC is the culmination and synthesis and integration of the creative city and the science city where knowledge, arts and sciences become unified in a uniquely human 21st-century urban ecology.

11. Knowledge Park

Knowledge Park (KP) is a modern concept for accelerating regional economic development through cultivating an entrepreneurial environment based on the triple helix paradigm. KP usually means a well defined urban solution, innovative space that creates a friendly environment for open innovation. KP is typically developed in association with universities and R&D organizations as a mechanism for facilitating collaborative research and/or technology transfer. It accelerates the expansion of the innovative and knowledge-intensive SMEs by providing easy access to resources, including business services, training and access to institutional research and is often focused on technology deployment and rapid commercialization. All around the world, Knowledge Parks are emerging in the quest for sustainable growth and economic development for cities, regions, countries, and enterprises. The establishment of a KP in a city can be a good approach to stimulate and accelerate the process of transforming one traditional city to a knowledge city. KP differs from Science parks and Technology parks. With a number of positive exceptions, most technology parks have achieved modest results in stimulating R&D for business, and science parks are more focused on R&D activities and less for support of business development.

12. Sofia Knowledge City

Sofia is the capital of Bulgaria that is historically developed as a knowledge hub in the country with its deep-rooted tradition of quantity and quality education and research in science and technology. There is a critical mass of entrepreneurial and innovative culture and rising availability of banking, venture and seed capital, favorable conditions for young companies, and a relatively competitive, sophisticated market, eager to accept new products and technologies. This makes it reasonable and realistic to develop Sofia Knowledge City (SKC). SKC is a term (brand, activity) that brings together the following three independent but related components:

  1. concept and initiative for joint actions aimed at transforming the capital into a knowledge city by creating conditions for more effective use of already accumulated in organizations, business and institutions of the city knowledge, know-how and science infrastructure, and to stimulate creating new one;
  2. an emerging knowledge cluster, set-up as a non-governmental organization, uniting universities, research and development organizations and knowledge-intensive enterprises for the realization of projects in support of the transformation process of Sofia into a knowledge city; the core of the cluster is a group of value-added enterprises - manufacturers and suppliers of information technology products and services (IT infrastructure, software solutions, database, information systems, etc.) and in the field of business and information services, publishing, radio, television, creative and re-creative industries, etc.);
  3. an instrument for the realization of the Innovation Strategy for Smart Specialization of Sofia and an innovative platform for supporting the process of elaborating a general vision for the economic and urban development of the city.

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