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FINCODA: Framework for Innovation Competencies Development and Assessment

About the project

FINCODA is an Erasmus+ and European Knowledge Alliance project with a budget of €1 million. The project will be delivered in co-operation with the CARPE partners, led by TUAS (Turku University of Applied Science), with HAW (Hamburg University of Applied Sciences), HU (University of Applied Sciences, the Netherlands), MMU (Manchester Metropolitan University), and UPVLC (Universitat Politecnica de Valencia). 

This forward thinking project addresses the need to assess innovative competencies in employees and students through the development of a toolkit for behaviour assessment, available as a training e-guide. We will produce a software application for innovation competencies assessment, alongside the development of a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) to provide these tools to a wide European audience. 


What is innovation? Innovation is a process that allows for the introduction of a new product or service, new production methods, opens up new markets, identifies new suppliers, and business or management models that result in enhanced performance by, or within, the organization.

Therefore, innovation starts with the generation of new ideas and finishes with the use or commercial exploitation of the outcomes.

Innovation Competencies can be defined as those motivations, attitudes, values, characteristics, individual qualities, cognitive or practical skills that are needed for a successful innovation (Forsman, 2009). 

Universities currently have no means by which they can measure the development of innovation skills in students and thereby encourage them in this area. This means that we do not know which teaching and learning methods are effective. Companies do not have the resources and knowledge to do this. Lack of knowledge in this area means that potential economic benefits are not being realized. Through this project, we are working on building a stronger link between universities and the business community for the innovators of the future. This will lower the threshold for students starting work and ensure that companies can attract the talent that they need. 

Individuals with innovation competencies are vital if organisations want to be involved in innovation-creating activities, wish to remain competitive, or to grow their business. 

Project Partners


CARPE group of universities

The universities are partners in CARPE (Consortium on Applied Research and Professional Education), the first partnership of its kind in the field of Applied Sciences in Europe, started in 2011. CARPE aims at connecting education and research with their regions to increase social and economic value of the knowledge that they create. The partners are:

  • Hamburg University of Applied Sciences, Germany (HAW),
  • HU University of Applied Sciences Utrecht, The Netherlands (HU),
  • Turku University of Applied Sciences, Finland (TUAS),
  • Universitat Polytècnica de València, Spain (UPV),
  • Manchester Metropolitan University, United Kingdom (MMU),

Nine innovative companies from different countries are also collaborating in this project:

  • Elomatic Ltd (Finland). Leading European consulting & engineering company and a global provider of 3D Plant & Ship Design Software Cadmatic with over 700 engineering professionals.
  • Hamburger Hafen und Logistik AG (HHLA, Germany) makes annually enormous investments in both vocational and in-service training for their nearly 5000 employees.
  • Lactoprot (Germany) use outstanding innovative technologies to optimize production processes and quality in their core business. Focused on the processing of milk.
  • ECDL (The Netherlands) is a multinational operator that has profound experience working with schools, educators and commercial enterprises.
  • John Caunt Scientific Ltd. (UK) specializes in product innovation as the core activity of their nuclear radiation detection, measurement and shielding products business.
  • Carter & Corson Partnership Ltd. (UK) has over 14 years’ experience in designing, developing and implementing competency frameworks and diagnostics in recruitment, assessment, development and training. They will work closely with partner HEIs in refinement and validation of assessment tool.
  • Enterprise Europe Northwest EENNW (UK). Professional network targeted at helping SMEs, Universities & organizations to grow, be competitive & partner within Europe & third country partners.
  • Celestica (Spain) provide electronics manufacturing services by their 30 000 employees and execute their business in Centers of Excellence strategically located in North America, Europe and Asia.
  • Schneider Electric España SA creates new innovations to meet the planet’s energy challenge and make the smart grid a reality.