It's all about the power of innovation. We are well into the new year, using insights and highlights from last year as a guide for what we will focus on more in 2024.

While last year was marked by high levels of activity, it was also a year of construction and development. We have streamlined the organisation, with 5 new members joining, bringing the Nordic Edge team to a total of 12 people.

The mission remains unchanged. We aim to create innovative strength for our members. Our activities and priorities are centred around paving the way for innovation and innovators. Continued growth in membership indicates that more and more people recognise the value of cluster communities and the benefits of collaborating on innovation, networking, and competence development.

Teampicture Annual Report

Eight key takeaways from 2023:

  • Member satisfaction, as per the survey, has increased to 70 points. While there is still room for improvement, the trend is positive, and we have clear priorities that will further elevate our standing.


  • In direct response to member needs, we undertook the strongest international initiative in our history. Alongside cluster members, we were present at various international events across Europe, supporting their international growth ambitions.


  • Expanding our European presence by elevating, together with our collaborative partners, the level of activity in EU-projects such as NEB-STAR, EDIH Oceanopolis, and Hack The Climate.


  • In the first year of Innoasis, as the Hub for Urban Innovation, we, along with our members and partners, delivered 155 events, including workshops, conferences, and debates.


  • We developed and launched our first prototype of an innovation support toolbox.


  • A key account manager (KAM) role has been introduced, bringing us closer to members and enhancing our ability to understand their needs and innovation challenges.


  • In August, we launched a new innovation cluster focusing on agritech (agricultural technology).


  • We amplified our societal voice to challenge policies, frameworks, and demand-side knowledge.
Network annual report



Also in 2023, practical networking was high on our priority list. Getting to know new people who possess knowledge you don’t, and who can help you get where you need to go is one of the main reasons for being part of an innovation cluster. Network effects are created somewhat like a membership at a gym. Those who attend training sessions gain bigger muscles. Our role is to be the intermediary that ensures the good connections actually happen. We function a bit like an analog dating algorithm when ensuring good matches. It doesn’t always end in marriage, but it usually turns out to be both fun and quite useful.

NFD Annual Report
International Annual Report

The Nordic Edge Growth Tour 2023 aimed to strengthen the foundation for the export of smart city solutions while putting a smarter and greener future on the map. The goal was to facilitate activities that provided members access to knowledge, connections, and opportunities in new markets. The international presence was categorized with various sub-goals, all contributing to the overarching objective of expanding the Nordic Edge ecosystem and showcasing smart solutions to accelerate the journey towards a smarter and greener future. Sub-goals included strengthened partnerships across borders, increased exposure and presence for members, and extended access to international capital.

These activities aimed to expose solutions addressing urban challenges to an international audience. By being present at key smart city forums, companies had the opportunity to meet potential customers and collaborators. Additionally, they could gain new insights and share knowledge with decision-makers, technology enthusiasts, entrepreneurs, startups, and investors committed to sustainability and urban development.

Through the Growth Tour 2023:

  • 35 companies joined us at one or more relevant forums.
  • Nordic Edge visited 10 countries with its members.
    • Sweden – How to Enter Sweden
    • Denmark – How to Enter Denmark
    • Germany – Global Growth Smart Societies
    • Belgium – European Startup Prize for Mobility
    • UK – The Crown Prince’s delegation
    • Spain – SCEWC Barcelona
    • Finland – Tampere smart city week
    • Estland – WDBE 
    • Poland – Hack The Climate
    • Netherlands – NEB-STAR
  • We had a presence at 20+ forums.
  • 37 members pitched to investors at a forum facilitated by Nordic Edge.
    • Several of them successfully raised capital in an extremely challenging market.
  • We facilitated 100+ connections between member companies and investors, customers, partners, etc.
Infographic 2

In 2023, we built networks in several ways:

• We got closer to individual members, gained better knowledge of their needs, and made more good direct connections.

• We became a part of Urban Hub Europe, opening the door for our members to a new large European network

• In the first three months alone, two cluster gatherings have been conducted in the brand-new agritech cluster, with a focus on identifying innovation challenges, building community, and finding prospects for cooporation

• We conducted more than 150 professional and social gatherings.

• We built new relationships with environments and organizations both in Norway and beyond the country’s borders.

• Growth Tour – our international programme with participation in five different locations is both a commercial initiative on behalf of our members and a strong networking arena for those who participate.

• Linking activities between students and companies – “Join a start-up” and “Find your thesis.”




New knowledge is to innovation, what charging is to your electric car. Progress stops without replenishment. Knowledge dissemination from our side in 2023 focused on creating value in three main areas:

1. Knowledge about innovation and service design as a method and working form.

2. Practical professional knowledge on topics such as digitalization, AI, business models, and scaling.

3. Knowledge sharing in collaborative projects.



Workshop Annual Report

We believe in open innovation as a method and facilitate it in practice. This means that people meet and share knowledge. Knowledge transfer may happen most effectively in our many collaborative projects. The reason this is particularly efficient is that knowledge sharing is based on the very specific needs among our members and partners.

Community Annual Report

These are glimpses of knowledge activities:

• Innovation breakfast with UiS in collaboration with Professor Tatiana Lakovleva, Professor of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management.

• AI gathering/EDIH.

• Service design lecture with Hanne Ersdal, lecturer at UiS in Service Design.

• In collaboration with Rogaland County Municipality, we have developed the Rogaland Model as a method for site and business development. In 2023, this methodology has been applied to the following municipalities: Strand, Suldal, Sauda, Hjelmeland, Eigersund, Sokndal, Flekkefjord, Lund and Bjerkreim.

• Scaling and hiring with Maria Heggen from Bjørnson Organizational Psychologists.

Visibility annual report


In 2023, we welcomed Solveig and Andreas on board, our two new communication resources. They have actively worked to create visibility on behalf of our members and collaborative projects across all our social media platforms, website, and through member communication and newsletters to a national and international network. We now reach thousands of innovation and digitalization enthusiasts in various channels with our updates on smarter and more sustainable cities and societies.

In addition to creating visibility around collaborative projects, we have utilized all our communication channels to amplify messages and good news shared by our members. Increased visibility is a positive side effect of cluster membership.



Here are some of our visibility statistics from 2023:

• Nearly 5,000 followers on LinkedIn

• Reached 44,000 with updates on Facebook and Instagram

• 165 mentions in national media

• Several debate panels in Arendal during Arendalsuka

• Presence at exhibitions/conferences like SLUSH, Tech BBQ, Oslo Innovation Week, Innoasis Week

Collage Annual report
Innoasis Annual report



Innoasis is Norway’s hub for urban innovation and the home of Nordic Edge. Currently, 200 people from around 30 companies work in the building, including start-ups, academia, the Smart City department of Stavanger Municipality, capital environments, and larger companies. The Nordic Edge co-working space is home to 70 people. We have facilitated and organised numerous activities to support companies in Nordic Edge, Innoasis, and the urban innovation field in the Nordic region. In total, around 100 events have been conducted in the building during the year.



Innoasis Community Annual Report

Our main activities in Innoasis in 2023:

  • To clarify Innoasis and its services, a new website has been developed, actively promoting the activities, purpose, and contributions throughout the year.


  • Services in the toolbox aimed at facilitating transformation and economic development have been developed and launched.


  • The building has evolved as a testbed and has been promoted as a “Living Lab,” where three solutions were tested during the year.


  • The establishment of a 5G Lab, in collaboration with Lyse/Ice, is progressing in terms of conceptualization, physical design, and financing. The lab is expected to open in the new year.
Innoasis Urban Energy Annual Report
  • We hosted the ‘Join a Start-Up Night’, serving as a meeting place for start-ups seeking talent and talents looking for relevant jobs. The 2023 event featured 10 start-ups and 80 talents.


  • In May 2023, we organised Innoasis Week, consisting of 10 events over three days, showcasing different aspects of Innoasis and Nordic Edge, reaching various target groups. Approximately 450 people participated in the events during Innoasis Week.


  • UiS launched Innoasis Urban Energy Lab, a collaboration platform and showroom for developing future renewable and energy-efficient energy systems.
Innoasis breakfast Annual Report

Innovation Breakfast celebrated Innoasis’ 1st anniversary with a breakfast event, where companies and stakeholders from the region shared their innovation journeys and future plans. A debate on the region’s innovation journey was led by Nordic Edge. The event aimed to position Innoasis as a unifying environment where local and regional forces converge to strengthen Smart City development.

Growth capital Annual Report

Growth capital


Access to growth capital and investor expertise is a key ingredient in turning an idea into a solution or service that resonates with real customers. One of our primary innovation priorities in recent years has been to build an international investor network, now comprising approximately 100 investors with whom we have regular contact.

How to enter Annual Report
Infographic 3

Nordic Fund Day was established as a Nordic concept in 2021 and has since been held several times. It connects Nordic companies seeking capital with curious investors looking for investment opportunities and collaboration with other investors.

In 2023, members of our innovation clusters collectively secured 135+ million in investment capital and the financial network expanded with 30+ new venture capitalists.

. Our main activities and arenas in growth capital in 2023 were:

  • Nordic Fund Day Stavanger
  • Nordic Fund Day Berlin
  • Startup Extreme
  • Katapult Future Fest
  • TechBBQ
  • Oslo Innovation Week
  • European Startup Prize for mobility
Community voice annual report

Community voice


Innovation work mainly involves forging new paths where others have not tread. As providers of new ideas and solutions, our cluster members often encounter outdated regulations, wrong incentives, old habits, and low buyer competence. For start-ups, these are especially challenging obstacles to tackle alone.

Collage 2 annual report

In 2023, we made advocacy a more explicit part of our role to try to pave the way for innovation and innovators. Some of our societal voice activities included:

  • Hosting 9 events during Arendals Uka either alone or with partners, focusing on mobility, agricultural technology, and digitization.


  • Op-eds in newspapers and business magazines.


  • Debates on the role of “free” as an innovation factor


  • Ongoing direct contact with politicians at all levels and industry organisations to build knowledge about obstacles limiting innovation.


  • Using relevant societal themes to create panel debates at Innoasis – “Bus, Boat, and Train – How Smart is Free?” Nordic Edge and Stavanger Aftenblad welcomed participants to address the questions in an engaging debate among relevant stakeholders, including several cluster members.
Debate Annual Report

Nordic Edge Expo 2024

By 2050, 70% of the world’s population will live in cities. Urban challenges are imminent and demand purposeful effort from innovative and dedicated minds. As we, at Nordic Edge, now organize the Expo for the 9th time with the theme “Be the Change,” we do so because we genuinely believe that change is possible when a broad spectrum of important societal voices gathers, and the right tools becomes available. 2023 marked the launch of this year’s main event at Nordic Edge, and we are done with discussing the need for change; now is the time to make things happen.

Nordic Edge Expo 2024 will provide us with the right tools and network! You can be a part of the change – as an inventor, investor, leader, employee, or private individual. So save the date 7th – 8th of May in Stavanger, and as a bonus you now get a Early Bird price on the tickets in January.

“If you want to go fast, go alone; if you want to go far, go together.”


If you are curious about cluster membership and a place in our innovation community at Innoasis, we would be happy to have a conversation. Contact us for a discussion.


Trygve A. Meyer

Head of Smart City Cluster

+47 959 37 837


Gunnar Crawford

Head of Agritech Cluster

+47 934 88 841


Anette Engh Bakke

Business Developer

+47 416 17 190


Steinar Meling

Senior Project Manager

+47 480 75 767

Emilie Annual Report

Emilie Martinsen Christensen

Funding & Internationalisation Manager

+47 916 17 519

Randi Annual Report

Randi Augenstein

Head of Innoasis

+47 942 76 994