About Norwegian Innovation Clusters (NCE)

Norwegian Innovation Clusters is a government supported cluster program. The program aims to trigger and enhance collaborative development activities in clusters. The goal is to increase the cluster dynamics and attractiveness, the individual company's innovativeness and competetiveness. The program is organized by Innovation Norway, and supported by SIVA (The Industrial Development Corporation of Norway) and the Norwegian Research Council.

What is a NCE?
A NCE is a mature cluster with a national position: The NCE-programme is directed towards dynamic industry clusters that have established systematic collaboration and have potential for growth in national and international markets. Within their respective sectors and technology areas, the clusters are to have a national position.

13 NCE clusters in Norway
Finance Innovation recieved NCE status in November 2018.

Norway currently has 13 strong NCE clusters with companies that are establishing themselves in the global marketplace within their fields.

Read more about the programme here.

A cluster is generally defined and delimited on the basis of the participants' affiliation to:

  • The same value chain or the same knowledge/technology base

  • A geographical concentration of businesses and related functions

  • A grouping of enterprises and related knowledge communities that have a critical mass that can form the basis for triggering cooperation and dynamic relations between the participants

  • A common understanding of the cluster's importance and vision for further development.


The Norwegian Innovation Clusters programme is based on the following understanding of clusters and cluster development:

  • A cluster is a geographical concentration of enterprises and related knowledge communities linked by complementarity or a similarity of interests and needs. The enterprises can gain easier access to important production factors and ideas for and impulses to innovation through interaction and cooperation. A cluster emerges over time, on the basis of location advantages and natural development dynamics.

  •  A cluster organisation is a formal institution that is established to facilitate increased interaction and cooperation between participants in the cluster. A cluster organisation is based on an organised partnership between the participants in the cluster, often with public development agencies as important contributors.

  • A cluster development project is a targeted effort over a limited period to strengthen and accelerate the development of the cluster. This is generally achieved by means of a wide range of strategic activities aimed at strengthening the cluster's and cluster participants' competitive position. 

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