On March 8th 2023, the official opening of the "Distance LAB" project under the "Interreg Baltic Sea Region" program was held in Kokkola, Finland. The project aims to develop remote work skills and services in the Baltic Sea region.

The "Distance LAB" project was initiated on January 1, 2023, to enhance the sustainability of businesses in the Baltic Sea region by providing them with the necessary tools, skills and capabilities to operate effectively in a remote business environment. This project involves 9 partners from 6 different countries including Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, Finland and Sweden. The partners represent municipalities, business development organizations and universities, forming a diverse group of participants who can develop, evaluate and share tools with the target group - small and medium-sized enterprises. The project tasks are divided into three parts. The University of Latvia is responsible for implementing the third part successfully.

At the visit, the project partners introduced themselves and their organizations to each other. They also participated in interactive workshops. Additionally, administrative details of the project such as goals, work list, and activity planning were discussed. Three working groups were formed - innovation and communication working group, sustainability and development working group, and remote business strategy working group.

More about the project:
The challenges and opportunities related to remote work and the need to develop remote communication skills in companies are one of the most significant economic and social consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic. Organizations during the COVID-19 pandemic had to adapt to the guidelines developed by governments to mitigate the spread of the virus, and often this meant moving to digital environments and communication platforms. Nowadays, digital tools and communication platforms are necessary for companies to be competitive in the market. 

At the end of the project, the plan is to create a digital platform that combines remote business support services developed by project partners, which small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the Baltic Sea region can utilize. The project aims to increase sustainability of companies in the Baltic Sea region by providing them with the necessary tools, skills, and abilities to develop in a remote business environment. The main goals of the project are as follows:

1. Help companies to become better equipped and successful in a remote business environment by developing new and existing services and ways of working.
2. Foster internacional cooperation based on remote business development. The digital platform offers opportunities for public and private organizations to collaborate and exchange information.
3. Improve the sustainability and readiness of the Baltic Sea region to adapt to global changes and strategic guidelines. Companies will be able to identify and utilize both local and global strategies in their business planning.

Contact persons:
Dāvis Vītols, LU project expert, e-mail: davis.vitols@lu.lv , tel. (+371) 26652750

More information:
Project homepage: interreg-baltic.eu/project/distancelab/
Facebook page: www.facebook.com/distancelab
LinkedIn page: https://www.linkedin.com/company/distancelab/