The Science and Technology Park in Heraklion, in Crete: The Science and Technology Park of Crete (STEP-C) was established to commercially exploit the technology produced by research institutes and academic circles and forms one of seven such parks across Greece. By providing an interface between the scientific community and the outside world, the park facilitates development in this field. Its main objectives are technology transfer, product and service promotion, educational and business services for executives and entrepreneurs and regional development.
Established in 1993, STEP-C is located in Heraklion, the capital and largest city of Crete, close to internationally-recognized research and educational centers. It had an initial capital of 40 million dollars, provided by prominent members of the Foundation for Research and Technology-Hellas (FORTH), with financial support from the European Union and the Greek government.
Today, it collaborates with 25 public and private sector companies located on its premises, on full and associate memberships. These companies, along with the contribution of the University of Crete alumni, covering Information Technology, Biotechnology, Environmental Technology, Microelectronics, and Laser Applications, Biomedical Technology and Services.
STEP-C has developed the first 'Resort Office' prototype in Europe, a technologically updated work environment that improves creativity and commitment with opportunities for productive work and relaxation. Business services offered by STEP-C include Professional incubation with the STEP-C Incubator, the Centre of Technology Transfer (CCT), an Education Centre for the business community, Innovation Management Support, Protection of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR), Implementation of Regional, National and European Projects in R&T and regional innovation.
Educational facilities include distance learning methods and a flexible system, with access to printed training material and publications, and encouraging participation in training programs and events. The park attracts emerging businesses, particularly in environmental fields, like wind power. Covering 2,000 m2, it will be extended by 30 acres owned by the Research Centre of Crete.