The City of Ostrava has been facing the so-called ‘brain drain’ in recent years, when talented and qualified people move for better salaries or opportunities to other cities in the Czech Republic, like Prague or Brno, or to other places in Europe. The firms lack skilled and qualified labour force. There is also low entrepreneurship level in the region. Universities lack more innovative researchers and innovators and talented students. It becomes very hard to go against the flow and attract highly educated people (scientists, engineers, etc.) to come over and work in here. The city wants to change that.
Attraction of the talent management therefore has thus become an essential part of the new Ostrava City Strategic Development Plan (2017-2023) as well as the creation of the friendly city environment attracting talented people. Among main priorities, there is also a strong emphasis on a better image and coherent brand management and the marketing strategy of the city and the region, and the attraction of new investments, but also a workers and young people.
The integrated Action Plan called “Ostrava – Talents in Focus!!!” is the first document of its kind in the Ostrava region. It uses the international methodology for “Talent Attraction Management” and it is structured into four phases of attracting and retaining people in the region based on 10 factors of attractiveness, by which cities and regions attract talents form around the world and identify common activities and projects to be initiated and implemented in the years to come.
The Integrated Action Plan for talent attraction has been co-designed with the local stakeholders involved in the URBACT Local Group created within the IN FOCUS project. This group of organisations and personalities emerged in the region with insight and vision in relation to the topic of the project. The group has become the foundation of an ecosystem functioning around the topic of talent attraction management in Ostrava and the region.
Following on, the working group on the same theme will be organised by the Moravian-Silesian Innovation Center for the creation of a new innovation strategy. It will seek further activities in attracting and retaining high-quality and talented people in the region and coordinating the implementation of projects from the IN FOCUS action plan. This ensures the sustainability of partnerships across local organisations and the promise that these activities will lead to the required state, which is, above all, to stop the “brain drain” process form Ostrava and the region.
The Integrated action plan and its activities are the output of the international project IN FOCUS within the URBACT network, which was held from September 2015 to May 2018 and where Ostrava was one of 10 partner cities. The project was co-funded by the European Union.