Nanotechnology is a Key Enabling Technology (KET) and an interdisciplinary area with applications covering areas such as the health, electronics, textile, automotive, food and construction sectors, among others. Through its thematic coverage and its overall operational model, which accommodates research, training of human resources and services for the economic valorization of the knowledge, one can say that INL has a similar approach as the one of clusters.
An institution like the one of INL- with its one of a kind infrastructure and equipment – has a pivotal role to play in the social and economic development. In its capacity as a provider of research activities to businesses, particularly to foreign knowledge based businesses, INL can support the internationalization businesses. INL can act as an important element in the connection/broker of businesses towards European and international clients and partners. In this sense, a major research facility like INL could convert the North-west region of the Iberian Peninsula in a major “nanotechnology cluster”.