Benchmarking of Management Excellence in The Agro-Industrial Sector in The Northwest Region of Romania

  • Florina DEIAC Faculty of Horticulture and Business in Rural Development, University of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine of Cluj-Napoca, 3–5 Mănăștur Street, 400372 Cluj-Napoca, Romania
  • Lucian C. MAIER Hygia- Consult SRL, Regional Center of Excellence for Creative Industries, Tiberiu Popoviciu street no 2-4 floor 1, CREIC building, Cluj-Napoca 400647
  • Felix Horațiu ARION Agro-Food-Ind Napoca Cluster Association (AgroTransilvania Cluster), 407039 Dezmir, Apahida, Cluj County
Keywords: European policy, clustering strategy, benchmarking, innovation


Industrial clusters nowadays represent a large part of the growth of SMEs (companies), jobs, and specialized regions. Regional growth is influenced by innovative clusters, which facilitate research, cost reduction, and new technical application. Clusters in the IT industry, renewable energy, furniture and agro-industry are popular in Romania's Northwest Region, with Cluj-Napoca being as the capital of gold clusters. The aim of the study was to examine the clustering strategy in Romania's northwestern region, Transylvanian Furniture Cluster, IT Transylvania Cluster, AgroTransilvania Cluster and TREC Transylvania Energy Cluster from the perspective of the Gold Label assessment. The study reveals that the four gold certified clusters share the following characteristics: a formal strategy, a specific strategy that addresses internationalization, innovation, research, development, and know-how, services primarily directed at members, international and transnational collaboration with multiple countries, and national and international funding support programs. The proposed recommendations and activities can contribute to improve each cluster's strategy.