Inclusive Entrepreneurship in Europe - COPIE e-news 02/2011

New COPIE self-learning guide for business advisors in Galicia

Suggesting new tools for inclusive entrepreneurship advice is a key element of COPIE’s work on Quality Management. This month, our COPIE partner Galicia has published and distributed a new self-learning guide among the business advisor community in Galicia. The structure of the guide originates from the ACBBA/SFEDI self study manual for Community-based business advisors developed in the UK. It was transferred and adapted to the Galician context as part of the thematic group’s activities. The new guide offers advisors in Galicia a series of tools to take charge of their own professional development, and to gain a comprehensive understanding of the skills that are required for delivering high-quality inclusive entrepreneurship support. Case studies from Galician entrepreneurs provide a unique opportunity to learn about what type of advice has benefitted them and what clients generally look for in terms of assistance.

COPIE partners and experts will present this tool as part of the overall COPIE Toolkit to a broader audience at the COPIE Policy Forum in March 2012.

COPIE partners work on a template for a regional business support resource map

The aim of the COPIE Thematic Group on Integrated Business Support is to help public institutions to identify gaps or overlaps in their current public business service infrastructure. By streamlining existing support provision in the pre-start up, start-up and post-start-up phase, public authorities can significantly improve the effectiveness and sustainability of the system. As a key outcome of the work in this area, COPIE partners will provide a template for developing a regional or national Resource Map. The Resource Map clarifies roles of organisations and services provided, and it displays specificities of support schemes as well as their geographical spread. As a first step towards implementation, COPIE partners in Galicia and in the Czech Republic have conducted an online survey among support providers in their respective region and country. The group is currently evaluating the responses and will publish more information about the results in the upcoming weeks.

Our new COPIE Story of the Month: 'Access to finance for inclusive entrepreneurship businesses: COPIE’s microfinance practices in Germany, Lithuania, Flanders, and the Czech Republic'

Read more about COPIE’s work in the Thematic Group on Access to Finance in our current Story of the Month featured article here.

Referring to some of the recent developments in the European  microfinance policy sector, the article describes microfinance schemes  financed by the European Structural Funds in Germany, Lithuania and Flanders.

Manual for COPIE‘s European Tool now available in English

In the first edition of our COPIE newsletter last month, we briefly referred to the new Manual for implementing COPIE’s European Tool. We are pleased to announce that an English version of this Manual is now available for download here.

The European Tool is standard methodology to assess the inclusiveness of local or regional entrepreneurship support systems by matching up the three perspectives of decision-makers, advisors and entrepreneurs. It was used in 17 European regions and cities so far. If you are interested in applying the tool and require more information, please contact our COPIE expert Norbert Kunz.

Save the date: 4th and final COPIE Access to Finance Peer Review on December 15-16, 2011

In line with agenda of COPIE’s Thematic Group on Access to Finance, the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs of the Czech Republic is organizing a two day peer review event on 15 and 16 December 2011 in Prague.
The event will offer a platform for discussion and exchange of ideas between policy-makers, researchers and practitioners on how member states of the European Union can stimulate access to finance and what role the ESF can play in this. This exchange will give feedback to decision- makers and suggest key aspects for ESF support in the future operational programs. Participants will learn about finance schemes in the Czech Republic and hear more on the COPIE Manual on Access to Finance.

EU Commission published new report on 'Mapping of teachers' preparation for entrepreneurship education'

This month, the EU‘s DG Education and Culture has published the results of a comparative study on teachers‘ preparation for entrepreneurship education in Europe. The ten countries that were selected for the study are Austria, Belgium (Flanders only), Finland, Hungary, Netherlands, Portugal, Sweden, the UK (Scotland only), Croatia and Norway.
While a high level of activity in initial teacher education was found in the two countries of Finland and Norway, entrepreneurship education still seems to be a quite uncommon topic in teacher education overall.
To seek inspiration and exchange from the Finnish case study, COPIE partners conducted a study trip to Finland as part of the activities of the Thematic Working Group on Entrepreneurship Education earlier this year. The report from this visit can be found here.

COPIE participates at event on 'With ESF and ERDF to entrepreneurship – Brandenburg: role model for Europe, funding of entrepreneurship in EER regions' on Nov 21, 2011 in Brussels

The Federal state of Brandenburg has successfully funded entrepreneurship through the ESF and ERDF for more than ten years. Acknowledging this initiative, in addition to Helsinki and Barcelona, the European Commission and the Committee of regions have awarded Brandenburg with the prestigious 'European Entrepreneur Region Award' (EER) 2011. In a high-level event in Brussels on November 21, 2011, the Federal State of Brandenburg will share its experience with other regions in Europe as Brandenburg’s approach may become interesting in the upcoming funding period 2014 -2020. COPIE has been invited to share the results of the partnership and present a transnational perspective on future ESF and ERDF entrepreneurship support.