COPIE partners and ESF Managing Authorities from across Europe met for Technical Workshop in Brussels in Dec 2011

On December 15-16, 2011 ESF Flanders hosted a two day technical workshop in Brussels for ESF managing Authorities to provide feedback on a draft version of the ESF Manual on Access to Finance written by the German Microfinance Institute (DMI).

The aim of the Manual is to combine relevant information, considerations, experience, tools and examples relevant for the design of microfinance operations under the ESF.

Access to finance for inclusive entrepreneurship businesses: COPIE’s microfinance practices in Germany, Lithuania, Flanders, and the Czech Republic

COPIE Story of the month

This October was a crucial month for future policy action on microfinance in Europe: as part of the draft legislative package for the EU Cohesion Policy 2014-2020, the EU Commission has announced a new Programme for Social Change and Innovation which refers to microfinance and combines the three previous initiatives of Progress, EURES and the European Progress Microfinance Facility (EPMF). At the same time, the Commission published the proposals for the new ESF and ERDF regulations. Details of the current status of the EPMF are now available in the 2010 Implementation report; and finally, DG Enterprise issued a new European Code of Good Conduct for Microfinance Provision.

COPIE’s 3rd COPIE Access to Finance peer review meeting in Berlin last month, and the partners’ work on a joint Manual on Access to Finance for ESF Managing Authorities are thus extremely timely.

‘Driving Ideas into Action’ - COPIE partners share governance techniques for designing and implementing regional inclusive entrepreneurship support strategies

Driving ideas into action

‘Joint action planning’ is one of the five designated thematic areas of collaboration within the COPIE partnership. Over a period of one year, delegates from Asturias, the Czech Republic, Flanders, Germany and Wallonia met four times to share experience in governing regional entrepreneurship systems. More specifically, discussions revolved around the four themes of ‘Developing a common vision’; ‘Agreeing an evaluation strategy’; ‘Building an integrated campaign’; and ‘Planning for a legacy’. Partners shared their individual regional policies and practices, and the group jointly worked towards identifying strengths and weaknesses as well as key criteria for success.

COPIE Action Planning Flanders Baseline Report 2009

This report provides an overview on the administrative structure, the role of the ESF and the ERDF in entrepreneurship support and the level of joined up support in Flanders.
Download (pdf in English, 96 KB)


COPIE is managed by the Federal Ministry for Labour and Social Affairs in Germany through the ESF unit.

The lead partners are:

Action Planning

The main objective of this thematic group is to help policy-makers and ESF Managing Authorities to plan cohesive activities that support entrepreneurship in their region alongside their key stakeholders.