More than 300 regional and local authorities – including towns, cities, regions and communities as well as public-private partnerships between public authorities and entrepreneurs, educational programmes and business organisations – competed in the national round of the 2007 Awards. Participating countries could select up to two candidates for the European competition. The final 48 nominees represented a wide variety of projects that are successful in facilitating business and supporting entrepreneurship across Europe. They competed in one of the six categories of the European Enterprise Awards:
Entrepreneurial Trailblazer: actions that promote an entrepreneurial culture and mindset.
Enterprise Support: innovative policies that promote enterprise and attract investment, particularly in disadvantaged areas.
Red Tape Reduction: measures to simplify administrative procedures for businesses, in particular for start-ups.
Investment in People: initiatives to improve entrepreneurship education and training.
Responsible Entrepreneurship: corporate social responsibility and sustainable business practices.
The European Jury also presented the Jury’s Grand prize to the entry that it considered the most creative and inspiring entrepreneurship initiative in Europe.
And as we are interested in people at We SeePeople, here are the People winners; (The other winners and contest information could be found at the bottom of this article.
Investment in People Award
Cap’Ten, ICHEC-PME, Bruxelles, Belgium
Cap’Ten stimulates entrepreneurship in primary school children aged 10 to 12 using resources that sharpen their creativity, independence, openness, responsibility and communications skills. Participants pick their own challenge and exploit their personal talents with the support of a kit of project management tools specially adapted to their age.
A particular objective is to change the mindset in the EU Member State with the least number of people wanting to set up their own companies. Moreover, the project offers a real methodology rather than just a ‘book of instructions’.
Since the launch of the project in 2004, more than 30 000 pupils in the French Community in Belgium have been involved – over a quarter of the age category. The scheme was tested in the Flemish region of Belgium in the 2006/2007 school year and will be available on a large scale in Dutch from autumn 2007. Cap’Ten will also be introduced in France with a test phase in Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur and Ile-de-France in collaboration with local partner ‘Soyons curieux’.
More information about Cap’Ten may be found at:
or contact: Laurence Lievens, Cap’Ten project manager – phone: +32 2 739 38 69; fax: +32 2 739 38 63; e-mail: email@example.com
Eigen Werk, (Work for Yourself), Amsterdam, Netherlands
The Dutch Department of Work and Income, Centre for Work and Income and Employee Insurance Agency joined forces to overcome prejudice against older workers. Eigen Werk (Work for Yourself) focuses on the unemployed aged 40/45+ in and around Amsterdam to provide support and guidance in independent entrepreneurship. It concentrates particularly on those considering setting up a one-man business. In the first 18 months, 390 candidates took part in the programme, and 130 have successfully started their own businesses or have found a job, with a drop-out rate of less than 10%.
Eigen Werk offers a short introductory programme and candidates then propose their business plans. Intensive coaching is provided, but the candidates do the work themselves. During the programme, they are required to seek out their first real commissions, and receive training in networking. All candidates also receive knowledge vouchers to exchange for the services of external experts.
The Dutch Ministry of Social Affairs has recognised the unique approach and good results of Eigen Werk by granting it ‘Good Practice’ status on the basis of a study of initiatives aimed at getting older people back into employment. The methodology has already been extended elsewhere in the Netherlands, and an Eigen Werk subsidiary has been opened in Alkmaar and Hoorn.
More information about this project may be found at:
or contact: Bartho Boer, DWI Communication Manager – phone: +31 20-3464791;
European Enterprise Awards 2007