European regions exchange and develop regional policies in SME development, focussing on the main themes of promoting entrepreneurship and providing infrastructure for innovation.
Small and medium sized enterprises (SME) make an important contribution to regional economic performance by creating jobs, supporting innovation and delivering economic growth. MINI EUROPE aims to exchange and develop regional policies in SME development, focussing on the main themes of promoting entrepreneurship and providing infrastructure for innovation to SMEs.
The key to successful SME development are the entrepreneurs. MINI EUROPE will share and develop regional policy instruments to get more people involved in entrepreneurship. In this context MINI EUROPE will address in particular the issues of increasing involvement of under-represented groups (like minorities, disabled people, women) in entrepreneurship and developing regional financial infrastructures (e.g. seed capital, participation funds) to support regional entrepreneurs.
MINI EUROPE will also work on regional instruments to strengthen regional infrastructures to support SMEs in innovation (e.g. information, services, advice, coaching, networking). A specific issue MINI EUROPE will deal with in this context is enhancing cooperation and knowledge exchange between SMEs and knowledge institutes. Most of the activities in this project will be developed through networking.
MINI EUROPE is initiated by regional politicians sharing the vision that strengthening regional SME development requires an integrated approach built on the interrelated factors. By bringing together and capitalising their methods and experiences, all partners can strongly improve their performance in this field.
MINI EUROPE will document existing good practice in SME development in the partner regions and from relevant Interreg projects in a Mini Europe good practice catalogue (update February 2010). The partners will then engage in bilateral experience transfers, matching a partner ‘exporting’ a specific good practise with a partner ‘importing’ it. After thorough preparation a delegation of the exporting region will visit the importing region to train and assist local staff directly in implementing the good practise. As each partner has successful tools to offer, as well as development needs related to the project themes, all of them will both export and import two tools.
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