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Improvement of Methodologies and Governance of European Entrepreneurship Network (IMAGEEN)
Date du début: 31 déc. 2009, Date de fin: 30 déc. 2012 PROJET  TERMINÉ 

Business creation generates both growth and employment. Therefore, encouraging people to become entrepreneurs is a strategic goal to exploit the endogenous potential of territories and to maintain the competitiveness of EU regions. Start-up support policies are also an innovative marketing tool for EU territories because they increase their attractiveness, .Many EU regions have implemented policies which aim at increasing the number of new companies but also at improving the quality and sustainability of those companies (average survival rates in the main EU regions is about 60% 3 years after creation). Pre-start and post-start support has an impact on sustainibility but with an increasing number of would-be entrepreneurs and limited public resources, we have to maximise their efficiency. Some regions have also fostered networking between those involved in the business creation process.Implementing such networks and governance models enables technical issues and best practice to be shared, relative contribution to successful start up to be evaluated and improves the visibility of support services.The key objective of IMAGEEN is to benchmark best practice governance models and support methodologies. We will publish an Entrepreneurship Management Guide describing those best practices, analysing how they can be best transfered, and making recommendations to policy makers to improve the efficiency of entrepreneurship policy both locally and at the EU level.This will be disseminated to all local stakeholders and policy makers but also on a European level at a large-scale EU dissemination event.The IMAGEEN project will benefit from a large audience to disseminate its results and outputs since the project is supported by local policy makers and by ECER (European Cities Entrepreneurship Ranking) which each year organizes meetings for the TOP 40Entrepreneurship Cities in Europe, within the EUROCITIES network.Throughout the project, study visits will be organized to enable us to understand and describe precisely local practice in terms of governance (networking, monitoring systems) and support methodologies. Good practice and local issues will be highlighted.This work will progressively enable us to build our Guide.IMAGEEN partners will test out the transfer of best practice in their territories. An innovative entrepreneurship monitoring system will be jointly tested. One expected output of IMAGEEN is a common entrepreneurship barometer (10 permanent common indicators giving a global picture and enabling comparisons between EU Regions).IMAGEEN will build an EU-wide network dedicated to the improvement of entrepreneurship policies and tools. One expected output of IMAGEEN is a concrete network methodology to enable IMAGEEN partner network sustainability and bring in new EU partners. Achievements: After one year and a half of implementation, the IMAGEEN Project (0875R2) coordinated by the Chamber of Commerce of Lyon, France, identified 16 good practices in the 7 partner organisations. Entrepreneurship is a high priority issue for policy makers throughout the EU. The practices presented by the IMAGEEN partners fall into two main categories: support methodologies and governance. Their focus is on the promotion of entrepreneurship, ante-creation support services and financing of business projects, but also on how business support structure organise themselves in order to ensure both coherence and efficiency. The IMAGEEN project has started with a Kick-Off Meeting in Lyon in June 2010 allowing the partners to commit, discuss methodologies and approaches to develop in the project. Two practices were presented: the 'LVE Governance' network of support structures and the 'Project Diagnosis' which helps entrepreneurs identify their projects weaknesses and strengths to carry out actions. Project activities started with a study visit in Warsaw in June 2010 which focused on the good practices 'Capital of Ambitious Business', 'Innovation Potential City' and 'Mazovian Found of Credit Sureties'. The two-days visits in Gothenburg in December 2010 gave insightful information about the local contexts for entrepreneurship and about how local stakeholders work towards improving the conditions of business creation and post-creation advice. The good practices presented were 'Business Emergency', a free of charge service to rescue business from bankruptcy, 'Expedition Forward', a growth programme for SMEs and 'Mind your own Business', a one-stop agency that offers guidance and support for people who want to start up businesses. In Gothenburg, the partners agreed to reinforce the 2011 agenda in order to further enhance the exchange of good practices and work on an in-depth understanding of the practices. In 2011, the study visits took place in Munich, Birmingham, Turin and Granada. The project has brought to light 16 good practices. Building on the knowledge exchanged in IMAGEEN, the partners have developed a guide presenting all the good practices. Two in-depth meetings were organized in Lyon and Gothenburg for the interested partners. The Lead Partner and the partner responsible for the transfer of the good practices in IMAGEEN have attended a session at the OECD to exchange on the indicators developed by this institution on the basis of national and European statistics. The partners had indeed agreed to find common indicators of their action in favor of entrepreneurship and to put into perspective not only the effect of supporting structures on business creation but also to look into the macro-economic contexts of their actions and their long-term impacts on socio-economic indicators. The partners have started to find common indicators in favor of entrepreneurship and to put into perspective not only the effect of their actions as supporting structures butalso to look into the macro-economic contexts of their actions and their long-term impacts on socio-economic indicators. At the end of 2011, we have developed the opportunities of transfer of all the partners and planned the conditions of each local experimentation. Activities in 2012 include an in-depth meeting in Munich, an exchange of practices between Lyon and Gothenburg, a Steering Committee meeting, a dissemination event at the World Entrepreneurship Forum in Lyon and the Final Event of IMAGEEN. Throughout the year, the partners will experiment a good practice they chose and will analyse the benefits of this experimentation with the aim of promoting and supporting entrepreneurship. Doing so, they will involve their local stakeholders to understand the benefits of the practices and the interest of developing them on their territory to make them sustainable.



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