Compendium 3.2.2 Event reports
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3.2.2 Reports of inclusive entrepreneurship events
Events are listed in reverse chronological order (latest first).
* Should microfinance be gender specific?
"We need micro finance for all, but it may also require special techniques to reach key groups such as women". So Maria Nowak concluded her statement in the presidential style debate titled 'one size fits all' held at the end of the two days "Gender Equality in micro entrepreneurship and microfinance in Europe" in Madrid on 13th and 14th December 2007.
* EQUAL project is France’s ‘Social Entrepreneur 2007’
Klaus Schwab, Chairman and Founder of both the WEF and the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship, awarded its prize in France for the very first time in 2007. The winner was Anne-Karine Stocchetti, who was acknowledged for her achievements in the field of childcare – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week – developed in her Gepetto and Alice EQUAL projects.
* More microfinance – an escalator out of exclusion
The more flexible use of EU funding streams could help the microfinance sector to grow rapidly, and thus to combat problems of social inequality, a workshop at the Regional Policy Open Days in October 2007 heard.
* Structural Fund possibilities for social enterprise
Support for social enterprise at regional level can bring real dividends in terms of new jobs, social inclusion and better public services, participants at an Open Days workshop learnt in October 2007.
* Better coordination to tackle urban deprivation
'Increased flexibility of EU funding streams could increase the sustainability of efforts to tackle the growing problems of social inequalities, argued participants at a Regional Policy Open Days workshop in october 2007.
*Opening up entrepreneurship to many more people
'Communities of Practice' offer a way to take the experimental work from EQUAL forward into the next round of Structural Funds to generate inclusive entrepreneurship policies that work for all groups of society, according to one Regional Policy Open Days workshop in October 2007.
* EQUAL's Tool for Inclusive Entrepreneurship: seven more supporters
Oviedo in the North of Spain provided the venue for two days of intense discussions in October 2007 about how to extend COPIE, EQUAL's Community of Practice on Inclusive Entrepreneurship, to more Member States and Regions during the vital transition period between the old and new Structural Fund Programmes.
* Parliamentary intergroup discusses social franchising
The European Social Franchise Network, a spin-off from the EQUAL's work, was launched at the meeting of the European Parliament's interest group on the social economy in October 2007. Plans were laid to establish a new interest group specifically on this topic, and to hold a conference at the European Parliament in February 2008.
* Bridging the gap between enterprise and social policy
'Putting the heart into the Lisbon process', the EQUAL policy forum on inclusive and social entrepreneurship, held in Hanover on 4-6 June 2007, successfully brought the ideas of entrepreneurship and social inclusion together in a way not seen before. It analysed the issues in 15 workshops, structured into three phases - problems, solutions and strategies. It laid the foundations of a platform for inclusive entrepreneurship in the new Structural Funds programming period.
* Quality in the third sector
The Portuguese third sector held a conference in June 2007 to exchange experiences with two key European initiatives: the way Spanish NGOs have developed a home-grown quality standard to suit their size and value-led nature, and the way the British government enthusiastically supports social enterprise.
* Ethnic entrepreneurship: breaking the barriers
On 7th March 2007 around seventy representatives of EQUAL projects, business support organisations, Danish authorities and governmental bodies as well as ethnic groups from all over Europe met in Copenhagen with the explicit aim of "breaking down the barriers" surrounding ethnic entrepreneurship.
* Social enterprises: equal work and business opportunities
The conference in Helsinki in February 2007 focused on 4 topics: finance, growth sectors, skills and public service provision. It shared good practice in social enterprise, and brought new topics into the discussion of social enterprises and their employment potential, especially for the most disadvantaged groups in the labour market. It mainstreamed the debate to policy-makers and other stakeholders at different levels.
* Business and employment co-operatives – a launch pad for inclusive entrepreneurship
Business and employment co-operatives are the latest thing to hit business incubation. Since the first was started in 1996, a wave of some 70 has sprung up. They are present all across France, have crossed the border – there are eight in Belgium and ten in Sweden – and with EQUAL's help are now spreading further afield. A conference at the European Parliament in December 2006 has strengthened their position on the policy map.
* Social economy answers for local development
Local development was the theme of the second in the series of mainstreaming platform in EQUAL's social economy theme, held near Rome in December 2006. Cases from four countries showed how the social economy can provide an excellent response to the intractable problems of structural change, unemployment, addiction, migration and depopulation.
* Asking the right questions
The 300 people at the "Everybody's Business" conference, held in Örebro in central Sweden in November 2006 could compare and contrast ways of assessing the economic costs and benefits of social economy approaches. Standing out from the throng is the 'socio-economic reporting' method applied to social co-operatives in Sweden, which shows astounding positive social returns.
* Innovative approaches for opening up entrepreneurship to all
A workshop at the European Week of Regions and Cities/Open Days in October 2006 looked at the some of the lessons from nearly 300 EQUAL partnerships that have been working on innovative approaches to opening up entrepreneurship to all.
* France takes a deeper look at social enterprise
AVISE, France's leading support body for the social economy wants to stimulate the growth of social enterprise. At its seminar in July 1006, participants got the chance to compare contrasting models from round the world, with their varying emphasis on the individualist and collective dimensions.
* Social economy proves its worth in Warsaw
EQUAL enriched the ground for a renaissance of the social economy in Poland by showcasing some of the most successful achievements in this theme in the first round of EQUAL. Hosted in Warsaw on 10-12 May 2006, the Social Economy – a Model for Inclusion, Entrepreneurship and Local Development seminar covered four key aspects of the social economy – relations with the state, business growth, support and the users.
* Building the tools for opening up entrepreneurship to all
At the end of March 2006, 65 representatives from 12 Member States met against the historic backdrop of the first Dutch stock exchange in Amsterdam to discuss how entrepreneurship could be made more accessible for EU citizens from all backgrounds.
* Getting best value – an EU colloquium on social enterprise and public procurement
Thinking on how to deliver better public services through partnership with social enterprise has really moved on during the first round of EQUAL, a high-profile seminar held under the British presidency of the EU in October 2005 showed. Three examples from around Europe show how public authorities can get more for their money by dealing with social enterprises. http://ec.europa.eu/employment_social/equal/data/document/etg2-med-093-procurement.pdf
* Business Support for All & Access to Finance for All
The European Thematic Group on Entrepreneurship for All organised two working groups meetings in June 2004 in Brussels.
* Strengthening the Social economy
The Strengthening the Social Economy conference, held in Antwerp in May 2004, was the major event bringing together those active in the social economy in the first phase of the EQUAL Community Initiative.
* Making Entrepreneurship Accessible to All
The Entrepreneurship for All ETG held a European seminar in London on 5 & 6 June 2003 to identify good practice in opening up a life in business to women, young people, ethnic minorities and disabled people, and considered joint action for improving existing schemes and actions by using innovative solutions developed under EQUAL.
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