Issue N° 132 - May 2015
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Updates on the life of the INSME Network

The 11th INSME Annual Meeting is now!

Time has come for the INSME Community to meet and discuss collaboration potential during the 11th INSME Annual Meeting taking place from the 26th to the 28th of May at Cape Town, South Africa. INSME Members and international delegates will have the opportunity to share their knowledge and exchange ideas over the three-day meeting throughout a balanced mix of round tables, an international conference, an international training and innovation tour to South Africa’s leading SME innovation institutions.

A great line-up of speakers with the most diverse range of expertise will provide the audience with insights on: “The right skill-set for a globally competitive and innovative enterprise"; "User driven innovation for sustainable growth in a collaborative and international innovation eco-system” and “Access to finance to stimulate inclusive growth for SMEs".

During the last day’s International Training on the emerging trend “Frugal Innovation in the context of Social Entrepreneurship”, the audience will learn from globally recognized trainers how an SME can make an impact and remain competitive on global markets despite the scarcity of resources.

With plenty of knowledge-sharing initiatives and networking opportunities, the 11th INSME Annual Meeting is the appointment you should not miss to catch-up with the latest innovation trends on the international agenda.

Learn more about the 11th INSME Annual Meeting here and join us at Cape Town!

INSME organizes a 5-day intensive training programme for a delegation from Saudi Arabia

INSME will welcome a delegation from the National Entrepreneurship Institute (INSME Member from Saudi Arabia) for a 5-day intensive training programme on the Italian Entrepreneurial Ecosystem. The training initiative taking place from the 8th to the 12th of June 2015 has been tailor-made to the needs of 30+ National Entrepreneurial Institute branch leaders and will address the following topics among many others: the Eco-System for an Entrepreneurship organization; innovative vs creative thinking methodologies in innovative products and creative solutions; effective communication and marketing; effective financing, effective methodologies: a comparison on diverse models and best practices of policy implications. During the last day, participants will also have the opportunity to visit relevant stakeholders and organizations and arrange business meetings to study their innovation models.

The training will benefit from the wide experience of trainers from the LUISS Enlabs Incubator; META Group (INSME President), Sapienza University and the OECD (INSME Moral Sponsor).

Learn more about the National Entrepreneurship Institute at this link.

INSME Secretary General at the 1st World Free Zones Organization International Conference & Exhibition

The 1st World Free Zones Organization International Conference & Exhibition on “Towards a New Global Trade Order" took place from the 11th to the 13th of May 2015 at Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

The event was the occasion to discuss the emerging trends and deep transformations international trade is undergoing as the private sector continues to refine its trade patterns through innovation.

During the 1st World FZO Outlook, the current practices in Free Trade Zones around the world have been analyzed, the most successful experiences presented, and their role in the new global trade order discussed through a mix of meetings, workshops and exhibitions. The event also offered the opportunity to visit some of the most important Free Zones in the United Arab Emirates.

INSME Secretary General, Ms. Pfeiffer, served as a speaker in the panel on “Quo Vadis Free Zones (Future of Free Zone, Free Zone of the Future)? Towards a new model for economic diversification” by lobbying for further involvement of SMEs in Free Zones and special treatment to let them grow and help employment to flourish.

To learn more please click here.

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News and contributions from the INSME Members

Larta Institute’s 2014 Annual Report

Larta Institute (INSME Member from the U.S.) has recently released its 2014 Annual Report which marks its 21st year in business.

2014 was a milestone year in the life of Larta, a new website has been launched, it won four competitive contract bids and new members have joined the network. 2014 also marks an important year for the NIH (U.S. National Institute of Health) Commercialization Assistance Programme. Over the last year 438 one-on-one mentor/company relationships have been established confirming Larta’s reputation as a leader in cultivating and engaging a powerful expert network and charting the application of innovation in the world.

To find out more about Larta’s 2014 achievements please click here.

UNIDO opens an Investment and Technology Promotion Office in Nigeria

The United Nations Industrial Development Organization - UNIDO (INSME Member), in partnership with the Federal Government of Nigeria opened an Investment and Technology Promotion Office (ITPO) in the capital of Nigeria, Abuja last April.

The Office is the first of its kind in the African continent and has been established with the aim of supporting Nigeria as well as countries of the Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS) on their path to inclusive and sustainable industrialization by identifying, attracting and mobilizing investments and appropriate technologies, especially for small and medium-sized enterprises in the region.

For further information about UNIDO’s activities in Nigeria, please refer to this email.

Learn more about the Investment and Technology Promotion Office here.

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INSME's Picks in the News

Business Advisers and HR services to help SMEs in Singapore

Mr. Teo Ser Luck, the Singaporean Minister of State for Trade and Industry, announced various Budget support programmes for small businesses at the SME Conference that took place in Singapore, last April. The support programmes are grouped around three main pillars whose application will be mainly managed by the enterprise development agency SPRING Singapore. First of all SPRING will be working with industrial partners to develop a shared pool of mentors to help SMEs develop the potential of their workforce. Secondly SPRING has also appointed a pool of HR service providers to offer micro and small enterprises the possibility to outsource HR operations such as payroll processing and employee data administration allowing them to focus on their core business and strategic HR functions. Last but not the least, the Government also foresees to further enhance the services provided by its network of 12 SME Centres to support SMEs willing to strengthen their businesses.

For any further information, please click here.

The Indian Ministry of Science and Technology launches an Equity Fund to Accelerate the Growth of Entrepreneurs in the field of Biotechnology

Mr. Shri Y.S. Chowdary, the Indian Minister of State for Science & Technology and Earth Sciences announced the launch of the Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council-BIRAC AcE Fund, an equity fund aimed at addressing the pressing needs of accelerating the growth of entrepreneurs in the field of biotechnology. The Fund will be operated by the Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC) a public sector initiative under the Department of Biotechnology of the Indian Ministry of Science & Technology. The Fund will attempt to enable innovation-driven biotech enterprises to fulfill the vision of a $ 100 billion biotech industry and create an 'Indian bio-economy" by 2025.

Learn more about it here.

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INSME Picks in the Web

How can Latin America and the Caribbean keep up Inclusive Growth?

According to Ms. Louise Cord, Practice Manager in the Poverty Global Practice for the World Bank’s Latin America and the Caribbean, LAC region has been the most inclusive region in the world over the last decade. Although things vary significantly at a country level, the author states that countries that did best at inclusive growth adopted policies that enabled equitable, efficient and sustainable fiscal policy and macroeconomic stability; fair and transparent institutions capable of delivering universal, good-quality basic services; well-functioning markets and adequate risk management at the macro and household levels.

Learn more at this link.

How African entrepreneurs can build knowledge economies

“Africa is going through an economic transition, becoming a knowledge-based economy for many young African entrepreneurs who have plenty of ideas, but the continent still faces many challenges in building economies around the products of technological entrepreneurship” - this is the opinion of Ms. Mariéme Jamme a Senegalese-born, UK-based CEO, blogger, technologist and social entrepreneur.

The author raises awareness on those challenges by stating that many solid innovations have failed to become profitable as they forgot to look at scalability and feasibility. Business skills as well as the need to fill the gap between creativity and knowledge of technical skills through STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics) subjects also represent a big issue in the continent.

Read the article here.

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Tenders, Calls & Consultations

CEI KnowHow Exchange Programme (KEP) ITALY

The Central European Initiative - CEI (INSME Member) has launched a call for proposals in the framework of the CEI Know-How Exchange Programme (KEP) - Italy aiming at:

  • strengthening the economic and social advancement of non-EU CEI Member States;
  • helping the new EU Members in their transformation from recipients to donors (emerging donors) of development assistance;
  • promoting principles of foreign development aid and support international collaboration among institutions in CEI member countries.

The call is open both to public and private bodies, international and non-governmental organizations registered in a CEI Member State (Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia) and the proposals should include activities - i.e. trainings, workshops, assistance in the preparation of strategic documents - that might be of support to achieve the Programme’s objectives.

The grant awarded shall not exceed fifty per cent of the total cost of the project and the maximum grant amount allocated to a single project cannot exceed € 40,000.

The deadline for submissions is the 1st of July 2015.

More information is available at this page.

The Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation

The Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation addresses Sub-Saharan African engineers working on or being involved in engineering innovations that:

  • will bring social and/or environmental benefits to Sub-Saharan Africa countries;
  • have strong potential to be replicated and scaled up;
  • have a realistic business plan with strong commercial viability.

Shortlisted applicants will benefit from a six month period of training and mentorship. Additionally the winner will receive £ 25,000 along with three runners-up who will be awarded £ 10,000 each.

The deadline for applications is the 29th of June 2015.

More information is available at this page.

Call for Integrating Society in Science and Innovation

The European Commission has launched a call for proposals with the aim of fostering the sharing of ‘Science With and For Society’ experience and know-how in Europe, and beyond. Activities under this call shall include the launch of a Knowledge Sharing Platform (KSP) to create more effective research and innovation policy support tools in the field of Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI). The platform shall work as a provider of RRI assessment and good practice function, and will disseminate and advocate findings with a view to strengthen European leadership in the governance of Responsible Research and Innovation in both policy-relevant and thematic European and global for a corresponding to the Horizon 2020 Societal Challenges. Furthermore, the proposals shall also aim to support the Science with and for Society Community by facilitating new and lasting partnerships, fostering joint visions and positions amongst constituencies.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of the order of € 3 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

The deadline for submitting proposals is the 16th of September 2015.

Learn more here.

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Interesting Initiatives

The LaunchPad: bridge the gap between innovation and explosive growth

The LaunchPad has been created in 2012 with the aim to find better ways to translate innovation in successful products and services. With the support of startup veterans and innovation experts, the LauchPad offers solutions to validate hypotheses, testing for value and accelerating time to market through a set of tools such as a Technology Platform, a hub for collaborating on Lean initiatives and keep track of the progress toward product-market fit; Immersion Programs, customized workshops to rethink how to bring ideas to market and Advisory Services to adapt Lean innovation to one’s business priorities. These solutions are offered to fit different actors’ needs such as enterprises, accelerators, educational organizations and governments.

Find out more here.

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Financing SMEs and Entrepreneurs 2015: an OECD Scoreboard

Financing SMEs and Entrepreneurs 2015: an OECD Scoreboard” is the fourth edition of a report aiming at providing a comprehensive framework for policy makers and other stakeholders to evaluate the financing needs of SMEs.

It monitors SMEs’ and Entrepreneurs’ access to finance in 34 countries over the period 2007-2013.

The publication includes indicators of debt, equity, asset-based finance and framework conditions for SMEs and entrepreneurship finance. The report shows the persistence of the problems related to the economic crisis and confirms that access to finance remains an issue in many countries. Furthermore an overview of the recent developments in public and private initiatives to support SMEs finance is offered, while a thematic chapter is dedicated to SME non-performing loans (NPLs) highlighting the importance of making progress in the harmonization of data in order to better understand this phenomenon that poses a risk to the economic recovery in some European countries.

Read the whole report here.

China’s New Foreign Investment Guidance Catalogue

The Chinese Government has recently adopted the Amendment to the China’s New Foreign Investment Guidance Catalogue which includes a list of the industrial sectors, subsectors and services reflecting the Chinese government’s view on the needs for foreign investments.

The Catalogue shows 349 “encouraged”, 38 “restricted” and 36 “prohibited” industries. As compared to the 2011 Catalogue, the “restricted” industry sectors have been significantly reduced from 79 to 38, and the “prohibited” sectors have also been reduced from 38 to 36. The overall trend is towards wider openness and liberalization.

The 2015 Catalogue is available at the following link.

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Recommended Website

RuWWad.ME: new online entrepreneurship hub in Palestine

RuWWad.ME is a Palestinian online platform dedicated to entrepreneurs and startups which offers them the opportunity to build their profile and to virtually meet individuals or organizations which might help them in the process of commercialization of their products/services.

The platform aims at providing an online support offering mentorship and showing best practices to develop better and more efficient business models.

More information is available here.

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Recommended Newsletter

The Frugal Innovation Hub Newsletter

The Frugal Innovation Hub is a virtual platform gathering stakeholders involved or interested in frugal innovation offering them a space to network and share best practices. The hub offers case studies on companies pioneering frugal innovation in diverse sectors such as manufacturing, retail, financial services and many others. Furthermore it offers insights, advices, techniques for those who are willing to implement frugal innovation within their organization.

The Frugal Innovation Hub Newsletter is updated with news, publications and exclusive contents related to frugal innovation and frugal economy.

To subscribe to the newsletter please click here.

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Highlighted events

European Seminar on Regions and Dual-Use of Technologies

11th-12th of June 2015
Bordeaux, France
Organized by the European Commission and Aquitaine Développement Innovation with the support of EURADA

The European Commission together with Aquitaine Développement Innovation and with the support of EURADA (INSME Member from Belgium) organizes the European Seminar on Regions and Dual-Use of Technologies taking place on the 11th and 12th of June in Bordeaux, France. The seminar will be the occasion to discuss regional SMEs and dual-use internationalization opportunities with a special focus on the exchange of experiences in four European Regions (Andalucia - Spain; Aquitaine and Brittany - France; Podkarpacie /Rzeszow - Poland).

The registration form and more information is available here.

Internet of Things 360 Summit

27th - 29th of October 2015
Rome, Italy
Organized by EAI

The European Alliance for Innovation - EAI (INSME Member from Belgium) organizes the second edition of the Internet of Things 360 Summit taking place from the 27th to the 29th of October in Rome, Italy.

IoT 360 is organized under the patronage of the European Commission Representation in Italy with the collaboration of partners which are INSME, CREATE-NET, IBM, SAPIENZA, Tech Economy and the Industrial Internet Consortium.

IoT360 2015 will be the occasion to meet world leading experts and innovators, but also to learn from the knowledge and practical experience of industry leaders in the field of IoT. The Summit will also host IoT exhibits where makers will present their products to get noticed by investors. IoT360 will be opened with 10 scientific conferences covering different areas such as IoT technologies for health care, safety and security in IoT and interoperability in IoT, among others.

For more information have a look at the dedicated website of the event here.

Future international meetings, workshops, seminars selected by INSME

2nd - 3rd of June 2015
OECD Forum 2015
Organized by the OECD (INSME Moral Sponsor)
Paris, France

14th - 17th of June 2015
XXVI ISPIM Innovation Conference
Organized by ISPIM (INSME Member)
Budapest, Hungary

15th - 17th of June 2015
First Innovative Enterprise Week “Access to Finance for Research, Innovation and SMEs 2015”
Organized by the European IPR Helpdesk (INSME Partner)
Riga, Latvia

18th - 20th of June 2015
Vienna Energy Forum 2015
Organized by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization - UNIDO (INSME Member)
Vienna, Austria

18th - 19th of June 2015
rd Global Forum on Responsible Business Conduct
Organized by the OECD (INSME Moral Sponsor)
Paris, France

23rd - 26th of June 2015
International Conference on Innovation Strategies for Sustainable Development
Organized by the UNECE Committee on Innovation, Competitiveness and PPPs (INSME Member) and the Government of Israel
Jerusalem, Israel

28th of June - 1st of July 2015
st EARMA Annual Conference
Organized by the European Association of Research Managers and Administrators (INSME Partner)
Leiden, Netherlands

21st - 23rd of August
XIII Triple Helix International Conference 2015
Organized by the Triple Helix Association (INSME Member)
Beijing, China

23rd - 25th of September
2015 Daejon Global Innovation Forum, 2015 UNESCO-WTA International Training Workshop, 12
th WTA Daejon Hi-Tech Fair
Organized by UNESCO, WTA (INSME Member) and Daejon Metropolitan City
Daejon Metropolitan City, Republic of Korea

14th - 16th of October 2015
Culturallia 2015
Organized by Hainaut Developpement, the Chamber of Commerce and the Exporters' Club of Belgian Province of Luxembourg, SPI, BEP and in partnership with AWEX (INSME Member)
Mons, Belgium

20th - 23rd of October 2015
World Entrepreneurship Forum on “Global Entrepreneurship: Connected Continents, New Opportunities"
Organized by World Entrepreneurship Forum and the Hanghzou City
Hanghzou, China

2nd - 5th of November 2015
BIN@PORTO 2015 on "Responsible Research & Innovation: a collective, sustainable, inclusive and system-wide approach"
Organized by Business & Innovation Network
Porto, Portugal

3rd - 6th of November 2015
18th TCI Global Conference
Organized by TCI Network
Daegu, Korea

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