Good practices in SME policy
In many areas of SME policy, the European Commission works in partnership with the Member States by facilitating the identification and exchange of good practices. For many years, this process was rooted in the European Charter for Small Businesses, and this method has been continued and widened under the priorities of the Small Business Act for Europe. A database of good practices identified in this manner is available.
A "good practice" is generally accepted to illustrate an approach that deserves the attention and interest of other policy makers or practitioners. Their purpose is to inspire further change and "better practice" as practitioners look beyond their local circumstances and national boundaries.
Over recent years there has been a significant convergence in Member States' thinking on SME policy and in the practical aspects of policy implementation. An increasing number of Member States have reported that they have drawn inspiration from measures developed in other Member States, thus benefiting from one another's strengths in a cross-fertilisation of ideas.
Many concrete examples bear witness to the success of this method:
- Applying the Think Small First principle
- Simplifying start-up procedures
- Internationalisation of SMEs
- Education for entrepreneurship
- Bankruptcy and fresh start
- Reducing the administrative burden
In addition, since the front line in promoting SMEs and entrepreneurship is at the regional and local level, the Commission has launched the European Enterprise Awards to reward excellence in promoting SMEs and entrepreneurship, particularly at regional and local level.