Navigation path

Themes
Agriculture & food
Energy
Environment
  Atmosphere
  Biodiversity
  Clean technology and recycling
  Climate & global change
  Cultural heritage
  Earth Observation
  Ecosystems, incl. land, inland waters, marine
  Health & environment
  Land management
  Natural disasters
  Sustainable development
  Urban living
  Other
ERA-NET
Health & life sciences
Human resources & mobility
Industrial research
Information society
Innovation
International cooperation
Nanotechnology
Pure sciences
Research infrastructures
Research policy
Science & business
Science in society
Security
SMEs
Social sciences and humanities
Space
Special Collections
Transport

Countries
Countries
  Argentina
  Australia
  Austria
  Belarus
  Belgium
  Brazil
  Bulgaria
  Cameroon
  Canada
  China
  Colombia
  Croatia
  Cyprus
  Czech Republic
  Denmark
  Egypt
  Estonia
  Finland
  France
  Georgia
  Germany
  Ghana
  Greece
  Hungary
  Iceland
  India
  Ireland
  Israel
  Italy
  Japan
  Kazakhstan
  Kenya
  Korea
  Latvia
  Lithuania
  Luxembourg
  Malta
  Mexico
  Netherlands
  Nigeria
  Norway
  Peru
  Poland
  Portugal
  Romania
  Russia
  Senegal
  Serbia
  Slovakia
  Slovenia
  South Africa
  Spain
  Swaziland
  Sweden
  Switzerland
  Taiwan
  Tunisia
  Turkey
  Ukraine
  United Kingdom
  United States


   Headlines

Last Update: 14-01-2013  
Related category(ies):
Innovation  |  Science & business  |  Environment  |  SMEs

 

Add to PDF "basket"

Unlocking the entrepreneurial spirit

Being your own boss is an aspiration for many Europeans — almost 4 out of 10 people in fact. The prospect of a potentially better income, independence and the freedom to work wherever and whenever suits is a highly attractive prospect for millions of would-be entrepreneurs. Yet fears of failure and bankruptcy, and the risk of an irregular income mean many people keep their aspirations as a pipe dream. This fear factor is responsible for the drop in those becoming self-employed by 20 % within the last 3 years, mainly due to the current economic climate. However, the European Commission hope to change this: the European Entrepreneurship Action Plan aims at bringing growth and employment back to Europe.

Four out of 10 Europeans aspire to be their own boss © Shutterstock
Four out of 10 Europeans aspire to be their own boss
©  Shutterstock

With 37 % of Europeans eager to be their own boss, there is potential for millions of new businesses to be added to almost 21 million small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the EU.

The idea behind the action plan is to support entrepreneurs, remove obstacles and potentially revolutionise entrepreneurial culture in Europe. Specific measures include reducing the time it takes to start up a business, and helping promising entrepreneurs that are young people, women, seniors, migrants, and the unemployed.

In addition, entrepreneurship education will be included in school curricula, where it is believed that entrepreneurial education can trigger an increase in new companies. According to a Eurobarometer survey, between 15 % and 20 % of students who participate in a mini-company programme in secondary school will later start their own company. So these students are three to five times more likely take the plunge than the general population. And this, in turn, has the potential to boost high-tech and high growth companies by supporting business ecosystems, partnerships and industrial alliances.

Other findings from the survey revealed that men (42 %) and young people (45 %) are more interested in being self-employed than women (33 %) or older people (36 %). In terms of countries, Lithuania (58 %) and Greece (50%) are most interested in being self-employed, while self-employment is least popular in Sweden (22 %), Finland (24 %), Denmark (28 %) and Slovenia (28 %).

But for any new business to take shape, having an appropriate idea in the first place is vital, as is having the necessary financing. Other important factors are having appropriate business partners, being inspired by role models, addressing an urgent social or ecological need, and being dissatisfied with one's previous work situation.

European Commission Vice President, Antonio Tajani, says: 'More entrepreneurs mean more jobs, more innovation and more competitiveness. Becoming an entrepreneur and making a vision come true takes a lot of personal risk and effort. Entrepreneurs are the heroes of our time. Entrepreneurship is also the most powerful driver of economic growth in economic history. Therefore, we want to make entrepreneurship an attractive and accessible prospect for European citizen. This is the key message of our action plan. If we can unleash Europe's entrepreneurial potential, we can bring back growth to Europe.'


Convert article(s) to PDF

No article selected


loading


Search articles

Notes:
To restrict search results to articles in the Information Centre, i.e. this site, use this search box rather than the one at the top of the page.

After searching, you can expand the results to include the whole Research and Innovation web site, or another section of it, or all Europa, afterwards without searching again.

Please note that new content may take a few days to be indexed by the search engine and therefore to appear in the results.

Print Version
Share this article
See also

European Commission — Enterprise & Industry
European Commission — Employment and social rights





  Top   Research Information Center