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Social Agenda – Innovation is also valid for employment and social policy

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Innovation can help promote inclusive growth, fight against poverty, ensure a successful transition to a green economy and implement the youth guarantee, says the November issue of Social Agenda.

Social Agenda 35 contains a special feature on the new Employment and Social Innovation (EaSI) 2014-2020 funding programme, which will give a boost to innovation as well as to social enterprises, and pave the way for experimentation on a greater scale via the new European Social Fund (ESF) 2014-2020.

Statistics contained in Social Agenda 35:

  • More than 6 000 entrepreneurs have already benefited from loans worth a total of close to €50 million under Progress Microfinance. Almost 80% of the micro-companies supported are start-ups operating for less than three years.
  • Between 100 and 150 local and regional officials can register of their own initiative to the third annual convention of the European Platform Against Poverty and Social Exclusion taking place in Brussels on 26-27 November.
  • In 2012, 4 of the 41 existing EU sectoral social dialogue committees agreed on binding agreements - on working time in inland waterways transport, occupational health and safety in hairdressing, work in the sea fisheries sector and standard player contracts in the professional football sector.
  • 44% of workers are covered by negotiated agreements in the Central and Eastern European Member States, compared to 70% of workers in the rest of the EU.
  • Roma people form a significant proportion of the population in Bulgaria (c.10%), Slovakia (9%), Romania (8%), Hungary (7%), Greece, the Czech Republic and Spain (1.5-2.5% each).
  • In Bulgaria and Romania, Roma people form 1 in 5 new labour market entrants.
  • Full Roma integration in the labour market could bring economic benefits estimated at around €0.5 billion annually for some countries.
  • The EaSI programme 2014-2020 will increase funding for innovation from €2-4 million under PROGRESS 2007-2013 to €10-14 million.
  • With an overall budget of €919.5 million in current prices (taking inflation into account), EASI will allocate 61% of its funds to the PROGRESS axis, 18% to EURES and 21% to the microfinance/social entrepreneurship axis.
  • Europe has witnessed an increase in poverty and social exclusion of 4 million more people in the last 3 years.

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