Using our resources better
his year’s Spring European Council, the Union’s annual review of economic progress, was overshadowed by the Madrid train bombings. Naturally, EU leaders focused on their response to those rather than on the details of economic regulation. But in the run-up to the summit, interested parties from all over Europe – notably industry – delivered clearer messages than ever before that governments need to act. The European Business Summit was one key forum where senior industrialists sought to influence the politicians. Speakers repeatedly emphasised the need for action by Member State governments to ensure innovation contributes sufficiently to Europe’s economic targets.
The recent publication of the third Community Innovation Survey, along with the third edition of the Innobarometer, provides the most detailed picture yet of Europe’s innovation landscape. It is clear that there are still many obstacles preventing, or discouraging, firms from innovating and these two surveys provide strong evidence to governments of the areas in which action is most needed.
In our dossier, we look at the issue of women entrepreneurs. Research demonstrates that women are less likely to start their own business, particularly one which relies on technology, than men. Across the EU, a range of initiatives have been undertaken to redress this balance, and ideas and experiences from these are now being exchanged to encourage more women to implement their business ideas.