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Meet the EEPA 2021 Jury

Today on the Promoting Enterprise news portal, we introduce you to the members of the 2021 European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) jury. The EEPA jury is made up of representatives from the European Commission, business associations, academia, the current European presidencies and the last Grand Jury Prize winner.

EEPA has now progressed to the European level of the competition! The national coordinators have selected up to two of the best national projects to put forward to this stage. Now it is the turn of the European jury to select the best of these national projects to include on 2021 European shortlist. But before that happens, we would like to take a moment to introduce this year’s jury members.

Jury member Professor Thomas Cooney

There are seven jury members in total.  We begin with Professor Thomas Cooney, who has been a jury member for several years and brings significant experience to the role. Thomas is Professor in Entrepreneurship at the Dublin Institute of Technology and Academic Director of the TU Dublin Institute for Minority Entrepreneurship.

Jury member Franciso Sá

Next is Franciso Sá, president of the board of directors of the Portuguese Agency for Competitiveness and Innovation (IAPMEI). Franciso represents the Portuguese EU Presidency on the jury. Mr Franciso Sá is the SME Envoy of Portugal.

Jury member Jernej Salecl

Representing the Slovenian EU Presidency is Jernej Salecl. Jernej is director-general of the Internationalisation, Entrepreneurship and Technology Directorate and former head of division for Industry, Innovation and Technology at the Slovenian Ministry of Economic Development and Technology. Mr Salecl is the SME Envoy of Slovenia.

Jury member Dimitri Pivot

Dimitri Pivot represents last year’s Grand Jury Prize winner ‘Le Portail du Rebond’ or ‘The Recovery Portal’, a French organisation made up of associations that together provide a nationwide service to entrepreneurs to help them through difficult times.

Jury member Veronique Willems

The next jury member that we present to you today is Veronique Willems. Veronique represents crafts and SMEs in Europe as the Secretary-General of the SME organisation SMEunited (formerly known as UEAPME), a position she has held since January 2017.

Thomas Wobben

Another veteran jury member is Thomas Wobben, Director of the Directorate for Horizontal Policies and Networks at the Committee of the Regions. His responsibilities include monitoring the Europe 2020 strategy, relations with the OECD and Eurostat, and prospective works of the Committee of the Regions.

Jury member Kristin Schreiber

Finally, we introduce you to Kristin Schreiber. Kristin represents the European Commission, where she was appointed Director for Chemicals, Food and Retail in 2021, having served as Director for SME Policy from 2015 until 2021 and prior to that as Director for Governance of the Single Market and International Affairs.

The jury will meet in Brussels on 17 September to deliberate on this year’s entries and to select a shortlist to move forward to the next stage of the competition. Choosing between so many different projects demonstrating innovation, creativity and passion to support entrepreneurship makes their job difficult. We wish them the very best of luck in their deliberations.

Make sure to visit the News Portal regularly for updates on the European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) and to find out which projects are selected for the European shortlist by our prestigious EEPA 2021 jury.

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EEPA 2021 National Winners – Responsible and Inclusive Entrepreneurship

In our last EEPA national winners post on the Promoting Enterprise portal, we presented the EEPA 2021 national winners in the category Supporting the Sustainable Transition. This time it is the turn of the shortlisted projects in Category 6 – Responsible and Inclusive Entrepreneurship.

This category aims to reward projects that offer new and innovative solutions and approaches to promote socially and environmentally responsible business. This is done by encouraging disadvantaged groups to take part in entrepreneurship initiatives, for example. In addition, promoting corporate social responsibility among small and medium-sized enterprises contributes to creating a more inclusive society.  

The national winners in Category 6 – Responsible and Inclusive Entrepreneurship are:

The innovative approaches taken by these national projects impressed the national EEPA coordinators, and they were selected to advance to the next phase of the awards. They will now be reviewed by the European jury, which will decide on the final shortlist – we wish them the best of luck!

Make sure to visit the News Portal each week to find out which projects have won their national competitions and are being considered for the European shortlist by our prestigious EEPA 2021 jury.

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EEPA 2021 National Winners – Supporting the Sustainable Transition

In our last EEPA 2021 national winners post on the Promoting Enterprise news portal, we presented the national winners supporting the Internationalisation of Business. Now it is the turn of the shortlisted projects in Category 5 – Supporting the Sustainable Transition.

Projects in this category have a strong sustainability focus and propose innovative approaches to help the European economy transition to a more sustainable path. This could happen by adopting a circular economy approach in terms of producing, consuming and distributing SME products and services. The category also recognises initiatives with specific environmental features such as encouraging the use of recycled materials and renewable energy.

 The shortlisted projects in Category 5 – Supporting the Sustainable Transition are:

These national projects were shortlisted by national EEPA coordinators to advance to the next phase of the awards. They will now be reviewed by the European jury, which will decide on the final shortlist. All of the shortlisted projects are deserving winners. We wish them the best of luck in the next stage of the competition.

Make sure to visit the News Portal each week to find out which projects have won their national competitions and are being considered for the European shortlist by our prestigious EEPA 2021 jury.

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EEPA 2021 National Winners – Supporting the Internationalisation of Business

Last time on the Promoting Enterprise news portal, we introduced you to the EEPA 2021 national winners in the category Improving the Business Environment and Supporting the Digital Transition. This time it is the turn of the shortlisted projects in Category 4 – Supporting the Internationalisation of Business.

The ability to access a wide variety of markets can be critical to the success of any start-up. In light of this, this EEPA category aims to reward projects that make it easier for enterprises, and particularly small and medium-sized businesses, to break into international markets, both inside the EU and globally, to benefit from the opportunities that this expansion offers.

The national winners in EEPA 2021 Category 4 – Supporting the Internationalisation of Business are:

All of the selected projects are taking a proactive and innovative approach to the internationalisation of business and are worthy winners in the national competitions. We congratulate all of the projects and wish them the best of luck going forward.

Make sure to visit the News Portal each week to find out which projects have been selected in their national competitions and are being considered for the European shortlist by our prestigious EEPA 2021 jury.

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YEC 2021 – Why YOU should enter!

In July, the European Commission launched the 6th edition of the SME Week Youth Essay Competition. If you are 18-25 years old and from an EU or COSME country, the essay competition is an opportunity for you to speak your mind and share your opinions with EU policy-makers, entrepreneurs and innovators.

The challenge this year is to write an essay about: What do SMEs need to become sustainable and resilient in the context of COVID-19 and other global challenges? Think about the competences and skills needed in the future for an entrepreneur, describe three promising and sustainable start-ups in 2030.

You have until 26 September 2020 to submit your entries, so there is still some time. To give you a bit of encouragement, we asked last year’s winner and finalists if they had any advice for this year’s participants.

“The great thing about this competition is how creative and free you can be in your approach. Read some of the older entries, get inspired, then forget all of them and build your own thing! You can do it!” Sabine Kerssens, 2020 winner

“Think about what makes you angry, about what you want to change in the world. Sometimes we want to be too rational to seem technical, but in reality, when you start an enterprise, it is because there is a very simple problem. For example, if you are a baker, you are providing an essential good for the people around you: food. And sometimes people just start to work in automatic pilot and forget why they do things, or they think their work is nonsense. This is part of the reason why some enterprises die: they forget the reason why they exist, or they don’t want to ask themselves that question. The same goes for writing an essay that wants to make us reflect and see the world in another way. In short, feelings are very powerful catalysts for change.” Pablo Pastor, 2020 finalist

“Brainstorm your ideas, take a little break from it, come back and expand on all these ideas. I wrote about five essays, answering the same question in different ways, and essentially hosted an X Factor – evicting an essay from the running on each round of reviewing! This helped me because it gave me the chance to explore all the avenues I was interested in, hash them out completely, and then refine it down to the one I felt most passionate about.” Geena Whiteman, 2020 finalist

We hope that this excellent advice will get your creative juices flowing – so get writing, and good luck!

For any questions on the SME Week Youth Essay competition, contact smeweek@loweurope.eu and read the 2021 competition launch post for all of the information on this year’s edition. Good luck, get writing and don’t forget to submit!

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EEPA 2021 National Winners – Improving the Business Environment and Supporting the Digital Transition

It’s time to introduce you to some more EEPA national winners. Last time you met the winners in Category 2 – Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills – today on the Promoting Enterprise News Portal it is the turn of the national winners in Category 3 – Improving the Business Environment and Supporting the Digital Transition.

This category is looking to reward innovative projects and solutions that help create an enabling environment for businesses to thrive. It also aims to recognize initiatives that support the digital transition of the European economy. These could include projects that support enterprise start-up and growth, or simplify legislative and administrative procedures for businesses.

The projects that have been shortlisted in this category are tackling a variety of challenges – from innovative approaches to help businesses cope with the impacts of COVID-19 to digital solutions that streamline processes and increase efficiency.

The national winners in EEPA 2021 Category 3 Improving the Business Environment and Supporting the Digital Transition are:

Click on the links above to find out more about the projects’ innovative approaches to improving the business environment and supporting the digital transition. The national EEPA coordinators have selected these projects to proceed to the next phase of the awards, where they will assessed by the European jury.

We congratulate all of the shortlisted projects and wish them the best of luck going forward.

Come back to the News Portal each week to find out which projects won their national competitions and are being considered for the European shortlist by our prestigious EEPA 2021 jury.

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EEPA 2021 National Winners – Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills

In our last post on the Promoting Enterprise news portal, we presented the EEPA 2021 national winners in the category Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit. This week it is the turn of the shortlisted projects in Category 2 – Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills.

The Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills category recognises initiatives that improve entrepreneurial, managerial and employee skills.  All of the shortlisted projects take an innovative approach to encouraging entrepreneurship, focusing on diverse areas – from data protection and digitalisation to social and green entrepreneurship, the promotion of entrepreneurship among female migrants and encouraging entrepreneurship in school students.

So, without further ado, the shortlisted national projects in the Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills category in EEPA 2021 are:

By clicking on the links in the list, you can find out more about the projects’ innovative approaches to entrepreneurial skills development. These national projects were shortlisted by national EEPA coordinators and are advancing to the next phase of the awards. They will now be reviewed by the European jury, which will decide on the final shortlist. 

All of the shortlisted projects are worthy winners, and we congratulate them and wish them the best of luck going forward.

Come back to the News Portal each week to find out which projects won their national competitions and are being considered for the European shortlist by our prestigious EEPA 2021 jury.

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YEC 2021 – Catching up with 2020 Winner Sabine Kerssens

Today on Promoting Enterprise we are catching up with last year’s Youth Essay Competition winner, Sabine Kerssens. Last year, Sabine impressed the competition jury with her ideas about the importance of cross-border collaboration and how learning from different cultures makes innovation more inclusive. So, what has she been up to since her success in the competition?

What have you been doing since winning the Youth Essay Competition?

For many Dutch people, normalcy is the glue that holds the world together. We say: “Just act normal, as that’s crazy enough.” However, if you have a dream to be a change-maker, launching a start-up that is going to disrupt the world, this mindset might hold you back. Soon I will launch a report to quantify entrepreneurial culture in the Netherlands and abroad!

What was the best part about entering the Youth Essay Competition?

You might be young when you participate, but someday (now?) the future of the world will rest on your shoulders too. The Youth Essay Competition is a great start to participating in a greener and happier world. It helps you get your thoughts aligned, practice getting that message to your audience through writing, and be heard!

What did you learn from the Youth Essay competition experience?

If no one understands you, it doesn’t really matter how brilliant your idea is. A really big part of this competition is not just being young and having an opinion, you also have to write an essay that people would like to read. This is the start of improving my writing, speaking and non-verbal communication.

Do you have any exciting projects that you would like to share?

I help Dutch start-ups and scale-ups thrive. My projects provide a data-driven journey for innovators to scale. Risk-taking change-makers should be able to rely on and accelerate through the knowledge and experience of generations, and I am here to help. So, if you have ideas or thoughts on last year’s essay, on what innovators need or on what I should be researching next: please reach out via LinkedIn!

We published an interview with Sabine on Promoting Enterprise site after she won the competition last year. You can read it here.

There is still some time left before the September 26 deadline for this year’s competition, so if you have some ideas to address this year’s challenge, why not follow in Sabine’s footsteps and submit an entry.

Follow us for competition updates on TwitterFacebook and Instagram and make sure to follow and use the hashtag #YEC2021.

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EEPA 2021 National Winners – Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit

Today on the Promoting Enterprise News Portal, we would like to introduce the national winners competing in the category Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit at the European level of the EEPA 2021.

Every year the top national projects are selected by national coordinators, and the most innovative continue to the next phase of the awards, during which the European jury reviews the entries and decides on the final shortlist. 

The Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit category recognises initiatives that promote an entrepreneurial mindset, especially among young people and women. Below you can find out more about which initiatives the jury will be considering this year.

Congratulations to the national winners of “Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit”!

Come back to the News Portal each week to find out which projects won their national competitions and are being considered for the European shortlist by our prestigious EEPA 2021 jury.

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The SME Assembly is back. Live – and better than ever

This year’s SME Assembly focused on Togetherness + Resilience = Recovery, will bring together actors from across the European and international enterprise ecosystems, including citizens, businesses and policymakers, to build a more sustainable and resilient future together.

From 15-17 November 2021, the beautiful city of Portorož in Slovenia, and the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the European Union, will play host to the flagship event of the 2021 European SME Week, the SME Assembly.

What is on the programme?

The SME Assembly presents a unique opportunity to bring together the brightest minds and actors from across the enterprise ecosystem to share, discuss and work towards solutions for problems European SMEs and their networks face. After the challenges brought around by the pandemic, and the need for SMEs to be resilient and resourceful, the SME Assembly will be focusing on how community and collaborative resilience are two important elements on the road to recovery.

Through a combination of high-level panels and interviews, expert roundtables, interactive workshops, and informative masterclasses, this year’s Assembly will explore how resilient SMEs can recover by working together towards a more digital and sustainable European economy.

The full programme will be released closer to the SME Assembly but in the meantime, we can confirm that the SME Assembly 2021 will feature:

For full programme details, and high-level speaker announcements, including the prestigious Schumpeter lecturer, keep coming back to the News Portal, follow us on Twitter and Facebook, and don’t forget to sign up for the SME Week Newsletter.

What will this year’s Assembly look like?

This year, the Assembly will follow a hybrid format, with the majority of the event taking place in-person, and key sessions also being available online, for global attendees to contribute. Due to the ever-changing health situation, in-person places will be limited, and all attendees will be required to present a valid EU Digital COVID certificate demonstrating full vaccination or a negative test. Further details about the upcoming SME Assembly, including the format and highly anticipated programme, will follow soon.

For any questions on this year’s SME Assembly, please contact the SME Assembly Secretariat.

Stay up to date

Don’t miss out on any of the latest news from Promoting Enterprise and keep following us here on the News Portal, or over on Twitter via @EEPA_EU, @EU_Growth and the dedicated Facebook page. For all the latest on the SME Assembly, don’t forget to follow – #SMEAssembly2021.

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    • Meet the EEPA 2021 Jury September 17, 2021
      Today on the Promoting Enterprise news portal, we introduce you to the members of the 2021 European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) jury. The EEPA jury is made up of representatives from the European Commission, business associations, academia, the current European presidencies and the last Grand Jury Prize winner. EEPA has now progressed to the European […]
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    • EEPA 2021 National Winners – Responsible and Inclusive Entrepreneurship September 16, 2021
      In our last EEPA national winners post on the Promoting Enterprise portal, we presented the EEPA 2021 national winners in the category Supporting the Sustainable Transition. This time it is the turn of the shortlisted projects in Category 6 – Responsible and Inclusive Entrepreneurship. This category aims to reward projects that offer new and innovative solutions […]
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    • EEPA 2021 National Winners – Supporting the Sustainable Transition September 16, 2021
      In our last EEPA 2021 national winners post on the Promoting Enterprise news portal, we presented the national winners supporting the Internationalisation of Business. Now it is the turn of the shortlisted projects in Category 5 – Supporting the Sustainable Transition. Projects in this category have a strong sustainability focus and propose innovative approaches to […]
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    • EEPA 2021 National Winners – Supporting the Internationalisation of Business September 15, 2021
      Last time on the Promoting Enterprise news portal, we introduced you to the EEPA 2021 national winners in the category Improving the Business Environment and Supporting the Digital Transition. This time it is the turn of the shortlisted projects in Category 4 – Supporting the Internationalisation of Business. The ability to access a wide variety […]
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    • YEC 2021 – Why YOU should enter! September 13, 2021
      In July, the European Commission launched the 6th edition of the SME Week Youth Essay Competition. If you are 18-25 years old and from an EU or COSME country, the essay competition is an opportunity for you to speak your mind and share your opinions with EU policy-makers, entrepreneurs and innovators. The challenge this year […]
      promotingenterprise
    • EEPA 2021 National Winners – Improving the Business Environment and Supporting the Digital Transition September 10, 2021
      It’s time to introduce you to some more EEPA national winners. Last time you met the winners in Category 2 – Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills – today on the Promoting Enterprise News Portal it is the turn of the national winners in Category 3 – Improving the Business Environment and Supporting the Digital Transition. This […]
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    • EEPA 2021 National Winners – Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills September 9, 2021
      In our last post on the Promoting Enterprise news portal, we presented the EEPA 2021 national winners in the category Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit. This week it is the turn of the shortlisted projects in Category 2 – Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills. The Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills category recognises initiatives that improve entrepreneurial, managerial and employee […]
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    • YEC 2021 – Catching up with 2020 Winner Sabine Kerssens September 8, 2021
      Today on Promoting Enterprise we are catching up with last year’s Youth Essay Competition winner, Sabine Kerssens. Last year, Sabine impressed the competition jury with her ideas about the importance of cross-border collaboration and how learning from different cultures makes innovation more inclusive. So, what has she been up to since her success in the […]
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    • EEPA 2021 National Winners – Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit September 7, 2021
      Today on the Promoting Enterprise News Portal, we would like to introduce the national winners competing in the category Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit at the European level of the EEPA 2021. Every year the top national projects are selected by national coordinators, and the most innovative continue to the next phase of the awards, during which […]
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    • The SME Assembly is back. Live – and better than ever September 6, 2021
      This year’s SME Assembly focused on Togetherness + Resilience = Recovery, will bring together actors from across the European and international enterprise ecosystems, including citizens, businesses and policymakers, to build a more sustainable and resilient future together. From 15-17 November 2021, the beautiful city of Portorož in Slovenia, and the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of […]
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