All of us need to think quite hard about the future, our own future... And in doing so it would appear that the younger generation become a subject of pivotal interest and concern. This is not because we are on the defensive needing to invent the means to help unemployed, demotivated young Europeans, and indeed others around the world. But because it is the logical course of action to place Generation Y at the centre of any future that examines economic and social policy. Not because we see Generation Y as another target group for policies and actions. But because, if the future involves economic development, social wealth, innovation and suitable employment, we need to consider entrepreneurship, competitiveness, incubation and acceleration. And into that equation we need to bring capabilities that are young, fresh, new and modern. Because thinking about the future - about economic development, social wealth, entrepreneurship, innovation, employment, competitiveness, incubation and acceleration - all this requires the capability and desire to bring to the table brand new perspectives.
Today it is about design thinking, total networking, social innovation, alternative financing, open innovation, smart collaboration, digital technologies, crowd-sourcing, outsourcing, lean start-up, out-of-the-box research, international connectivity, true benchmarking… Whether you are an entrepreneur, an innovator, a researcher, an employee, a senior VP, a student, self-employed or unemployed.... Whether you are a business support organisation, an innovation facilitator, a cluster manager, a civil servant, a policy maker... It is vital to develop your capabilities in re-questioning, rethinking, re-observing, re-designing, re-inventing, reengineering, re-organising, re-directing... the way things are done. And if I am right, and if this is what needs to happen, it means there is something wrong. And whether or not we are responsible for the current state of affairs that so require change, if we do not steer a different course now we will be held accountable for any future outcomes. The change we need to bring about is only possible in collaboration with players who behave as champions of ‘constructive controversies’, together with smart and specialized networked communities like ours (EBN), and with policymakers who have the vision of building a smart, growing, competitive, sustainable and inclusive Europe.
We need to work together in conjunction with those thinkers and doers who contribute to the co-construction of this new 'entrepreneurial & innovative' civil society. It is our honour to welcome, in this issue of the magazine, a few inspiring contributors covering subjects such as the open innovation challenges, the close links between incubation / acceleration and angels financing, virtual incubation, a zoom on what’s happening outside Europe in Asia and the Americas… And it is our pleasure to welcome you to join our upcoming Annual Congress in Spain at the end of June that is themed on ‘The young entrepreneurs ecosystem in motion’ - we look forward to an ongoing conversation that enables all the participants in this important and timely journey we are all making.
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