New Task Force to explore innovation and entrepreneurship

Innovation and entrepreneurship are unanimously considered key pillars of economic growth and well-being and pivotal drivers of Europe’s economic (and possibly political) recovery. Against this background, the first meeting of the new CEPS Task Force “Unleashing Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Europe: People, Places and Policies”, held in Brussels on September 23rd, explored the multifaceted links between innovation, entrepreneurship and growth. Philippe Aghion (Harvard University) and Daniel Isenberg (Babson College) opened the event. Aghion examined the growth-enhancing role played by innovation policy and urged EU member states to introduce ‘innovation-friendly’ structural reforms. Isenberg presented the groundbreaking concept of ‘entrepreneurship ecosystem’ and suggested five practical principles to spur entrepreneurship in Europe and achieve substantial results in terms of growth and job creation. The views of governments, institutions, civil society, young innovators and practitioners were then gathered in two additional sessions. While Helen Kopman (DG CNCT), Harald Gruber (EIB) and Thomas Kozlowski (EIF) presented the tools currently available at the EU level to support innovation, Kumardev Chatterjee (EYIF), Laurent Zibell (IndustriAll), Nicholas Davis (World Economic Forum) and industry representatives from several sectors identified the existing obstacles to achieving an ‘innovation- and entrepreneurship-friendly’ Europe. In the upcoming meetings, Task Force participants will take these obstacles as a point of departure and search for actionable solutions to deal with the 'innovation emergency' that the EU is facing.