Four Key Insights from Entrepreneurship Policy Leaders Around the World
14 May 2019

This post is part of a four-part series on policy lessons shared by policymakers from across dozens of countries ahead of their participation in the V Startup Nations Ministerial:

  1. Start with a Strong Signal
  2. Mind the Gap Between Idea and Impact
  3. Overcome Implementation Challenges
  4. Tackle Overlooked Policy Areas


How can you make policymaking for entrepreneurship most effective in your country? One of the four common lessons shared by the Startup Nations policy network was loud and clear: governments must demonstrate commitment to building an entrepreneurial economy.

Policymaking should start with — and sustain — a strong signal that entrepreneurship is a priority for the country or region. It’s not enough to include entrepreneurship in a long list of policy priorities: public officials need to plant the entrepreneurship flag in the ground and let everyone know it is important.

What countries have been effective at sending strong signals?

  • Netherlands: Prince Constantijn was appointed as Startup Envoy to make entrepreneurship a high-profile issue in a country that boasts many successful corporate multinationals.
  • Dominican Republic: Within the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, those charged with supporting entrepreneurs are resource-constrained. Yet they have spent enormous amounts of time talking about the importance of entrepreneurship, persuading the private sector to take it seriously and invest in entrepreneurs.
  • Georgia: The Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development decided to institutionalize long-term support to innovation by establishing Georgia’s Innovation & Technology Agency (GITA)
  • Nigeria: A National Council on MSME (micro, small, and medium enterprises) was established at the highest level of government, to be chaired by the Vice President.
  • Poland: In 2018 a Constitution for Business was enacted, which included legal reform and reduction of administrative burdens. But it also included “a charter of entrepreneurs’ fundamental rights,” making cultural support for entrepreneurs clear.

Even when a strong signal is sent, it can lose force in the face of the main obstacle to entrepreneurship policy: the gap between idea and impact. We will discuss our findings in the next post of this series


Dane Stangler

Senior Advisor

Dane Stangler is a senior advisor to the Global Entrepreneurship Network where he helps ensure that resources spent on new policies and programs… More

Cristina Fernández focuses on integrating policymakers into startup ecosystems across the world, creating platforms for them to exchange… About the author