Project Details

Title: Improvement of Methodologies and Governance of European Entrepreneurship Network
Priority: 1: Innovation and the knowledge economy
Theme: Entrepreneurship and SMEs

Type of intervention

Type of intervention: 1: Regional Initiative Project
Mini-programme: No
Duration: 1st Jan 2010 - 31st Dec 2012


Total budget: €1,074,968.00
ERDF contribution: €813,122.80

Lead partner

Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Lyon
Place de la Bourse
69289, LYON cedex 02

  • Click for contact details
    • Contact Person: Claire Delsuc
      Phone: +33 4 72 40 56 92
      Fax: +33 4 72 40 59 45

Project summary

Business creation generates both growth and employment. Therefore, encouraging people to become entrepreneurs is a strategic goal to exploit the endogenous potential of territories and to maintain the competitiveness of EU regions. Start-up support policies are also an innovative marketing tool for EU territories because they increase their attractiveness, .


Many EU regions have implemented policies which aim at increasing the number of new companies but also at improving the quality and sustainability of those companies (average survival rates in the main EU regions is about 60% 3 years after creation). Pre-start and post-start support has an impact on sustainibility but with an increasing number of would-be entrepreneurs and limited public resources, we have to maximise their efficiency.

Some regions have also fostered networking between those involved in the business creation process.

Implementing such networks and governance models enables technical issues and best practice to be shared, relative contribution to successful start up to be evaluated and improves the visibility of support services.


The key objective of IMAGEEN is to benchmark best practice governance models and support methodologies. We will publish an Entrepreneurship Management Guide describing those best practices, analysing how they can be best transfered, and making recommendations to policy makers to improve the efficiency of entrepreneurship policy both locally and at the EU level.

This will be disseminated to all local stakeholders and policy makers but also on a European level at a large-scale EU dissemination event.

The IMAGEEN project will benefit from a large audience to disseminate its results and outputs since the project is supported by local policy makers and by ECER (European Cities Entrepreneurship Ranking) which each year organizes meetings for the TOP 40

Entrepreneurship Cities in Europe, within the EUROCITIES network.

Throughout the project, study visits will be organized to enable us to understand and describe precisely local practice in terms of governance (networking, monitoring systems) and support methodologies. Good practice and local issues will be highlighted.

This work will progressively enable us to build our Guide.


IMAGEEN partners will test out the transfer of best practice in their territories. An innovative entrepreneurship monitoring system will be jointly tested. One expected output of IMAGEEN is a common entrepreneurship barometer (10 permanent common indicators giving a global picture and enabling comparisons between EU Regions).


IMAGEEN will build an EU-wide network dedicated to the improvement of entrepreneurship policies and tools. One expected output of IMAGEEN is a concrete network methodology to enable IMAGEEN partner network sustainability and bring in new EU partners.

Project achievements

After 3 years of implementation, the IMAGEEN Project (0875R2) coordinated by the Chamber of Commerce of Lyon, France, identified 16 good practices in the 7 partner organisations. Entrepreneurship is a high priority issue for policy makers throughout the EU. The practices presented by the IMAGEEN partners fall into two main categories: support methodologies and governance. Their focus is on the promotion of entrepreneurship, ante-creation support services and financing of business projects, but also on how business support structure organise themselves in order to ensure both coherence and efficiency. The IMAGEEN project has started with a Kick-Off Meeting in Lyon in June 2010 allowing the partners to commit, discuss methodologies and approaches to develop in the project. Two practices were presented: the 'LVE Governance' network of support structures and the 'Project Diagnosis' which helps entrepreneurs identify their projects weaknesses and strengths to carry out actions.

Project activities started with a study visit in Warsaw in June 2010 which focused on the good practices 'Capital of Ambitious Business', 'Innovation Potential City' and 'Mazovian Found of Credit Sureties'. Four good practices were presented in Gothenburg in December 2011: 'Business Emergency', a free of charge service to rescue business from bankruptcy, 'Expedition Forward', a growth programme for SMEs, Brew House, an incubator for creative industries and 'Mind your own Business', a one-stop agency that offers guidance and support for people who want to start up businesses. In Gothenburg, the Consortium agreed to reinforce the agenda for 2011 in order to further enhance the exchange of good practices and work on an in-depth understanding of the practices. In 2011, the study visits took place in Munich, Birmingham, Turin and Granada who presented in detail 6 additional good practices. In total, the project has brought to light 16 good practices. Building on the knowledge exchanged in

IMAGEEN, the partners developed a guide presenting these 16 good practices. Three 'return' visits were organized in Lyon, Gothenburg and Munich for the interested partners to ask all their questions to the “teacher” partner. The Lead Partner and the partner responsible for the experimentations of good practices attended a session at the OECD to exchange on entrepreneurship indicators. IMAGEEN partners have indeed agreed to find common indicators of their action in favor of entrepreneurship and to put into perspective not only the effect of supporting structures on business creation but also to look into the macro-economic contexts and long-term impacts of their action on socio-economic indicators. At the end of 2011, they developed the opportunities of transfer of all the partners and planned the conditions for each local experimentation. Activities in 2012 include an in-depth meeting in Munich, an exchange of practices between Lyon and Gothenburg, two

Steering Committee meetings, the finalisation of all the SWOT analyses, the involvement of local stakeholders to understand the benefits of the practices and the interest of developing them on their territory to make them sustainable. The Final Dissemination Event took place on 26.10.2012 during the World Entrepreneurship Forum in Lyon. IMAGEEN partners took part in the INTERREG IVC Thematic Workshop for Entrepreneurship projects. The IMAGEEN Entrepreneurship Management Guide records the collective achievements of the network, and identifies the strengths of the approach and the current difficulties faced. It is intended as a testament to the work of the local institutions, and also sets out their ideas and an action plan on how the work will move forward for the years to come. The partners hope that this document can serve as an inspiring tool to reflect on possible improvements not only in the way to conceive entrepreneurship but also as a key element of the virtuous growth circle.


Institution, Town Country Region Contact details
Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Lyon, LYON cedex 02 FRANCE Rhône-Alpes +33 4 72 40 56 92
Province of Turin, Torino ITALY Piemonte 0039 011 861 2389
City of Warsaw, Warszawa POLAND Mazowieckie +48 22 656 63 68
City of Munich - Department of Labor and Economic Development, Muenchen GERMANY Oberbayern 0049 (0) 89 233 213 32
Business Region Göteborg AB, Göteborg SWEDEN Västsverige +46-(0)31-61 24 02
Birmingham Chamber of Commerce, Birmingham UNITED KINGDOM West Midlands +44 121 607 1870
County Council of Granada, Granada SPAIN Andalucía +34 958 804947


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