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Top of Mind's 5 Must Read Articles in Entrepreneurship

Thom Ruhe

In perusing last week's headlines (and a few stragglers from the week prior), I realized I was drawn to numerous articles pertaining to entrepreneurial support beyond that in the United States. For those who don't know, my work at Kauffman allows me to travel a bit--about 100,000 miles a year to be exact. And while traveling this much often sends me into "autopilot" mode (a survival skill that allows me to motion through flight check-in, security screening, and boarding process without a thought or emotion), nothing snaps me back into reality or awakens me with a new eagerness to learn than walking off a plane and stepping into a different county with its own entrepreneurial culture.

Entrepreneurship has been the engine of the U.S. economy for centuries and now, the world is embracing it as a primary means of economic recovery, independence and competitiveness. From every end of the earth it seems, nations are identifying their own areas for opportunity and capitalizing on those learnings in ways that allow them to educate, promote and support innovators and founders, helping them grow their companies. From these travels, I take away several conclusions:

1. Entrepreneurship transcends borders and languages; but is deeply impacted by culture and policy.

2. Our support (and others), educational programs and research & policy leadership is desperately needed (and sought) everywhere.  

3. We are privileged we had a founder that understood the value to nurturing entrepreneurship at all levels of society.

I’m happy to see media outlets taking note of these efforts and sharing them with their readers.

Canada Pledges $1.5-Billion for Research That Fosters Competitiveness - February 12, 2014         

The Canadian government has created the Canada First Research Excellence Fund. This fund is a part of the new federal budget and will provide $1.5 billion Canadian dollars over 10 years to support university research. This will contribute to the country’s long-term economic competitiveness.

Israel Launches World’s First Accelerator For Startups That Benefit The Disabled -  February 18, 2014

Israel is launching the world’s first accelerator focused on solutions to the needs of the disabled. PresenTense has partnered with Beit Issie Shapiro and The Rudeman Family Foundation to launch this accelerator. This accelerator or program consists of three steps: establishing a community, the accelerator and the launch of the product.

Skills, infrastructure, local investment: Nigeria’s tech challenges - February 18, 2014

Nigeria currently has an estimated population of just over 170-million and an internet audience of more than 55-million, its 33% internet penetration means 67% of opportunity. Currently the only African country listed as the next economic powerhouse with the MINT alliance, Nigeria’s growth is remarkable. It seems the minister recognizes that opportunity.

Brazil losing its appeal for private equity and venture capital - February 20, 2014  

Cate Ambrose, president of Lavca stated the following “Brazil is simply 5-10 years ahead of the rest of Latin America in terms of the development of the private equity market.” Most of the small businesses in Mexico, Peru, Colombia would rather go bankrupt than sell out to a private equity firm.

Qatar steps up support for SMEs - February 19, 2014
A drive aimed at encouraging Qatar’s citizens to set up in business is gaining pace, as the government moves to increase the private sector’s contribution to the national economy through regulatory changes and stronger support for entrepreneurs. 

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