Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Regional Development
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Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Regional Development

Edited by David Smallbone, Markku Virtanen and Arnis Sauka

Entrepreneurship and innovation are arguably the main drivers of economic development today. This book explores the two in depth, at both the national and regional levels, using a variety of methodologies. The expert contributors discuss the subject from a policy perspective, with case studies from a host of countries including new member states of the EU as well as established EU member states. Split into three parts, the book focuses on: innovation, entrepreneurial activity and regional development, and entrepreneurship and SME policy.
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Chapter 5: Towards Europe: the Small Business Charter and SME policy upgrading in the Western Balkans

Stephen Roper and Anita Richter


Since 2003 the seven countries comprising the Western Balkans have been involved in a process of small business policy development following their adoption of the European Charter for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). This initiative has involved policy benchmarking exercises in 2007, 2009 and 2012 and a more continuous series of capacity-building workshops and policy networking events. This chapter considers the effectiveness of this initiative as an example of policy transfer. In brief, while the Charter Process does seem to have achieved its broad objective of stimulating and upgrading SME policy development, it has perhaps been less effective in terms of its objectives to help countries identify and remedy specific policy weaknesses.

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