Supporting city and local government innovation

City and local government authorities can be more innovative in the way they work, share data and stimulate local innovation. Characteristics of innovative local governments While there is no single pathway to success, there are characteristics that high-performing city and local governments share: First, innovative city and local government authorities make sure that very different…

Better business regulations create jobs

Business environment reform for job creation I this post, I explore how business environment reform nurtures job creation. The World Bank’s annual Doing Business assessment was released today with some important claims regarding the impact of regulatory reform on job creation. There has been much debate over the years about the significance of the link…

The global economy drives SME growth and job creation

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) play an important role in economic development and job creation. While the general features of this role are understood, there are many features of this that require more research. Of particular interest to countries and regions around the world is the importance of the traded economy –– that part of…

Recipes for growth, democracy (entrepreneurship and innovation) in an increasingly integrated world economy

BOOKS REVIEWED Dani Rodrik (2007) One economics, many recipes; globalization, institutions and economic growth, Princeton University Press, Princeton Dani Rodrik (2011) The globalization paradox; why markets, states and democracies can’t coexist, Oxford University Press, Oxford Dani Rodrik is the Rafiq Hariri Professor of International Political Economy at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard…

The Kafka Brigade and the "strangling and depersonalising effect of bureaucracy"

Franz Kafka wrote about the strangling and depersonalising effect of bureaucracy. The Kafka Brigade reminds us that people using services have a lot to say about improving them – if only we would listen. Kafka Brigade is an independent, non-profit action research team, comprising a network of action researchers from Amsterdam and the Hague (NL),…

MindLab –– a platform for co-creating better ideas.

Here’s a Danish initiative designed to promote innovation within government while breaking down government silos. MindLab is a cross-ministerial innovation unit which involves citizens and businesses in creating new solutions for society – “a neutral zone for inspiring creativity, innovation and collaboration”. MindLab works with civil servants of three Danish ministries: Ministry of Business and Growth Ministry…

Private Sector and Enterprise Development Fostering Growth in MENA

Private Sector and Enterprise Development; Fostering Growth in the Middle East and North Africa is a 2010 book published by Canada’s International Development Research Centre (IDRC) and written by Lois Stevenson, a Visiting Research Fellow at the IDRC in Cairo, Egypt. The book is concerned with the context for private sector development (PSD) including micro, small and medium enterprises (SMEs1), the PSD…

Accelerating Entrepreneurship in the Arab World

This month, the World Economic Forum (WEF) and the Forum of Young Global Leaders (YGL), in collaboration with Booz & Company,  launched the Accelerating Entrepreneurship in the Arab World report, which highlights ten recommendations to promote a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem across the region. Policy-makers, business leaders, academia and civil society leaders are all aiming to…

Doing Business 2012

The World Bank Group’s Doing Business team have just released the annual report for this year: Doing Business 2012: Doing Business in a More Transparent World.  This is the ninth in a series of annual reports comparing business regulations in 183 economies. It measures regulations affecting 11 areas of everyday business activity. “During this time of…

Boulevard of Broken Dreams

Josh Lerner (2009) Boulevard of Broken Dreams: why public efforts to boost entrepreneurship and venture capital have failed–and what to do about it, Princeton University Press, Princeton Discussing the complex history of Silicon Valley and other pioneering centers of venture capital, Josh Lerner uncovers the extent of government influence in prompting growth. He examines the public…

Promoting competitive industries in a high-growth country

This interesting post from the World Bank’s blog on private sector development cites Ricardo Hausmann, Professor of Economic Development at the John F. Kennedy School of Government and Director of Harvard’s Center of International Development and Dani Rodrik, Professor of International Political Economy at the Kennedy School and their observations on India and its high levels…

Creating entrepreneurial business environments

A key ingredient of entrepreneurship is risk. Doing things differently, inventing and producing different things, and providing different services… all this entails risk. Entrepreneurs invest in doing things differently and the outcomes of this investment are unpredictable. In fact, these investments are more likely to fail than not. Governments stifle entrepreneurship in Africa through policy…

The role of government

In efforts to promote entrepreneurship and innovation most attention is given how to development entrepreneurs. While it is generally recognised that there is no entrepreneurial gene that is passed on from one generation to the next and that entrepreneurs are made and not born entrepreneurial, a high degree of attention is given in some quarters…