IESE joins international initiative to support the most innovative SMEs and startups

IESE has joined the project GO-SME, funded by the EU program Horizon 2020, aimed at sharing the experience with the support of startups and small and medium enterprises and level differences in the form and quality of support across individual EU members.

The GO-SME project brings together national and regional agencies supporting research and innovation from 12 European countries. The common interest of agencies lies in exchanging experiences and developing common quality standards for the preparation of national and regional support schemes for innovative start-ups.

Selected partners, including IESE, will then validate the proposed procedures in a pilot call for proposals, to be implemented before the project’s official end in 2023. In this call, international evaluators will select the best startups that will receive tailor-made professional coaching and financial contribution to further development of their product or service with global potential.

The project has started in May 2021 and in the next 2 years will focus on the following activities:

  • learning from best practices already applied in support schemes for innovative SMEs and startups,
  • increasing the motivation of agencies from widening countries to design innovation support schemes for SMEs and start-ups,
  • cooperation in designing comparable support schemes with the sets of similar criteria,
  • sharing best practices in the work with (international) projects’ evaluators and sharing their pools,
  • learning from best practices in providing coaching and mentoring services to innovative SMEs and start-ups,
  • setting up and sharing mutual pools of coaches and mentors,
  • offering special services to running projects which will be selected as the most promising by an independent international panel.

After completing the pilot call and finalizing the recommendations, the GO-SME project has the ambition to become part of the European support scheme for innovative SMEs, EIC Accelerator, in the form of the so-called plug-in mechanism. At the same time, it can serve as a pilot project for a possible partnership co-funded from innovation ecosystems in the Horizon Europe programme.

List of partners:

  • Technology Agency of the Czech Republic (TA CR), Czech Republic,
  • Service Public Wallonie (SPW-EER), Belgium,
  • Startup Europe Regions Network (SERN), Belgium,
  • Ettevõtluse Arendamise Sihtasutus (EAS), Estonia,
  • German Aerospace Center (DLR), Germany,
  • National Research and Development Office (NRDI), Hungary
  • Invitalia, Italy,
  • Agency for Science, Innovation and Technology (MITA), Lithuania,
  • Luxinnovation (LXI), Luxemburg,
  • Ministry for Research, Innovation and the Co-ordination of Post Covid-19 Strategy (MRIC), Malta,
  • National Innovation Agency of Portugal (ANI), Portugal,
  • Ministry of Economy of the Slovak Republic (MoE SR), Slovakia,
  • Centre for the Development of Industrial Technology (CDTI), Spain,
  • Catalan Agency for Business Competitiveness (ACCIÓ), Spain,
  • IESE Business school of University of Navarra (IESE), Spain.

See also the web pages of the project: