The PSF Support to Slovakia was conducted in the context of the national "Strategy to support start-ups and further develop the start-up ecosystem" and the envisaged creation of a start-up committee. Its goal was to provide recommendations on how to promote entrepreneurship and start-ups, how to improve the incubation/acceleration system and how to establish a scheme to support business angels.
In recent years, a small but fully fledged startup ecosystem has started to emerge in Slovakia; this entrepreneurial sector can contribute significantly to the modernisation of the country’s economy, becoming more competitive and innovation-driven; but it must be nurtured by supporting investors and reforming the business environment: these are the findings of the PSF expert panel the Slovak government asked for specific advice. This article summarises their findings, including an overview of their 21 detailed recommendations, grouped into six principal ‘policy messages’.
A ‘Policy Support Facility’ (PSF) has been set up by the Directorate-General for Research & Innovation (DG RTD) of the European Commission under the European Framework Programme for Research & Innovation ‘Horizon 2020’, in order to support Member States and associated countries in reforming their national science, technology and innovation systems. The Slovak authorities expressed their interest in receiving specific support under PSF in the context of the "Strategy to support start-ups and further develop the start-up ecosystem" adopted by the Government of the Slovak Republic in June 2015. The aim of the specific support to Slovakia was to provide guidance and recommendations to: - improve the business environment in order to promote entrepreneurship, start-ups and boost business investments in research and innovation. - improve the incubation/acceleration system in Slovakia and to attract external investors to create new incubators/accelerators. - establish and implement a transparent and effective scheme to support business angels. The PSF expert panel, consisting of four independent experts, worked from April 2016 to August 2016 and arrived at a set of policy messages highlighted upfront in the report. The specific recommendations, 21 in total, provide concrete guidance and a road map for the implementation of the recommended actions.
In this report, the team of experts presents the changes made to the Slovak start-up ecosystem since the presentation of their recommendations in their first report at the end of 2016. As most of the measures are still ‘in the making’, their final materialisation remains somewhat open. Nonetheless, the planned moves suggest substantial efforts on the part of the Slovak government to implement the recommendations.
The expert team visited Bratislava in order to discuss with Slovakian authorities and stakeholders the progress in the implementation of the PSF Specific Support's recommendations. The experts were to provide further assistance and recommendations, if necessary, to improve implementation. In 2016, the PSF Specific Support to Slovakia provided 21 specific recommendations on how to promote entrepreneurship and start-ups, improve the incubation/acceleration system and support business angels.