European champions in entrepreneurialism

Skövde Municipality and Gothia Science Park are European champions in entrepreneurialism. The award was presented to Skövde in connection with the European Enterprise Awards in the Czech Republic on 13 May 2009.

Skövde Municipality’s investment in Gothia Science Park was one of a total of 350 European entries in the competition. Of these, 47 were selected to face a jury led by Maive Rute, Director of the department for increased competitiveness for small and medium-sized companies, European Commission, that subsequently nominated a total of 13 entries for five different awards.
“These entries truly are the best of the best,” emphasised the Chairman of the jury when the entries were presented.
At the award ceremony and gala dinner in Prague on 13 May, Gothia Science Park was named as the winner of the Enterprise Development Award category. The award was presented for having excellent conditions for start-ups as well as the development and growth of small and medium-sized companies.
“The award is confirmation of the fantastic work we do,” commented Patric Eriksson, CEO of Gothia Innovation that manages and develops Gothia Science Park.
He received the backing of Günther Verheugen, the Vice President of the European Commission responsible for enterprise and industry, and initiator of the establishment of the award:
“The innovative work methods demonstrated by the 2009 winners of the enterprise awards can inspire others and act as concrete examples and suggestions for activities on a regional and local level. In order for us to achieve our common goal of making the EU the best environment for small and medium-sized companies, I wish to urge all of you to take advantage of the experiences and best examples presented in this competition.”

The purpose of the EU award

The European Enterprise Awards, established by the European Commission in 2005, acknowledges and rewards initiatives that support entrepreneurialism on a regional level. The competition aims to:

  • acknowledge and give recognition to successful initiators within enterprise and entrepreneurialism
  • show examples of excellent entrepreneurialism and work methods used
  • increase knowledge about the added value that entrepreneurialism can bring to the market economy
  • encourage and inspire potential entrepreneurs – all EU member states and associated countries can nominate projects for the competition

The candidates must be able to demonstrate that their activities have gradually facilitated business enterprise and strengthened the region’s economy. Applications are judged based on the following criteria:

  • originality and practicability
  • impact on the local economy
  • improvement of ties between local interested parties