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Current projects


Below is a list of the projects in which UEAPME is involved at the moment.

Early Warning Project

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The overall objective of Early Warning Europe is to promote entrepreneurship and growth of SMEs across Europe. A key element is to create strong framework conditions for entrepreneurs and businesses across sectors that can help them face key challenges, including managing a crisis, dealing with bankruptcy and getting a second chance.

The project Early Warning Europe is providing advice and support to companies in distress. Such interventions can help prevent bankruptcies and its negative consequences such as job losses, increased economic risk for suppliers in the company value chain, and a potential economic, social and personal deroute for the company owners and their families.

An early intervention will increase the likelihood of a turnaround of the company resulting in a stable economic situation for the company and even sustainable growth. Moreover, if a company in distress is closed down at an early stage of the crisis, the intervention can help avoid an unsurmountable debt for the company owner thus giving him or her the chance to start a new venture (2nd Chance).

- Website: http://www.earlywarningeurope.eu/
- Contact: Véronique Willems

R2π

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R2π – tRansition from linear 2 circular: Policy and Innovation is a three-year project within the environment theme of Horizon 2020 (H2020). R2π (the R represents the linear “radius” while the π symbolises the circle) project began in November 2016 and is due to end in October 2019 with a total funding of 3 million Euros.

The aim of the R2π project is to highlight sustainable business models for circular economy and to propose "Policy Packages" that will support such business models. This will be achieved by analysing a substantial amount of case studies covering different sectors and countries followed by a quantitative analysis. The accumulated knowledge will enable the project partners to identify best practices and develop the R2π toolbox and policy guidelines to support both business and policy makers.

UEAPME has the following main roles in the project: 1) contribute to validate the recommendations to extend the general taking up of circular economy thanks to the implication of its own network, 2) advertising the organisation of the Green Alley Collaboration Space, hosting joint projects/initiatives for collaboration between circular economy start-ups and larger players as well as workshops to incite larger organisations to seek inspiration from those circular economy start-ups and 3) disseminating information on the development and on the results of the project inside and outside its network.

- Website: http://www.r2piproject.eu
- Contact: Guido Lena

ENVISION - Business Makeover

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The ENVISION project aims at activating their business models. In the current economic environment, business model innovation will accelerate the revenue growth of the small European companies. ENVISION gathers nine partners and their European wide networks to support business model innovation in 20 million European SMEs.

- Website: http://www.businessmakeover.eu
- Contact: Gerhard Huemer

SBS - Small Business Standards

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SBS is a European non-profit association (aisbl) established with the support of the European Commission to represent European SMEs in the standard making process at European and international levels. The SBS goal is to represent and defend SME interests in the standardisation process at European and international level. Moreover, it aims at raising SME awareness about the benefits of standards and at encouraging them to get involved in the standardisation process.

SBS was created to meet the European Union’s aspiration to make the standardisation system as inclusive, transparent and open as possible. This aspiration is well enshrined in the European Regulation 1025/2012 on the European Standardisation System. Acknowledging shortcomings and challenges in the system, this fundamental piece of legislation recognises the necessary role of public authorities in supporting SMEs in the standard making process. This support is concretely presented by the European Commission DG Enterprise and Industry with a co-financing grant for the actions taken by SBS.

- Website: http://www.sbs-sme.eu
- Contact: Christel Davidson

QA HiVET: Promoting and Implementing European Principles of Quality Assurance in Higher Vocational Education and Training

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For several years the EU Institutions have stressed the importance of vocational education and training (VET) for the employability of (young) people and the economic competitiveness and growth as well as for promoting social cohesion. In many countries strategies to foster VET focus, however, largely on initial VET. Higher VET leading to qualifications on European Qualifications Framework levels 5 to 8, are often neglected or underestimated. Though Quality Assurance mechanisms are in place in HiVET as well, there are no European reference guidelines, nor mechanisms uniformly defined at national levels. The absence of such common QA guidelines has become evident during the implementation of national qualifications frameworks. As a consequence HiVET qualifications are often underrated, i.e. there is no parity of esteem between qualifications from the higher academic education and the HiVET.

The main objective of the QA HiVET is to promote parity of esteem between these two educational pillars by defining “European Guidelines and Principles on Quality Assurance in Higher VET”. It should serve as a European reference for all HiVET providers and qualification awarding bodies. In order to strengthen the cooperation among these institutions, a “European Network on Quality Assurance in Higher VET” should be established that keeps the subject matter on the political agenda also beyond the project and develop the guidelines further.

A partnership of six organisations has been formed to meet the objectives of this project. Five national organisations from Austria, Belgium, France, Germany and Greece as well as UEAPME.

- Website: www.qa-hivet.net
- Contact: Liliane Volozinskis

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The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

East Invest 2

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The East Invest 2 project, implemented by a consortium of UEAPME and Eurochambres, aims to increase the capacity of the SME associations in the EaP countries (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldavia, Ukraine) to take an active role in promoting a conducive business environment. It will improve the participation of SMEs in the public private dialogue, supports the participation of SMEs in the DCFTA (Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area) and facilitates long-term partnerships between Business Organisations as well as SMEs from the EU and the EaP countries.

The following activities are carried out in the framework of the project:

  • Twinning between Business Support Organisations from the Eastern Partnership countries and the EU with a duration of max. 24 months
  • BSO Academies for representatives of Business Support Organisations (BSO) from the Eastern Partnership Countries
  • Short Term Exchange between EU and EaP Business Support Organisations
  • SME Academies offering training directly to SMEs in the Eastern Partnership countries
  • Public Private Dialogue National Action Plan for each of the Eastern Partnership countries

- Website: http://www.east-invest2.eu/
- Contact: Doris Rabetge

SME Academy in Chisinau (May 2017): http://realitatealive.md/live-cerem...

Private sector business organisations from Eastern Partnership countries demand better business climate for SMEs - Press Release on Annual Conference 2017 in Kiev

East Invest 2 regional position paper

27/10/2017: Private Sector speaks out for a better business environment in the Eastern Partnership Region