Global Entrepreneurship Week 2011 will see more than 40,000 events held across the world this week, but nothing will take place to mark the initiative in Australia.
Created by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, Global Entrepreneurship Week is an annual week-long series of activities designed to boost entrepreneurialism.
In three years, GEW has expanded to more than 120 countries, helping nearly 20 million people. Throughout the week, participants gain access to potential mentors, collaborators and investors.
There are no eligibility criteria to meet – anyone can take part in the activities, which include virtual and face-to-face events, competitions and networking opportunities.
GEW 2011, which kicked off yesterday, will see more than 25,000 partner organisations host 40,000 events across countries including the US, Canada, Egypt, Ireland, Norway and Romania.
Australia will not host any events this year, although Australian entrepreneurs are still encouraged to participate any way they can.
EMKF chief executive Carl Schramm says GEW draws together students, entrepreneurs, educators, business leaders and government officials “to spread the power of entrepreneurship”.
“It’s during this time that we celebrate the innovators who bring ideas to life, drive economic growth and expand human welfare,” Schramm said in a statement.
This year, one of the largest pockets of activity will take place in the US. Some of the activities and competitions taking place include:
- Startup Weekend. 20 US cities, and more than 40 others around the world, will play host to events that move entrepreneurs from idea to launch in 54 hours.
- Movers & Changers Forum. Finalists in this competition will compete for $25,000 in seed funds to help start their companies.
- Cleantech Open Global Ideas Competition. Entrepreneurs pitch clean technology ideas to investors for the chance to win $100,000 in support and services.
Other events include:
- Global Student Entrepreneur Awards. Students across the globe compete for $150,000 in cash and business services, plus mentoring from RedBox founder Mike DeLazzer.
- Global Women’s Summit. Hosted by the Kauffman Foundation, the summit attendees discuss the role and impact of female entrepreneurs in the current economy.
- Global Innovation Game. A global challenge on Facebook encourages an international community of players to buy, sell and create solutions to problems facing the world.
- Kairos Discussion Challenge. Kairos Society Fellows, representing students from universities around the world, face an open challenge to develop solutions to the global hunger crisis through venture creation.