This report presents the findings of a research project exploring the involvement of new partners – in particular, the social partners, civil society and people in vulnerable situations – in social innovation. The research was carried out at EU level – focusing especially on the role of the European Social Fund (ESF) in social innovation – and in six Member States: Austria, Bulgaria, Ireland, Italy, Poland and Sweden. It examined the innovation and social partnership culture in each country, and analysed to what extent national-level policies have been triggered by EU policy.
European cities are increasingly faced with the challenge of integrating people from very diverse backgrounds. As migrant populations increase, so do the opportunities for new business, job creation and international competitiveness. This report shows that ethnic entrepreneurs, however small their venture, contribute to the economic growth of their local area, often rejuvenate neglected crafts and trades, and participate increasingly in the provision of higher value-added services. They can help to promote stronger trading links with their home countries and foster social cohesion in their host communities. The report examines what city authorities are doing to attract ethnic entrepreneurs into their established business communities, and to facilitate the business environment – from the purely financial to providing training and advice.