The entrepreneurship policy of the European Union has been shaped in three key policy areas: small and medium-sized enterprises, innovation and competitiveness. The present investigation will focus mainly on the first of these. The paper briefly overviews the conceptual and programmatic background of the EU’s policies in that domain; discusses the current focus on quantitative targets, selected areas and national policies as an innovative experiment; and shows how, in the absence ofa clear policy model, the comparison with the USA offers a functional surrogate device for identifying various policy areas to be targeted. The paper concludes that, despite its rhetoric, the EU does not have a central vision or strategy, but that what seems to be a flaw, i.e. an ad hoc innovative approach consisting of a combination of national-level experiments, might ultimately be a strength.
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Citation: Aligica, Paul Dragos and Mirela State. "Ambiguity, Imitation and Innovation: Notes on the Conceptual and Operational Facets of the European Union's Approach to Entrepreneurship Policy." International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation 6, no. 4 (2005): 249-258.