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Toward an Innovative Poland: The Entrepreneurial Discovery Process and Business Needs Analysis


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Since the beginning of postsocialist transition in 1989, Poland has more than doubled its GDP per capita, coming in ahead of all European peers. However, with only two-thirds of the level of income of the euro zone, Poland is still far from full convergence with the West. It needs to innovate in order to close the income gap.

In collaboration with Poland’s Ministry of Economic Development, the World Bank designed and tested a new approach - called an “entrepreneurial discovery process (EDP)” - to help the authorities shift from a top-down to a bottom-up innovation policy that engages the private sector, science, and public administration, as part of the so-called “research and innovation smart specialization strategy-RIS3”.

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The proposed EDP comprised: (i) in-depth firm interviews, (ii) “Smart Labs” – business-science focus groups, (iii) crowdsourcing, and (iv) innovation maps.

The project helped produce new information about the needs, strengths and ambitions of the enterprise sector, identify companies with a large innovation-based growth potential, so-called “champions”, and modernize the public support system to provide support better tailored to firm needs. The project should help Poland’s government to more efficiently invest 10 billion euro into innovation by 2020, mostly funded by the European Union.

The whole database from more than 500 firm-level interviews in the EDP project in Poland has been made available to all the users in the form of an interactive Tableau Dashboard. It is available in the link below:

Poland EDP dataset in interactive Tableau Dashboard

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