Krakow’s startup community – role of the government

There is a lively and sometimes angry debate going on in Krakow about how far the city government has been and wants to help us. I’ve written quite long posts about this on some Facebook pages. and thought I’d share them here

A consultation meeting is being held today (9th August) in Krakow has generated a lot of comment,

My comments was here

Thanks for the invitation to attend. I’m not in Krakow.

The questionnaire not the right way to start. We don’t need a new slogan.
We need clear information about what the city is doing and trying to do, we need the opportunity to give feedback about what is useful and should be developed what should be stopped. and what is missing and should be piloted..

The city should start by presenting what is the current situation. What they are doing now, and have a discussion about gaps and challenges taking account of the track record experience and interest of those contributing.
A strategy review starts with three questions
where are we now
where do we want to be
how are we going to get there
Where are we now?
The local government should publish a summary of what they have contributed to the entrepreneurship scene with their zl 15,653,752,43 zł programme.
what have they done to encourage schools to promote enterprise ?
what have they done to encourage banks and financial institutions to promote startups and enterprise?
what have they done to encourage students and academic depts to support enterprise
what have they done to encourage existing businesses to develop and grow
What have they done to encourage government agencies to put support of enterprise higher up their list of priorities.
what have they done to promote their projects and programmes among the thriving start up community in Krakow?
how are are they working with the regional authorities excellent programmes as part of Global Entrepreneurship Week

Local government officials should add details and contact points to community resources like this 

There should be a person/point of contact who regularly posts details of their ideas, events and projects and attends startup community events, makes announcements gives talks, and gets feedback about our needs.

Is there a person whose job it is to collect examples of good practice and celebrate these examples locally and internationally ?

It would be great to know who is responsible for enterprise support on the government side and what we can expect from them,

We need to make sure that the Civil Servants who show up have authority and commitment to change the way Krakow supports and leads economic development.

A successful outcome of the meeting would be

1. publishing of a report of past activities to support enterprise

2. publishing current plans, and targets

3. Establishing an agreed and planned feedback process to take account of the views of important stake holders in the local community, not just the people who happen to be available at short notice for this meeting.

On 9th August an article here  – in Polish – praising Krakow’s startup community by Dominika Baranowska- is provoking a debate about how far the government is supporting  – or not – the startup community in Krakow and prompted my comment below 

“A lot of other people were involved in making this happen – here are only a selected few.

Rafał Styczeń was an early adopter with

Ramon set up this page,
and gave this TEDxKrakow talk Krakow: Europe’s Silicon Valley?

Ela and Piotr set up Hive which led to Open Coffee Krakow

GfE have been fabulous

So is Hub.raum

Krakow Tech Park has been surprisingly good for a government owned agency

the regional authority has done a lot with Global Entrepreneurship Week

This project still has global potential, but has yet to spread – first with Paul, and for the last four years Ewa thereafter has been a powerful force for spreading many great ideas both from Krakow – big like Agata Wilam’s Childrens University and small like the Pan Cogito hotel and bringing new ideas to Krakow and Poland.

To keep up with the community developed check out

for more ideas worth worth spreading and projects worth promoting

and if you want your organisation to be involved get listed here

Innovation Nest – responsible for Startup Stage and Proidea for Bitspiration are already and deservedly mentioned


Four years ago I proposed this

my proposed sketch up of enterprise support eco system

my proposed sketch up of enterprise support eco system

as a way for the government to map out our eco system. it still hasn’t happened 

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