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innovation DAILY

Here we highlight selected innovation related articles from around the world on a daily basis.  These articles related to innovation and funding for innovative companies, and best practices for innovation based economic development.

Entrepreneur investors launching a $5 million investment fund for new ventures in medical devices and health care services.

Wealthy entrepreneurs who made their mark in the region's health-care sector want to seed a new wave of business growth.

Up to 20 investors, led by some of the region's most successful health care executives, are launching a $5 million investment fund for new ventures in medical devices and health care services.

Entrepreneurship as a Safety Net

Is entrepreneurship the new safety net? In a viewpoint column this week, Chris Farrell suggests that corporate careers have become more uncertain than ever, and young people are looking to microenterprises for stability.

Corporate loyalty used to work both ways, with loyal employees being rewarded with long-term job security. That model began to fall apart with mass layoffs in the 1970s, Farrell notes. Now that pay cuts and furloughs — once shunned even by corporations laying off workers — have become commonplace, he suggests, workers see less value and stability in corporate careers. Along with bolstering savings, workers are looking to microbusinesses as a hedge against the risk of layoffs or pay cuts:

Israeli Innovation

The latest issue of the City Journal includes an article on the unmatched economic and scientific accomplishments achieved by Israel in its short history. The high-tech industry dominates the Israeli economy and the author includes some interesting statistics regarding the country’s global standing in the technology sector. As of 2007, Israel houses more foreign NASDAQ-traded companies than any other country. Notably, the author writes:

Connecting the Developing World | RESON

The GSMA reports that there are well over 4 billion cell phone subscriptions worldwide. Over 50% of the world’s population has a cell phone now. Think for a moment about your cell phone: what it means and how you use it. Would you miss it if it were lost? I rely on my cell phone which I use as a phone, calculator, alarm clock, weather person, calendar, and research tool. I write notes to myself, notes to others, track my finances, schedule meetings and organize my time. I program my phone which, in return, programs my life.

French for Entrepreneur

Could the French fondness for a single job for life be giving away to a new spirit of entrepreneurialism? The number of new private businesses launched in France is soaring. June saw an all-time record, and figures in July were only slightly off that pace. French officials estimate that by the end of 2009 France will be about half a million new firms better off. In 2008 just 328,000 small companies were created, and in 2007 the figure was 321,000.

Chinese Gov't pledges strong support for innovation-based SMEs during downturn

BEIJING, Aug. 31 (Xinhua) -- Science and Technology Minister Wan Gang said Monday China's government would provide strong support for small-and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to help them tide over the current economic downturn.

"The most effective way to withstand the impact of the global economic meltdown is to accelerate technological innovation, the new economic growth engine," Wan said in a signed article on the front page of Monday's Study Times, run by the Party School of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China.

Digital 21 - Entrepreneurship: Cultivating the art of the start

Now that we have realised the false economy that comes with selling houses to one another, the nation is in a fight for economic survival and amongst the 430,000 people now on the live register there are surely entrepreneurs who can be encouraged to establish their own businesses.

But small businesses, which are the lifeblood of the Irish economy, are battling against a situation whereby the banks that their own Government has bailed out are refusing credit. This does not bode well for entrepreneurs who need to access start-up capital. So creative means must be identified as a matter of urgency to ensure that access to seed capital and supports to enter overseas markets exist.

Boston Innovation Culture 4 -- Equity Culture

A few posts back I reported on work I’ve done comparing innovation in Boston and California. I argued that Silicon Valley beats Boston by a mile in it’s “recombination” capability: quick focus of energy and resources on new opportunities like the PC and the internet. Recombination is enabled by three things: an entrepreneurial community, “open” systems, and an equity culture. [There is a link to the complete presentation, Strengthening the Massachusetts Innovation Culture, at the end of this post.]

BusinessWeek Blog on Corporate Tax Reform:
Turning Corporate Taxes into an Innovation Spur

As Michael Mandel has written in BusinessWeek, the current U.S. recession is due in part to a shortfall in innovation and competitiveness.  Those lags, in turn, can be traced to the U.S. corporate tax code.  U.S. statutory and effective corporate tax rates are high compared to those of other nations.  Moreover, the code provides only minimal incentives for companies to invest in the building blocks of innovation: research, new capital equipment, and labor skills.  It is time to redesign the tax code to help turbocharge the U.S. innovation engine.  Doing so will improve U.S. competitiveness, not only by reducing international tax differentials, but by also spurring more domestic investment in research and development, productivity-enchancing capital expenditures, and worker training.

Read the BusinessWeek Blog.