As Global Entrepreneurship Week comes to a close in the US and 88 countries around the world, U.S. President Barack Obama has issued a proclamation supporting those efforts, proclaiming November 16 - 22 to be a national Entrepreneurship Week. In doing so, Obama called "upon all Americans to recognize the important contributions of entrepreneurs to our economy." The statement comes as thousands of organizations are in the midst of hosting events designed to inspire young people to unleash their creative ideas and turn them into job-producing, sustainable businesses. The official proclamation is:
Throughout our history, American entrepreneurs have been an effective force for innovation at home and around the world. From the airplane to the Internet search engine to new tractors, they have pioneered technologies, products, and processes that have improved lives and shaped the course of our future. Today, they are fueling our economy with their creativity, tireless work ethic, and risk-taking spirit. During National Entrepreneurship Week, we renew our commitment to supporting American entrepreneurs, including social entrepreneurs, who are spreading opportunity and prosperity across our Nation.
Entrepreneurs are the engine of job creation in America, generating millions of good jobs. Many begin with nothing more than a good idea, and translate new products and services into vibrant businesses. To secure our Nation's future prosperity, we must ensure that our entrepreneurs have the tools they need to survive and thrive.
My Administration is working to provide opportunities and conditions for entrepreneurs to succeed. We are supporting the flow of credit by increasing loan guarantees and reducing borrowing fees to help more Americans start businesses. We also made the Research and Experimentation Tax Credit permanent to help burgeoning companies afford the high costs of developing new products and technologies. The recently formed Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the Department of Commerce is building on these efforts with new policies and initiatives to unleash creativity and innovation, as well as turn inspired ideas into new employment-generating businesses.
Our Nation led the world's economies in the 20th century because we led the world in innovation. To strengthen our position in the 21st century, we must rededicate ourselves to harnessing the creative spirit that has made America great.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim November 16 through November 22, 2009, as National Entrepreneurship Week. I call upon all Americans to recognize the important contributions of entrepreneurs to our economy.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this nineteenth day of November, in the year of our Lord two thousand nine, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-fourth.
Over the last week we have seen Global Entrepreneurship Week grow into an entrepreneurial movement across the globe. There have been activities in communities in more than 90 countries. People have been following the news about GEW in our newsroom. But that has not been the only place where people have been able to follow what has been happening for the Week. GEW has started a movement on Twitter. If you are following @unleashingideas or any of the country campaigns you have surely seen all the updates. There has also been a hashtag - #GEW - that has made following the activities even easier. There are still two days left until the Week is officially over, but let's recap some of the top tweets from the last five days.
The opening day of Global Entrepreneurship Week was a busy day with big events everywhere. Mexico had an opening ceremony that included a panel on the challenge of undertaking to change the world:
@GEWMexico: GEW Mexico ha sido inaugurado, con el panel "El reto de emprender para cambiar al mundo" en el auditorio de NAFIN, Ciudad de México.
In the United States, NYSE Euronext and mtvU held the second Mentoring Madness at the New York Stock Exchange with some great entrepreneurs like Blake Mycoskie of TOMS Shoes, Barry Sternlicht of Starwood Capital, Stephen Hanson of B.R. Guest Restaurants and the one and only Snoop Dogg who gave some great advice to young entrepreneurs:
There were also great articles that appeared earlier in the Week about Global Entrepreneurship Week in great publications like:
GEW Turkey even took over CNN for a while
There were caricatures drawn at of the panelists in South Africa
A couple companies have already been started
@trace360: Check out new salon 4662 S. Cole- Hair Peace...another new biz started during Global Entrepreneurship Week...Congrats Ladies!
And of course all the activities and excitement all across the world for Global Entrepreneurship Week:
@GEWCanada: We're attempting a Guinness World Record at Toronto City Hall for the World's Largest Business Lesson - come join us!
So in these last couple days of Global Entrepreneurship Week make sure that you are following @unleashingideas and all the great countries that are on Twitter as well. And most importantly use the hashtag #GEW for all your Global Entrepreneurship Week tweets.
Brenden Chaney works for the Global Planning Team for Global Entrepreneurship Week and is based in Washington, D.C.
The highly successful Rendez-Vous '09 - Challenge Your World took place in Montreal yesterday, with a couple of video directors walking away with $2,000 apiece in winnings.
The Inspiriation for a Better World Video Challenge had winners in two categories - an award from film-making company Motionographer, and a People's Choice Award. The Motionographer winner, Nicholas Bentley, earned the prize for his video, "A Better Tomorrow." His reward was a $2,000 gift certificate to Apple.
The People's Choice Award went to Aaron Becker for his project, "Natural Re-sasters." He took home a $2,000 gift certificate to Adobe.
Also highlighting the event was keynote speaker Guy Kawasaki, one of the most followed people on Twitter and a blogger about social media. He spoke to the sold-out crowd of 650 people about the benefits of using social media as a platform to launch a startup business.
While most of the festivities took place last night, Challenge Your World is far from over. The Action for a Better World Idea Challenge will run through December, as people from across the globe are encouraged to submit their ideas for sustainable business that will have a positive impact on society and the environment.
A panel of judges will choose one winner who will receive $5,000 and three months of development support and services.
Some of the top submissions thus far were highlighted at last night's event: