The award was one of four given out at the Startup Nations Summit for leadership in implementing innovative public policies and programs to help entrepreneurs start and scale new businesses in their countries and around the world.
The World Bank Group team, led by Ganesh Rasagam, developed and executed ambitious research projects on areas previously only studied in advanced economies, such as tech ecosystems in cities of emerging countries and the art of promoting high-growth entrepreneurship across developing nations. In the process, the World Bank Group has collected new data on policy tools that developing nations can use to benefit from the impact of growth-oriented entrepreneurship.
“Generating empirical knowledge about what works and what doesn’t in promoting entrepreneurship is critical,” Rasagam said. “We combine the policy knowledge from our research projects with our experience on the ground to ensure that funds from donors and governments are spent efficaciously.”
The other winners were Jorge Lawson of Argentina for Local Policy Leadership, Mariano Mayer of Argentina for National Policy Leadership, and Mikk Vainik of Estonia for the Global Entrepreneurship Network Award.
“As governments become more sophisticated in engaging with start-up communities, the work being done by these leaders serve as examples on how to build and strengthen entrepreneurial ecosystems everywhere,” said Jonathan Ortmans, president of the Global Entrepreneurship Network, in a press release on the group’s website.
The Innovation & Entrepreneurship team includes the infoDev entrepreneurship program, as well as economists studying innovation and entrepreneurship policy. It is part of the World Bank Group’s Trade & Competitiveness global practice. Recent publications include topics such as high-growth entrepreneurship, mobile application labs, innovations for scaling green sectors, and crowdfunding.
The Global Entrepreneurship Network operates a platform of projects and programs in 170 countries aimed at making it easier for anyone, anywhere to start and scale a business. By fostering deeper cross-border collaboration and initiatives between entrepreneurs, investors, researchers, policymakers and entrepreneurial support organizations, GEN works to fuel healthier start and scale ecosystems that create more jobs, educate individuals, accelerate innovation, and strengthen economic growth.