My work is based on encounters

Jacob Bruintjes, Borger

Chairman of the Local Action Group of LEADER South-East Drenthe

1. Why did you join the Osiris activities?

I am Chairman of the Local Action Group (LAG) Zuidoost-Drenthe. Through OSIRIS our LAG has additional opportunities to involve SMEs in the region in terms of our objectives. We can use OSIRIS to organize a number of meetings for entrepreneurs to explore new opportunities together for cooperation in crafts .

2. What did you learn from participating?

I have learned a lot from the approach of Swedish project partners. It was inspiring to see how they make entrepreneurs enthusiastic to participate in their projects. Everyone is looking for small enterprises or self-employed who often do not belong to cooperatives or working unions. We must look for methods to bring these people together. Recently I was at a meeting in my own municipality. A thousand people had been invited and only 30 people participated in the meeting. So you see how much work it is to persuade people to attend your meetings. Once the entrepreneurs are together, there are usually many new and refreshing ideas. Actually bringing people together is the most work for us.

3. How can you transfer this knowledge to your own work?

My own work consists of organizing meetings. The knowledge we acquire within OSIRIS is useful for us as LAG for getting entrepreneurs more involved in our objectives. We have met the entrepreneurs a few times now and we are ready to take the results a step further to help the entrepreneurs start up new projects.

4. Did you get new useful contacts for your own work?

Yes, both international contacts and entrepreneurs in our own region that I did not know yet. I hope to actively connect people to each other in the future.

5. Given the lessons learned – how do you see that the innovation system in your own region can be improved?

Our LAG works with LEADER grants. Delays in the assessment procedure and bureaucracy are really a problem. An entrepreneur often starts enthusiastically but, once confronted with the slowness of our subsidy system, that disappears quickly. I hope we can improve this.