Encourage entrepreneurship within the university community including students from different degrees, hoping to incentivate the creation of spin-offs.
Increasing, in the Azores, the transfer of knowledge, the entrepreneurial attitudes of the university students, and boosting the value creation and the creating opportunities for students to contact with business reality is the aim of this practice.
The project, developed in partnership between SDEA and the Azores University occurs three phases, starting with the Triple Helix Forum, which discusses topics on entrepreneurship, research, good practices and success stories, involving governmental entities, the University and enterprises.
The second stage stems from the development of business ideas, the realization of workshops.
The project culminates with the presentation of the business ideas in a pitch format before a jury that will choose the three best ones.
All of the students responsible for the business ideas are supported with the dessimination of information on the measures and incentives in place that support business creation. They are also granted the possibility to participate in the Regional Entrepreneurship Competition, which reward innovative projects conducive to the creation of a company.
The main stakeholders are the Azores Business Development Society (SDEA), and the University of the Azores and the beneficiaries are University students.
The main objective is the creation of academic spinoffs and startups that promote the importance of research in the leverage of competitive advantages of companies, as well as in creating value through innovation.

Resources needed

Human resources are required (a minimum of 4 people) and the collaboration of the entities involved to provide the facilities for the forum, workshops and events.

Evidence of success

Since the beginning of the project, there has been 6 editions involving over 440 students of the University of the Azores, from 5 different courses.
To boost success stories it was decided to create a project that will act downstream of ETH that, associated to the creation of the incubator, will target the maturation of the business ideas in effective Business Plans leading to the creation of companies.

Difficulties encountered

Difficulty in articulation and involvement of the various actors of the triple helix.

Potential for learning or transfer

The promotion of entrepreneurship within the University has a great potential for learning and developing certain skills that in the future will be fundamental for the individuals, not only in the business environment, but also essential for developing and implementing soft skills that are required in a sustainable society.
In addition to the ETH competition, it is necessary to develop specialized structures to support entrepreneurship, such as the incubator and the creation of a project specifically aimed at passing on knowledge that derives from research developed into marketable products through the creation of companies, or even property rights, which includes financial support for product development.

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Main institution
SDEA - Azores Business Development Society, EPER
Região Autónoma dos Açores, Portugal
Start Date
April 2014
End Date


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