A workshop on Incubation Centers from the Asia-Pacific: Forging Partnerships for the Development of Entrepreneurs and Promotion of Entrepreneurship was organized by the Asian Productivity Organization (APO), 14–18 July 2014, in Taipei, ROC, in collaboration with the China Productivity Center (CPC). The workshop was attended by 20 incubation professionals, entrepreneurs, and academics from APO member economies in the Asia-Pacific region.
The workshop discussed incubation- and entrepreneurship-related policies and programs, the present status of incubators, challenges faced by incubators, barriers to their sustainability, measuring the success of incubators, and other issues. After intensive discussions and careful examination of various aspects over five days, the workshop made the following recommendations:
Recommendations for National Governments
1. Initiate sustainable entrepreneurial ecosystems by encouraging and promoting incubation activities within the country. Such activities will then improve socioeconomic development, enhance technology adoption, and build knowledge-based enterprises.
2. Establish a special entity to manage and promote incubation activities within the country. Such special entities will help the government to promote, establish, and oversee the incubation ecosystem effectively and efficiently.
3. Plan activities and programs to create awareness of incubation systems among stakeholders and to promote the incubation concept.
4. Formalize partnerships with regional and international networks to build the capacity of incubation professionals, policymakers, and organizations including business entities involved in promoting incubation centers.
5. Conduct seminars, conferences, workshops, and training programs in each country to build the capacity of organizations, incubation professionals, and policymakers.
6. Encourage stakeholders involved in creating entrepreneurial ecosystems to participate in international events related to incubation.
7. Encourage knowledge-sharing study missions to other regions to understand the good practices of incubation centers.
8. Develop fellowship and educational programs with other national and international incubation centers to provide hands-on experience and training to incubation professionals.
9. Simplify the procedures and systems for starting new companies or ventures, which will lead to the creation of a start-up ecosystem with more companies becoming operational in a shorter gestation period.
10. Offer fiscal incentives such as tax cuts/rebates and incentives for the services provided by incubators.
11. Offer fiscal incentives to corporations, industries, and service providers that support incubation centers.
12. Offer fiscal incentives to incubating enterprises and those that have passed the incubation phase.
13. Support incubating enterprises by assisting them to participate in trade fairs or exhibitions where they can promote their commercializable products and services while establishing networks and linkages with similar enterprises.
14. Encourage and promote public-private partnerships in the incubation ecosystem.
Recommendations for the Asian Productivity Organization (APO)
15. Create a network of participants in APO projects on entrepreneurship and incubation.
16. Build relationships with international organizations in the Asia-Pacific involved in promoting incubation ecosystems in the region.
17. Identify opportunities to serve member countries by building the capacity of incubation centers through relations with other international organizations, such as the Asia Pacific Incubation Network, Asian Association of Business Incubations, etc.
18. Leverage web-based platforms for collecting and sharing incubator-related information among member economies.
19. Consider providing a separate pavilion for incubators and incubating enterprises in exhibitions organized or supported by the APO.
Recommendations for National Productivity Organizations (NPOs)
20. Take the lead in establishing national-level incubator associations/networks and encourage industries to adopt the promotion of incubation activities as part of their corporate social responsibility.
[Participating countries: Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nepal, Philippines,
Republic of Korea, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam]