Regional Forum on social entrepreneurship, organized by the Regional Incubator for Social Entrepreneurs (RISE) took place in Tirana, Albania on 6-8 September 2022. The Forum brought together the most relevant actors and stakeholders of the entrepreneurial ecosystem from the Western Balkans 6 and Europe. 

Neven Marinović, director of Smart Kolektiv took part in the conference as one of the panelists of the session “Solidarity economy and smart growth for sustainable future of Europe”. He reflected on the current state of social entrepreneurship in Serbia and on the activities of Smart Kolektiv, especially those including regional cooperation and engagement of young people within the social economy ecosystem. He also commented on the social economy law that was recently approved in Serbia and discussed the possible common strategy and objectives to scale up the social economy with a 2030 horizon. 

The event was attended by representatives of a wide range of ecosystem players, including central and local government institutions from the region, local, regional and international development institutions, NGOs, social entrepreneurs, academia, and experts and mentors. 

Through different panels, discussions, and interactive workshops, participants exchanged ideas, experiences and best practices across sectors with speakers, experts, social entrepreneurs and start-ups. They discussed the current state of social entrepreneurship in the region and best practices to shed a light on European initiatives and the Western Balkans’ perspective.  

The second RISE Regional Forum, supported by the Federal Foreign Office of Germany, was focusing on the importance of developing support mechanisms and legal frameworks to foster social entrepreneurship as a powerful instrument for the social and economic development in the region. 

RISE – Regional Incubator for Social Entrepreneurs is a regional support program for young social entrepreneurs implemented by Smart Kolektiv within Serbia, since 2019.   

The RISE project is developed and supervised by a consortium consisting of the Regional Youth Cooperation Office (RYCO), GROUPE SOS Pulse, the South East European Youth Network (SEEYN), the Institut Français and the Franco-German Youth Office (OFAJ), and implemented by six local incubators – Smart Kolektiv (Serbia), IPC Tehnopolis (Montenegro), ARNO (Northern Macedonia), Balkan Green Foundation (Kosovo), Nešto više (BIH) and Yunus Social Business (Albania). RISE is co-financed by the French Development Agency (AFD) and the Regional Youth Cooperation Office (RYCO). More about the RISE program >> WEBSITE