UTEN’s plan for 2013-2017 is in line with the National Plan for Innovation in Portugal (Strategic Program +E +I) that has been approved by the Portuguese Government in December 2011 and whose aim is to adopt a policy model for the promotion of innovation and entrepreneurship with four main objectives – (1) a more entrepreneurial society based on a creative and innovative culture, (2) larger number of innovative companies with a strong drive to exports, (3) involvement of Portugal in international knowledge, innovation and entrepreneurship networks, and (4) allocation of investment for the development of innovative firms with differentiation capacity.
UTEN will support IAPMEI in the implementation of +E +I by coordinating with the plan by enlarging knowledge and capacity towards stimulating an entrepreneurial culture of entrepreneurship and creativity in Portugal by introducing these competences in the early years of undergraduate studies at universities as well as the development of life-long learning activities in line with the job market demand. Also important is the access to international knowledge networks, the linkages between industry and universities, and closing the gap between universities and companies, thereby promoting the competitiveness of the Portuguese economy, which UTEN will also promote. Specifically, UTEN will address the following specific set of policies that are included in the Government’s plan:
- Incentivize qualified entrepreneurship focused on internationalization and with an emphasis on the involvement of young people;
- Combat risk adversity by encouraging autonomy among university students and researchers;
- Promote the investment to innovation activities towards the development of a favorable ecosystem for entrepreneurship in Portugal, including the promotion of foreign venture capital;
- Develop actions involving different stakeholders that participate in the construction of a more entrepreneurial society, namely:
a) Provide tools and capacities for recent PhD graduates to find employment in non-academic careers inside or outside the scientific system, namely within industry or developing their own business venture;
b) Foster innovation through the development of partnerships for the future between the technology transfer offices that operate within the scientific system and companies, and the creation of networks for the economic valorization of scientific knowledge by bringing universities and companies together;
c) Train support for branding protection, international patenting and stimulus to licensing protected technologies;
d) Stimulate entrepreneurship to attract national talent as well as foreign entrepreneurs to base their ventures in Portugal.