Mario Duarte Canever, Alberto Pérez Chueca, Richard Pfeilstetter

An Evaluation of Entrepreneurship Orientation within the LEADER+ program in the European Union

This article deals with the currently widely discussed entrepreneurial
orientation (EO) and investigates the roles this concept actually plays within
the LEADER+ development program and its implementation in three European
territories. The main question addressed in this analysis is whether or not the
LEADER+ envisaged EO as a basic element for rural development. Can we really
observe both at the rhetoric and at the implementation levels impacts of the EO on
the LEADER+? To answer this question the official programmatic documents of
the EU community initiative LEADER+ are analyzed against the background of
the most important EO concepts and characteristics. Subsequently, a deeper look
in the implementation of LEADER+ in three European territories shows that the
EO still has little impact in the actions implemented. Some major contradictory
rhetoric of the LEADER+ is identified regarding EO and its importance to the development
program. As well as some important suggestions for improving future
development program can be derived from the analysis. These show that, despite
the lack of focus on EO by the LEADER+, the concept has the potential to make a
significant contribution to the successful development of regions.

Check other articles from the issue Primavera 2012 or from other issues.