Public sector innovation is crucial for addressing societal challenges, but traditional top-down approaches are often limited in their effectiveness. By involving citizens and stakeholders in solution design, the project aims to enhance public services' relevance and sustainability. Researchers and public organisations collaborate to develop insights and best practices for co-creation in the public sector.

Project description

Public:START is an interdisciplinary research project funded by the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union that aims to investigate how public sector innovation can be fostered through a set of skills and tools to transform public servants into public entrepreneurs who can effectively tackle complex challenges faced by the public sector. The project involves collaboration between six partners consisting of European universities and research institutes, as well as public sector organisations.

Aim of the project

The aim of the public: START project is to equip public sector staff with entrepreneurial and transformative skills to respond to complex socio-economic challenges. The project will help break down traditional working methods in the public sector and promote a new mindset that emphasises innovation, collaboration, and risk-taking. By equipping public servants with entrepreneurial and transformative skills, the project seeks to enable them to respond effectively to complex socio-economic challenges such as climate change, energy transition, and migration. The ultimate goal is to create a new generation of public entrepreneurs who can work across sector lines and foster a culture of innovation in the public sector.

Expected results

The expected research results of the public: START project include the development of a comprehensive digital learning programme and a practical learning tool to promote public entrepreneurship skills. The project's outcomes will contribute to the development of a theoretical competence framework for public entrepreneurship, provide insights into the effectiveness of digital learning tools and on-the-job training in fostering entrepreneurial skills in the public sector.


The desired impact of this project is to nurture a new generation of Public Entrepreneurs all over Europe in order to respond to complex socio-economic challenges by fostering public innovation. The project aims to enhance the quality and relevance of public services, while also fostering greater trust and engagement between citizens and the state. Ultimately, the project has the potential to contribute to the development of more responsive, participatory and democratic societies across Europe and beyond.