Solving the startup ecosystem debate

Submitted by Alina Danieles… on 19 March 2018

We share with you this interesting reading on entrepreneurship and setting of the Startup Infrastructure Diagram (SID) helping regions map their supporting ecosystem. The article is authored by Hendrik Halbe, founder of Get in the Ring & VenturesPlus. 

"I’ve been promoting the stimulation of entrepreneurship for a long time. My friends at university would tell you I was a preacher - while they were eagerly pursuing careers and internships at big corporates, I was organising events on ‘how to start your own company’.

Fast-forward ten years and I’m still stimulating entrepreneurship and encouraging students to follow alternative paths, just like I did. I’m often surprised by the amount of startup experience students have on their resume these days. The appetite for working within small, innovative brands has certainly accelerated since my days as a student.

Maybe it’s because we have Governments all over the world working hard to make entrepreneurship a viable career path. Backing entrepreneurs because they know that they are the main driver of our economy. They are the ones creating net new jobs, not the multinationals.

But to be honest i think a main driver is that being a entrepreneur is just much more sexy than it was in the past. Becoming the the next Zuckerberg is more appealing than becoming the CEO of a big bank. Creating your own future is the new credo. 

However, the fact still remains that in every region millions are spent to support founders with bright ideas, entrepreneurial communities and new initiatives - some of which i’m lucky enough to be involved with, through my work for Halbe&Koenraads.

The result is that startup initiatives are popping up left right and centre and although this is great, on the downside it can be difficult to sift through and understand exactly what’s on offer.

Is this a bad thing? Maybe not, but I attend too many meetings with the same discussion happening over and over again: what’s on offer?

Nobody has an overview of our ecosystem and this causes confusion.

So, after much discussion I thought it was about time the process was simplified and a discussion paper was created. A one-page document illustrating exactly what our infrastructure looks like.

Our Startup Infrastructure Diagram (SID) helps regions map their supporting ecosystem.

So far, we have successfully mapped Oman and Zoetermeer, and have now created a diagram for the whole of the Netherlands.

This diagram acts as discussion paper for policy makers and ecosystem builders while giving startups guidance of all the support available in their region, and where to find it.

I see that millions are being spent on new startup initiatives when actually, something very similar already exists - people just don’t know where to find it.

If we all understood what our infrastructure already has to offer, then we could be spending money on resources that will actually take it to the next level.

I hope that by using our SID, you get a better understanding of your ecosystem, and are therefore able to identify potential gaps that need filing.

We want the SID to be a collaborative project, and need your input on how it can be improved further. So let me know if you have any comments.

Similarly, if you’d like to create an infrastructure diagram, let’s co-map it together."

Contact details: 

hendrik [at]

info [at]

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