The sector of small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) plays an important role in the economy of EU countries, role that has been demonstrated by several indicators (at the EU-28 level, in 2013), such as the number of employees (88.8 million people, representing 66.8% of the total rate of employment), the value added generated by this sector (€3,666 trillion, representing 58.1% of the total value added and as well as 28% of the EU-28 GDP), the number of active enterprises (99.8% of the non-financial business sector) (EC, 2014).
The European Commission pays particular attention to this sector; the Small Business Act (SBA), a framework for the EU policy on SMEs, was adopted in 2008, with the main aim of ensuring the development of this sector in terms of incentives to entrepreneurs, simplification of the regulatory and policy environment for SMEs, and removal of the existing barriers to their development. The SBA Review was launched in February 2011, with the aim of integrating the SBA in the Europe 2020 strategy. All in all, at the level of EU institutions and bodies, a lot of effort has been done in order to set up a proper environment for SMEs, the most targeted aspects being the reduction of the administrative burden, the improvement of access to financial resources, and the new market entry support.
All of these initiatives take place in the context in which the economic and financial crisis (which started in 2008) had a tremendous negative effect on the SMEs sector, the major effects for SMEs being a very high drop in demand for goods and services and a restricted access to financial resources (in terms of financial loans). The recovery of SMEs after an economic downturn happened at a slow pace, the progress made in the period 2011-2012 being followed by inconclusive results in 2013, when two out of three performance indicators scored negative values (compared to 2012): the total number of SMEs declined by 0.9% and the number of people employed by SMEs declined by 0.5%. (EC, 2014)
We are therefore inviting all potential interested researchers, as well as the general public, to participate to this issue of the On-line Journal Modelling the New Europe, on the topic of Small Business Management Performance in a European Context.
We are expecting papers on SMEs sector in the EU, from a macroeconomic perspective (analysis of the impact of socio-cultural, political-legal, technological and economic environments on the SMEs sector) as well as a microeconomic one (the specificity of management functions in SMEs; the role of the strategic management in SMEs, the SMEs employees’ and managers’ perception on various issue, etc.). We encourage analyses of EU policies on SMEs as well as analyses of SMEs’ practices and perceptions of the strategic management process, the adoption of innovation, the process of internationalization, the level of adoption of information technology, the specificity of their activity, the way in which they respond to the macroeconomic environment, etc.
We welcome theoretical and practical research papers which address the topic of small business management performance in a European Context.
Reference: EC (2014) A Partial and Fragile Economy. Annual Report on European SMEs 2013/2014.
The issue is double-peer reviewed by independent academics related to the line of study of the articles proposed. The Editorial Staff is looking forward to receiving your papers until September 15, 2015.
For information regarding the author guidelines, please access: http://neweurope.centre.ubbcluj.ro/?page_id=103
Please send your contributions to:
Assoc. prof. dr. Nicoleta Racolta-Paina
Faculty of European Studies, Babes-Bolyai University Cluj-Napoca