Best Practices

Keep the Fires Burning: Global Entrepreneurship Week across the U.S.SourceLink Network

Published Nov 15, 2012 by Sarah Mote

Across the United States and across the world, millions of people are stepping out and stepping up for entrepreneurship. It’s all a part of the worldwide celebration of Global Entrepreneurship Week.

Each November, Global Entrepreneurship Week connects entrepreneurs all over the world through local, national and global activities. For one week—this year, Nov. 12–18—millions of aspiring and established entrepreneurs worldwide have joined a growing movement to generate new ideas and seek better ways of doing things. 

Why is Global E-Week important?

Because entrepreneurship creates jobs—and many of the new jobs in entrepreneurial economies come from firms less than five years old. Leaders around the world see GEW as a way to stimulate and support entrepreneurship and the ecosystem it needs to thrive.

But Global E-Week is more than an awareness campaign.

Through local, national and global activities, GEW gives aspiring, emerging and existing entrepreneurs a chance to be creative and build connections, to start companies and spur economic growth.

GEW in the Network:
Alaska, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Louisiana

As America’s largest resource network for entrepreneurs, our affiliates—from Alaska to New Orleans—are hosting numerous entrepreneurial activities to spark ideas and keep the fires of entrepreneurship burning all year long.

From north to south, with a little east-west shuffle in between, here’s just a taste of what’s happening in the U.S.SourceLink network.

In Alaska: From startup meetups to brown bag lunches to classes on business basics, AKSourceLink is linking aspiring, emerging and established entrepreneurs across the Land of the Midnight Sun to the just-in-time resources they need. Follow #GEWAK on Twitter.

In southern Minnesota: What better way to celebrate Global Entrepreneurship Week than to launch a entrepreneurial network? SoMNSourceLink joins the U.S.SourceLink family to connect Minnesota entrepreneurs with the on-the-ground small business resources they need to start and grow their businesses.  

SoMNSourceLink connects entrepreneurs to on-the-ground small business resources.

In southeastern Wisconsin and northern Illinois:  One of the resource partners from State of Ingenuity SourceLink is hosting an Entrepreneurship Fair, complete with informational booths, prizes and the Gateway Shark Tank business idea competition. That capstone event concludes a full week of classes and workshops aimed at helping the region’s small businesses launch their ideas and grow their companies.

In Iowa: Startup Weekend Des Moines will close GEW for the state of Iowa. During 54 intense hours of vetting, brainstorming and pitching, entrepreneurs leave Startup Weekend better prepared to navigate the chaotic but fun world of startups.

In Missouri: Bracketed by Startup Weekends in St. Louis and Kansas City, GEW Missouri celebrated “Show Me” entrepreneurship across the state with activities focused on a variety of activities to spark, flame and fan startups, from job crawls to tech funding to tax planning. Follow #GEWMO on Twitter.

Kristen McLain wins the MOSourceLink "Come to Start, Stay to Grow" Contest.


In Kansas City: Among its 40+ GEW events, including Startup Weekend, Startup Job Crawl and Google for Entrepreneurs, KCSourceLink broke the world record for the largest speed networking event on Monday night. Follow #GEWKC on Twitter.

KCSourceLink breaks the world record for speed networking.

In Kansas: From the Rural Opportunities Conference to workshops on starting a business to GovFest (which helps small business learn how to work with the government), Network Kansas connected entrepreneurs across the state with its vast (500+ resource partners) network of entrepreneurial and small business organizations.

GovFest in Kansas during Global Entrepreneurship Week

In Tulsa: Capping off the week-long TulsaGEW activities that included Pitch-O-Rama and the Tulsa Innovation Forum, the Tulsey Awards, hosted by the City of Tulsa, recognize the pioneers and innovators of the Tulsa community. These publicly nominated and voted awards recognize the importance of entrepreneurs influence on Tulsa’s quality of life and economic strength.

In New Orleans: The celebration of entrepreneurship is still going strong in New Orleans—and will continue long after GEW is over. During MetroNolaSourceLink’s events, entrepreneurs can learn how to start a home-based business, develop winning business proposals, and finance their small businesses, among many other workshops, seminars and activities.

A little background on Global Entrepreneurship Week

GEW was originally launched in 2008 by former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Carl Schramm, former president and CEO of the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. Since then, it has spanned the globe, with nearly 24,000 partner organizations in 130 countries planning more than 37,000 activities that directly engage more than 10 million people.