Our Strategic Ambition

Enterprise centres and hubs are key drivers of economic activity across the regions through the provision of physical space for entrepreneurs, startups, scaling companies, SMEs and small scale FDI.  Enterprise centres and hubs drive regional ecosystems, power vibrant regions, and offer a pathway to sustained economic growth in local communities.

We believe that enterprise hubs, flexible working spaces and community enterprise initiatives are all integral parts of a key national asset – the physical and people infrastructure upon which community enterprise is built.

The delivery of the 2019 – 2021 NACEC Strategy via our Regional Transformation Programme is supported by Enterprise Ireland under the 2019 Regional Enterprise Development Fund (RED F3).

Our Strategy

With the launch of the 2019 – 2021 NACEC Strategy, NACEC’s strategic ambition  is in alignment with Enterprise Ireland’s  Powering the Regions target of supporting 10,000 co-working and incubation spaces in regional locations by end 2023.

As the leading network of community enterprise, digital, sectoral, co-working centres and hubs across Ireland, NACEC’s strategy has become increasingly relevant with the recent launch of national strategies such as Making Remote Work Strategy and Our Rural Future.

Five Pillars | 20 Actions

The 2019 – 2021 NACEC Strategy sets out five core strategic pillars which are underpinned by 20 actions.

The UN Sustainable Development Goals, also known as the Global Goals were adopted by all United Nations Member States in 2015, setting out an international blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable, resilient future long term and for all.

In alignment with this international commitment, NACEC will focus on the development of an SDG Charter for the Network with each of NACECs strategic pillars having a number of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at their core.

Enterprising Regions

Project Ireland 2040 sets out a number of key policy goals including government’s ambition to strengthen regional economies and futureproof regional communities.

With a focus on this policy goal and in response to the 2019 OECD SME and Entrepreneurship Policy Report in Ireland which pointed to the weakness in  Ireland’s enterprise networks, NACEC is committed to working closely with Enterprise Ireland’s regional structure, offices and teams so as to support the network members ambition to actively contribute to the national enterprise ecosystem.

Climate Change + Sustainability

Launched in 2015, the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are the sustainable development KPIs for the planet with the enterprise community globally being key partners in the delivery of targeted and sustainable development activities.

Enterprise Ireland included transitioning to a Low Carbon Economy as part of its Powering the Regions Strategy and in support of this, NACEC has developed a three-pronged approach to improve environmental performance for the National Hub Network.

Skills + Digitisation

As highlighted by the 2019 OECD Report on SME and Entrepreneurship Policy in Ireland small firms across Ireland are experiencing shortages of skilled personnel.

NACEC members have a large training, learning and mentoring reach.  NACEC’s priority is to drive skills development in collaboration with NACEC members and training providers across the regions. 

NACEC members are committed to extending their supports into the wider community to include business development with a specific focus on the adoption of digital tools, skills retention and upskilling across communities.

Global Ambition

The Future Jobs Ireland 2019 Strategy highlights Government’s ambition under Global Ireland 2025 to drive  export ambition, open up new markets for businesses, and promote Irish goods and services internationally.

Building international alliances is a key NACEC goal, with a strong focus on EU project participation and the establishment of partnerships and MoUs with international organisations whose goals align with NACEC priorities.

This has never been more relevant than in today’s world when our regional SME base deals with the aftershocks of Brexit and the Covid-19 pandemic.

Organisation Sustainability

NACEC was born almost two decades ago as a series of regional networks which amalgamated into a national Network in 2008.

Throughout, NACEC has been pivotal in driving the sustained growth of community enterprise across the regions.

The Board and NACEC team are committed to  strengthening the national Network, driving strategic and operational capacity while continuing to meet the evolving needs of our Network and our members into the future.