How the Startup Friendliness Index (SFI) workslink
By Dannyelle Thompson
30 March 2021
enpact’s Data & Research division began with the vision that, equipped with the right data and analysis, we could understand what factors contribute to a startup ecosystem and from there give informed insights to improve, strengthen, or alter it. And so we compiled that data, and before us stood a mountain of decimals and digits that somehow stood as a viewpoint to a global network of entrepreneurs, investors and policymakers. But we still needed to find a way to communicate the value of what we created.
When I sought to create the concept of this report, I wanted to show our audience why our data could be valuable to them. Here at enpact, we truly find the SFI fascinating; a few minutes scrolling through the columns of digits and I find myself asking questions: What policies have constrained the workforce in Singapore to give it a score of 44.87? How can Mexico City and Jakarta have such similar SFI scores (44.2 and 45.5) and yet their ecosystems are markedly different in their lived experiences? What contributes to those differences and in what ways are they the same? Can one solution work for both places or do we need to be more creative and holistic in the solutions we propose?
All of these questions are ones our reporting attempts to answer. What exactly makes an ecosystem operate the way it does? As Jan mentioned earlier, though ecosystems may differ in their geography and culture, entrepreneurs around the globe have a remarkable amount in common. This is why the SFI normalizes its score, to compare two unlike places and mark them on the same scale. In this way, one ecosystem can be informed by another.
In this report, you will find that we not only worked to bring our SFI to life but also to elevate voices of direct stakeholders in the ecosystems we analyze. Through interviews and guest articles, investors, entrepreneurs, corporations, and government entities speak on why they are excited about their respective ecosystems and, even more importantly, why they are eager to bring more connections to it to show the amount of energy and innovation that is developing. Their contributions paint a picture of what the startup culture is like, where future trends may be, and what opportunities there are to get involved at any level.
Our hope is simply to demystify, make connections, and highlight stories, innovation, and insights that might propel the ecosystems forward. By understanding in frank terms the strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities, we can learn from other ecosystem builders and propose policies, solutions, and perspectives that create real change and empower change-makers.
After a brief introduction to the Startup Friendliness Index, its 6 domains and 17 subdomains, methodology, and how to interpret it, we will dive right into a regional overview, not limited to the three cities we analyze herein. Next, for each city (Singapore, Jakarta and Bengaluru), we will provide an analysis of their SFI scores, an overview of active policies, and guest articles from ecosystem builders. These guest articles function as a deeper look into a particular topic or a first-hand account of the ecosystem.
After some conclusions and recommendations, including cross-sectional comparisons between the three cities, you will then find in the index a complete compilation of the SFI data for the three cities. Each subdomain is provided with a description and some important information about how to interpret it. Of course, more data is always available on our website as well, www.enpact.org/data-research.
We hope you leave this report feeling informed, inspired, and, most of all, ready to take action
Dannyelle works as a Research Analyst for enpact’s Data&Research sector. Originally from Los Angeles, Dannyelle has lived and worked in Berlin, Germany for two years. Her primary work at enpact revolves around product design, policy research, and authoring SFI reports. In June 2021, she will graduate from The Hertie School with her Master of Public Policy with a concentration in Policy Analysis.
Dannyelle is the Chief Editor and creator of the empower magazine.