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Interview: Dr. Andrijana Bogdanovska Gj. About the WECAN Project

Interview with the CKM's director Andrijana Bogdanovska Gj.  for the business portal Biznis Vesti from North Macedonia of 

Date: 10.07.2020

Source: LINK 



Tell us something more about WECAN. What is this project about?

According to the European Commission in 2017, although 52% of the European population is composed of women, only 1/3 of European entrepreneurs (40.6 million) are women (11.6 million). Women’s entrepreneurial activity in Europe has not yet reached its full potential. The Women Entrepreneurship Report published by the Global entrepreneurship monitor shows that women face additional hurdles with respect to men, especially related to gender-related issues and the investment environment. These barriers  limit women’s success in the entrepreneurial activities. Generally, between the EU women’s enterprises have lower growth expectations and higher rates of  discontinuity than men do. The report also reveals that women more likely need motivation rather than opportunities. This suggests that the support for newly established businesses, mentoring, education and training are important tools to sustain women entrepreneurial activities over time. Women’s perceptions regarding their capability of starting and managing a business are very low in the EU despite them being highly educated.

WECAN or women’s entrepreneurship coaches training  is a strategic partnership project co-funded by the Erasmus+ program of the European Union. WECAN addresses entrepreneurship as a key competence to both  starting a business and  creating value as described by the EntreComp framework. The project aims at enhancing women’s positive perceptions of their skills to start a new business through a coaching journey in which coaches with relevant entrepreneurial experience will explain what it actually takes to be an entrepreneur.

The project will begin in November 2019 and it will be implemented till October 2021.


What is the real output of this project? What are its results?

The objectives are very simple. The project is focused on overcoming the lack of structured assistance for women entrepreneurs and to offer them knowledge, help and advice through their peers who have already developed successful businesses. It also aims at developing basic and transversal entrepreneurial skills, using a tailored coaching program. Furthermore, it aids in the creation of a sense of initiative and entrepreneurial mindset among female adults or the young entrepreneurs, and promotes unconventional and informal learning to build self-confidence, brake barriers and empower unemployed female adults.

Your organization is one of the partners on this project. How many partners are working on the project?

In total, there are 6 partners from several European countries: France, North Macedonia, Greece, Spain, Italy and Cyprus; all the while the project is led by EUROCIRCLE – Centre d'Information Europe Direct from France. From our previous experience in working with European projects, I have to say that on this project we have the best team so far. Exceptionally motivated, creative and strong women run this project and the results so far show the same.


What are the activities that you are implementing now and those that you are planning to implement in the future?

I will follow up on the previous question. This project has 3 intellectual outputs. The first one is the Methodological Guide in which WECAN’s coaching methodology will be described. Furthermore, we are developing a Set of tools (Energizers and Ice breakers) These activities will help the WECoach during the course. The second output is the development of a WECAN Curriculum for individual coaching, and the third one is the WECAN e-learning platform, which will have specific tools that can be used for coaching. The Curriculum and the e-learning platform will be translated in all partner languages.

The first output i.e. the Methodological Guide for WECoaches and the Set of tools with energizers and icebreakers are finished and are uploaded on the project’s website. They can be found on the following link.

As part of the project, we plan to conduct a training for 18 women trainers, which will be held in Palermo, Italy in April 2021. The training will last one week and the goal is to introduce WECoaches to the project tools, in order for them to use them in the future. The project is comprehensive and I believe the results will be of great help for a large group of women in North Macedonia.

Center for Knowledge Management is a research center established in 2008  set on enhancing and improving knowledge management processes in all social spheres in Republic of Macedonia and the SEE region. It covers a wide  variety of activities performed in collaboration with the civil sector, the public administration and the business community . CKM’s vision is to  undertake an active role in the institutional and economic development of the country, and the region.


Project Coordinator

Centre d'Information Europe Direct

47, rue du Coq, 13001 Marseille, France
+33 4 91 42 94 75

Charlotte Perault, EU Project Manager

Hélène Seigneur, EU Project Manager

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