Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to assess the role that public policies may have in re-shaping entrepreneurial ecosystems and supporting the creation of functioning ecosystems based on new forms of finance, i.e. the equity-based crowdfunding. Design/methodology/approach – The paper first identifies and examines the European policies developed to encourage the use of equity crowdfunding in entrepreneurial finance from 2003 to 2018. Then, it reviews national regulatory frameworks for crowdfunding, and analyses the barriers that constrain the growth of national crowdfunding markets. Finally, the paper addresses the issue of regulatory harmonisation by underlining its importance in building an entrepreneurial ecosystem based on crowdfunding. Findings – Building an entrepreneurial ecosystem based on crowdfunding requires better policy coordination between European countries and readiness to take concerted actions. National authorities must look at the crowdfunding phenomenon from a European perspective and align their policies. European policymakers must import best practices from thriving national ecosystems by implementing less bureaucratic policies and with greater impact on entrepreneurial activity. Social implications – In a post-crisis economy, the architecture of entrepreneurial ecosystems must evolve and focus on new financing alternatives ensuring the survival of successful businesses. Originality/value – The paper offers a new perspective on entrepreneurship looking at the formation and development of new ecosystems around equity crowdfunding platforms. It also provides a relevant starting point for subsequent studies into this field.
- entrepreneurial ecosystem