Smart government

Smart policy and regulation is necessary

The Road to 5 Percent: 20 Years of Striving for Women-Owned Businesses

In 1994, Congress passed the Federal Acquisition Streamlining Act, which among other things, aimed to make sure that the federal government gives businesses owned by women, veterans, and minorities a fair shake at winning government contracts. One of the goals the law set: The government should aim to award 5 percent of its contracts for which small businesses are eligible to women-owned businesses. It took a little more than two decades, but the U.S. government has finally achieved that goal. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced earlier this year that women-owned businesses secured 5 percent of federal contracts in fiscal year 2015, representing $17.8 billion worth of federal work. The question now: What’s next for women entrepreneurs and the approximately 8 million workers they employ across the country? While women-owned businesses have made great strides in federal contracting, officials still have a lot of work ahead to create a […]

The Road to 5 Percent: 20 Years of Striving for Women-Owned Businesses

Smart government

Kansas City’s Startups and Small Businesses are Capitalizing on Uncle Sam’s Presence

Kansas City’s small businesses are opportunistic, making the very most of a recent influx of talented workers, relatively healthy regulatory climate, and the presence of some of the nation’s most sophisticated internet connectivity. One more resource they’re capitalizing on: the presence of Uncle Sam. More than two dozen federal agencies maintain operations in the Kansas City metro area, which is also home to a thriving independent small business and startup community. Over the years, those companies’ proximity to federal agencies has helped businesses in and around Kansas City win contracts from federal governments that require local products and services. “It makes sense,” Kenneth Surmeier, a business specialist at the Small Business Administration (SBA), said about contract opportunities that exist in the city. “I know businesses that just make a living working on government contracts.” RELATED: How connectivity is fueling Kansas City’s growth and boosting local innovation in the heartland region […]

Kansas City’s Startups and Small Businesses are Capitalizing on Uncle Sam’s Presence

Smart government

Small Businesses Are Big Targets for Cybercriminals. Here’s How to Thwart Them.

As Internet tools become an indispensable part of running a company, small businesses have increasingly become lucrative targets for cybercriminals wielding ransomware, phishing scams, and adware-like weapons, according to Alejandro N. Mayorkas, deputy secretary at the Department of Homeland Security, who spoke at the U.S. Chamber’s America’s Small Business Summit last week in Washington. “A great hacker can get into anything,” Mayorkas told a room full of small business leaders at the annual summit. “All the hacker needs is time and resources.” While cyberattacks can deal a heavy blow to even the largest corporations, small businesses that lack the resources to invest in cybersecurity are at an even greater disadvantage—a fact U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Commissioner Luis A. Aguilar publicly lamented last year. According to an SEC report, 60 percent of all data breaches in 2014 targeted small businesses. Mayorkas said there are a few simple things small […]

Small Businesses Are Big Targets for Cybercriminals. Here’s How to Thwart Them.

Smart government

Entrepreneurs are Smoking in this BBQ Capital

What lies ahead for entrepreneurs in Memphis, TN? We talked to the people who know best.

Entrepreneurs are Smoking in this BBQ Capital

Smart government

What’s Right and What’s Wrong in the South’s New Economy 

What does it mean to be a startup hub in the 21st century? A digital layer is being stretched across the economy today enabling our institutions to work better, faster, and smarter. Cities are the focal point of this new digital economy. But which cities are ready, and which are in danger of being left behind? These are the major questions we’re aiming to answer in this next iteration of Innovation that Matters. To get answers, we’ve done a lot of number crunching and analysis, but we’re also talking to people on the ground – entrepreneurs, city leaders, venture capitalists, and other key network actors in several cities – to get their take on what’s working to drive startup success. We started our eight-city tour with Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina, and Atlanta, Georgia, both leaders in the South’s new economy. They boast an impressive mix of startups and big corporations, incubators […]

What’s Right and What’s Wrong in the South’s New Economy 

Smart government

A Security Firm That’s All About Data and Dogs

It’s no surprise that the plethora of information at our fingertips has changed the way businesses accomplish goals and produce their product. Real-world applications of this real-time data is helping some U.S. firms to improve important sectors such as healthcare, technology, and security. One of these firms is Arc Aspicio, a leading homeland security consulting firm in Washington, D.C. that was named a 2015 DREAM BIG Blue Ribbon Award winner. Arc Aspicio believes that one of the best ways to further national security is through the community, by working to promote learning, collaboration and innovation. Their projects cover top issues in the homeland security field, including immigration, border enforcement, emergency management, transportation security, and national protection. Arc Aspicio also makes a point of giving back to the community in a big way. In partnership with The National Search Dog Foundation, Arc Aspicio honors their love of canines (and their commitment […]

A Security Firm That’s All About Data and Dogs

Smart government

The battle of the delivery startups

A delivery battle is brewing in San Francisco (and other cities across America) and the outcome will be decided not by government officials, but by local businesses.   Just as the Internet revolutionized online shopping, on-demand startups transformed the delivery process by creating new ways to provide same-day service. Companies like popular ride-hailing app Uber are just one of the many businesses that are trying to woo merchants by offering low-cost, same-day delivery services, complete with tracking services. The winners in this growing market will hold sway over the burgeoning on-demand delivery industry. Uber started its delivery service known as UberRUSH in 2014, joining services such as Amazon Flex and third-party delivery systems like Deliv, which delivers retail items ranging from toys to clothes. The services charge as little as $5 per delivery, much lower than the prices many traditional shipping companies or government delivery systems charge. Meanwhile, companies that […]

The battle of the delivery startups

Smart government

Our 5 Most Popular Stories of the Year: Smart Government

Here are FreeEnterprise.com's five most popular stories of the year in the Smart Government category.

Our 5 Most Popular Stories of the Year: Smart Government

Smart government

Our Favorite Stories of 2015: Free Enterprise Editors Make Their Picks

Here are FreeEnterprise.com's editors' favorite stories of 2015.

Our Favorite Stories of 2015: Free Enterprise Editors Make Their Picks

Smart government

The Startup That’s Making a Complex Immigration Process Simple

These days, when people talk about hot new startups, we often think of pure tech companies. We don’t always think of those companies that might leverage technology, in a large part or an ancillary way, to find new ways to solve old problems. Such is the case with SimpleCitizen, a finalist in the recent Challenge Cup competition in Salt Lake City, Utah. Beneath the vaulted ceilings of the former church-turned-entrepreneurship center Church & State, the three-person team behind Simple Citizen competed against a host of other startups in the area for a chance to advance to the regional stage of this year’s Challenge Cup. Founded just last year, SimpleCitizen works to improve the legal immigration process for individuals and families. The company offers online tools and resources that streamline the process in an affordable way–and they offer full legal review. The immigration process can be so complex and costly that it’s prompted an entire series on Medium.com. This […]

The Startup That’s Making a Complex Immigration Process Simple

Smart government
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