The Global Startup Ecosystem Report 2022

A Note From GEN


“Entrepreneurship is percolating everywhere, and competition on the global leaderboard is fierce.”

In April 2022, the global startup community hit a milestone. Thousands of people from 180 countries came together in person for the first time since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The convening point was GEN’s Global Entrepreneurship Congress (GEC), a gathering of startup champions working together to build one inclusive global entrepreneurship ecosystem underpinned by a shared engine of innovation and economic growth.

The event was a testament to how far we have come in understanding the virus and learning to adapt to it, thanks in large part to research data and entrepreneurialism. Humankind has leveraged knowledge and skills to innovate through the worst of the pandemic. In its wake, startup ecosystem research is providing data that will inform economic strategies and intensify global competition for talent and investment.

Rewind 10 years, and the global ecosystem had a small handful of star players. Entrepreneurship was accessible to a select few. Today, people are identifying and solving problems on a massive scale. Entrepreneurship is percolating everywhere, and competition on the global leaderboard is fierce. Groundbreaking advancements to reduce barriers are taking place in cities and countries previously dismissed in conversations about startups and innovation — so much so that these cities are now strong challengers to global frontrunners.

This is a remarkable story of people, passion and grit, but also of data. Finding better ways of doing things demands the painstaking work of collecting and analyzing information, constantly adapting to new knowledge and standing strong to conclusions no matter how contrary they seem to intuition. This has been the work of Startup Genome over the past 10 years — providing innovation ecosystems with data to understand what it takes to compete in the race to the top.  

GEN is proud to stand alongside Startup Genome to present the Global Startup Ecosystem Report (GSER) as both a guide to innovation performance and a prompt to leaders to develop ecosystem strategies from evidence-based analysis, not gut. The GSER informs decisions by government ministers and staff within our GEN policy communities, it guides our national managing directors in over 85 countries, and it fuels our global program strategies and verticals. It offers a roadmap to those seeking to maximize the performance of their ecosystem and the entrepreneurs within it.  

As we saw at the GEC, this generation of leaders is hungry to democratize opportunities through entrepreneurship. Thanks to the GSER, we know where cities stand at this important junction in history. The report demonstrates that more cities are placing entrepreneurs at the center of economic policy and connects the dots for policymakers seeking to be more competitive on the global stage in a post-pandemic world.

Above all, it offers all ecosystems, regardless of size or wealth, insights and opportunities to level the playing field in a new world order where rules and assumptions have changed. As such, we consider the report to be a call to action, encouraging readers to be a part of a new generation of dreamers, doers, and risk-takers working toward inclusive prosperity for all.