The truth is: Neither successful policymaking nor true entrepreneurship can exist without the other. As European innovators, we’re talking about this now because our continent’s tech sector — and all the potentially world-changing seeds of ideas contained therein — is at a crossroads. Europe lags behind giants like the US and China in both the sheer number of innovative companies and in market growth. Fragmented by nature, Europe is an especially challenging case in building an ideal environment for international businesses to thrive. If recent history (read: the last few years) teaches us anything, it’s that the cause of Europe’s slower growth isn’t from lack of entrepreneurial ambition or investors. On the contrary, it’s from the many barriers that slow the pace of development for these new companies — from existing, country-specific tax laws to proposed liability regulations that could crush startups before they have a chance to start at all. Facing the truth about fair regulation A recent white paper published by jointly by Allied for Startups and Silicon Allee, The Impact of Regulation on the Tech Sector, saw over 180 European investors giving their anonymous input on the topic. Members of Berlin’s tech ecosystem also weighed in at an event after the white paper was published, echoing the sentiments of the paper. Results make clear that European tech could experience major growth — if only it was afforded the right conditions. Most of the proposed regulations in Europe that affect startups tend to be unnecessarily reactive instead of strategic. Policymakers draft legislation with the intention of limiting large companies, but they often forget that these strict laws also apply to growing startups with fewer resources and less global influence. It’s a pattern that shouldn’t have began in the first place, but now it needs to be broken.