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Commentary & Insights on Entrepreneurship The Top of Mind blog brings an array of editorial views to current events shaping the world of entrepreneurship. Engage, exchange, and expand your own view of the world!

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From Concept to 34 Cities in 24 Months

Recently, we celebrated the two-year anniversary of the launch of 1 Million Cups. We never try to hide the fact that 1 Million Cups was/is still a large experiment in how to build grassroots entrepreneurial communities. When we look back in two years, there are a few things that we are very proud of and want to highlight.

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Posted by: Nate Olson
on April 17, 2014
Startup Genome: A Grassroots Effort For Helping Startups

When you hear the term "genome," it might take you back to your high school biology class, where your teacher talked about the many zillions of pieces of data that are contained in DNA. You can think of a Startup Genome a bit the same way.

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Posted by: Thom Ruhe
on April 03, 2014
A Little Jazz + A Little Networking = Big Things in Pittsburgh

Every Thursday evening in downtown Pittsburgh, something special happens at Little E's Jazz and Blues Club. During happy hour each week, entrepreneurs get together to tap into what's hot in the Pittsburgh start-up arena. Over drinks and cool jazz, they have the opportunity to interact and create relationships with potential financiers, university incubators, economic development thought leaders and other business stars.

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Posted by: Annette Beck
on March 17, 2014
How Co-Working Spaces Lost Their Buzz

There's been a growing resurgence of working areas of long tables with copious amounts of white boards. They call them co-working spaces. Since the coining of the phrase in early 2000s, they've grown into warehouse size places with cubical conference rooms and modern furniture, becoming a hip thing for entrepreneurial ecosystems and startups across the globe. But recently, I've come to a realization: Co-working spaces are lame.

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Posted by: Amanda Schnieders
on February 06, 2014
Casting A Wider Net With Community Colleges

Innovation Fund America (IFA), our program delivering high-impact education, coaching and pre-seed funding to scalable, technology-based startups via community colleges around the country, has quietly been having a big couple of months. It's a complicated and demanding program to launch and it's taken nearly a year and a half to get to this point, but we're excited that IFA is now open for business in two communities--and we're really just getting started.

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Posted by: Jonathan Robinson
on January 30, 2014
The 5 Best Mistakes We Made in 2013 (and How We're Learning From Them)

With 1 Million Cups, as with any startup, our tendency is to put our best foot forward. We spend a lot of time talking about all of the great successes that we've had over the past year--and there have been many. But one of the things that makes our program special is that sense of having a safe space to share what you haven't done well and what you're struggling with on a day-to-day basis.

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Posted by: Nate Olson
on January 15, 2014
Emerging Entrepreneurs in the Big D

Can you guess where the follow startups were founded-- GameStop, Woot, Words with Friends, SOFTLAYER? Probably Silicon Valley, right? No. How about Boston? Wrong again. I'll give you a hint: it's the fourth largest media market in the country, home to 18 Fortune 500 companies and boasts two major airports, serving as headquarters for two major airlines. Sounds like a pretty good place to start a company, right? Dallas, and the surrounding area called the "Metroplex", sure thinks so and it wants you to start thinking so as well. On Tuesday, I had the opportunity to catch a glimpse of the emerging startup scene in Dallas. I was pleasantly surprised with what I found here.

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Posted by: Cameron Cushman
on December 06, 2013
Reverse Pitch Connects Corporations With Entrepreneurs

Something extraordinary happened in Kansas City last Thursday. For the second year in a row, some of Kansas City's largest organizations participated in a reverse pitch. KCNext, the host and organizer, brought in a capacity crowd of over 200 entrepreneurs and other Global Entrepreneurship Week event participants. There were 65 events in Kansas City spread across a week and a half. But this event was different. This one was special.

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Posted by: Nathan Kurtz
on November 25, 2013
Coming Soon To A Community College Near You: A New Mentor For Startups

If you've been paying attention to our work at Kauffman for a while, it should come as no surprise to you that we're committed to making community colleges a front door to entrepreneurship. In particular, we see tremendous potential in these schools to support innovative, high-growth, technology-based startups in their communities, whether their founders are students, researchers, experienced entrepreneurs or full-time professionals preparing to take their first leap into entrepreneurship.

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Posted by: Jonathan Robinson
on October 17, 2013
Startup Scene: Mexico City

When one thinks of Mexico City, startup companies would not normally be at the top of anyone's mind. But, I had the chance to spend a few hours with some of the local entrepreneurial organizers there last week and was very impressed with what I saw.

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Posted by: Cameron Cushman
on October 08, 2013

Twitter Updates

  • Tax Season is over. Now let's talk numbers you might actually want to see | 5 Must-Read Articles in Entrepreneurship http://t.co/ZWoyW5svb4
  • Seattle Provides Nurturing Environment for Women Entrepreneurs http://t.co/1rheVajZYE #womenentrepreneurs #seattle
  • "We started @WarbyParker to be a pretty disruptive company and challenge convention" http://t.co/EtbYBq747z via @KauffmanFDN
  • RT @iStartorg: Tony Carbajo of @titleboxing shares how following his passion lead to success: http://t.co/VpgQXaY5VR via @eshiporg
  • RT @KauffmanFDN Fill in the blank: The most important quality to look for in a co-founder is _______________. http://t.co/lMwCvFdZxN