In these difficult financial times, it is good for the public sector to back ideas to boost economic growth.
The Scottish Edge awards, a Dragons' Den-style competition for entrepreneurs, is one such initiative.
Run by Scottish Enterprise, the scheme allows the next generation of tycoons to pitch to business people and leave with a cash prize.
But projects funded by the public purse must tick the boxes of openness and fairness. In the case of the Edge awards, one of the early-round judges was Jim Duffy, CEO of social enterprise, Entrepreneurial Spark.
Duffy, who was not involved in judging the final, is paid to nurture the firms that come into ESpark.
But more than 50% of the Edge finalists were linked to ESpark.
The bulk of the £704,000 won in June went to firms with ties to one of the panelists, a potential conflict of interest. There is no suggestion of wrongdoing on Duffy's part, but the contest would be strengthened by his absence from the judging panel.
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