Entrepreneurial Skill Development: Harnessing Experience While Building Formal Knowledge and Qualifications in Business
Defining what it means to be an entrepreneur is no easy task. Harding (2006, p. 5) contends that one must ‘define the concept from the ground up’. Franco and Haase (2009, p. 637) maintain that a broader definition is required that views entrepreneurs as continual learners. A recent World Economic Forum report into entrepreneurship education defines an entrepreneur as someone who is creative, innovative and risk taking, and has an ability to translate ‘ideas into action’ (Volkmann et al 2009, p. 18). Dana (2001, p. 405) highlights the fact that ‘there is no universally-accepted definition of entrepreneurs or of entrepreneurship’ in the literature. This evident lack of a comprehensive and widely accepted definition does not detract from the reality that entrepreneurship possesses distinctive features including ‘a capacity for innovation’ (Bruni, Gherardi & Poggio 2004, p. 258). Nor does this apparent definition deficit alter the fundamental and important role that entrepreneurship plays in promoting economic development and vitality. Thus, linking entrepreneurship and education has for quite some time been considered crucial in limiting and reducing rates ‘of long term unemployment’ (Mueller et al 2006, p. 3). Entrepreneurship also widens and strengthens participation in economic activity, particularly for historically marginalised groups such as women (Hisrich & Ozturk 1999).
AuthorEllis, Darren J
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