For the developing world, the emerging trend is entrepreneurship education in itself. It is significant and considered a powerful tool for propelling economic growth, as significant as venture capital and incubators. The youth today is exposed to a world of information and rapid change. He is prone to be the captain of his ship more than ever before. Hence the objective is to create awareness of trends and issues being faced in Entrepreneurship Education programs and see how Pakistan can gain from the experience of the developed world. It is also the objective to see how programs have to be designed for teaching and learning by the new generation of the future.
The research methodology has been to examine relevant literature of other regions and compare this to the work done in Pakistan. Its been observed that it has acquired its own field of research methodology and finally is a standalone discipline, with ample work to show its breath and depth.
Our finding is that it’s going to be a different world, calling for planning for a world unknown? Our conclusion is that it is significantly important to make the youth of today gainfully employed after imparting education to them. And Pedagogy is one of the issues that deserve attention in the Entrepreneurship Education. It is a question of evolving knowledge and evolving pedagogy to impart knowledge.
Local experience and theory has to be evolved building the subject. Developing countries will have a host of issues far different from the developed countries. Education policy will play very significant role to resolve these issues. The authors conclude with suggestions that there is now a need to develop theory of entrepreneurship education based on the education theory and not on the theory of management and economics. There should be all out effort to build the ‘entrepreneurship capital’ and to give it central place in the education place.
Keywords:Entrepreneurship Education, Entrepreneurial Generation, Pedagogy, Entrepreneurship Capital
Entrepreneurship Education as the Emerging Trend in Pakistan: Confronting the Issues
I. Introduction: a. Background: The field of entrepreneurship education is in the process of growing and gaining legitimacy and being recognized in the developing countries. In Pakistan it has been an up-hill task and despite efforts it is still an unknown academic field.
But it is somewhat different in USA and in Europe and Japan. There it has recognition and there it has immense recognition as an important factor to keep pace with the economic growth and change required for economic efficiency. It is nurtured to impact the economies of the ‘technological tripod’ of economic growth. No doubt USA leads the way but European Council through the Lisbon Proclamation 2000 had launched itself in pursuit of economic growth through Entrepreneurship. The then President of EC committed the European Union to become the Entrepreneurship Leader as it was acknowledged that new economic growth, and productivity is generated by entrepreneurial activity (as cited by Audretch 2008).
The statement is proclamation of the significance and importance of Entrepreneurship for economic development. In pursuit of entrepreneurship what is required is Entrepreneurship Education and the observation is that the trail it leaves behind is host of the emerging trends and issues which need to be examined and evaluated and worked out. Entrepreneurship Education is the path and road to developing an enterprising environment, building ‘social capital’ and ‘Entrepreneurship Capital’. “This refers to institutions, culture, and historical context that is conducive to the creation of new firms. This involves a number of aspects such as social acceptance of entrepreneurial behavior – – – – the activity of bankers, venture capital agents – – – – – “(Audretsch 2008).
The rationale of this paper evolve around the spirit of these terms and the process of evolving this capital is entrepreneurship education. The purpose of this paper is to explain the importance of entrepreneurship education in the light of compelling evidence surrounding us that it produces an enterprising society or ‘The Entrepreneurial Society’ and economic development. There is significant evidence about the impact of entrepreneurship on economic development (Wennekers et al 2005, Verheul & Thurik 2003, Caree et al 2002, Audretsch et al 2006). “The way entrepreneurial activity has an effect on economy is that it is reflected in the macro-economic growth, value addition, employment generation, export growth, industrialization and poverty reduction”. (Wagha 2010)
Entrepreneurship in the last two decades has achieved a central place in all recent discourse and debate and policymaking on education. There is a need for appropriate educational program at all academic institutions, universities, business schools and secondary schools. “So significant is the role of Entrepreneurship Education that it is considered a powerful tool for propelling economic growth as significant as venture capital and incubators”. A look at policy on education recently framed in different countries around the world reveal that there is emerging need to focus on entrepreneurship education and research. (Lee & Wong 2005, Khan 2006)
We realized through this research that there is a need to look at Entrepreneurship Education from the teaching and learning perspective. And of importance is how Entrepreneurship Education should be taught and the paradigm of research should be education and not merely economic and management. Bechard & Gregoire (2002). It was also observed through empirical research and interviews that there is also the need to focus on the faculty of Entrepreneurship Education. There is an acute shortage of such teachers who are well versed in the pedagogy of Entrepreneurship Education. And according to Dr. Hasan Sohaib Murad, Rector, University of Management and Technology Pakistan (while addressing the audience at a Junior World Entrepreneurship Forum Pakistan (July 2011) : “The problem is our faculty, those who are teaching in business school today. They are teaching in business schools because they were not entrepreneurs.
The other factor that has to be taken in consideration is the role of entrepreneurship in economic development. According to Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) entrepreneurship and economic development are exclusively mutual “GEM is based on the following premise. An economy’s prosperity is highly dependent on a dynamic entrepreneurship sector. This is true across all stages of development. Yet the nature of this activity can vary in character and impact. Necessity-driven entrepreneurship, particularly in less developed regions or those experiencing job losses, can help an economy benefit from self-employment initiatives when there are fewer work options available. More developed economies, on the other hand, can leverage their wealth and innovation capacity, yet they also offer more employment options to attract those that might otherwise become entrepreneurs”. (GEM 2010)
It goes onto explain that the capacity of an economy is dependent upon highly competent individuals and positive societal perception about entrepreneurs. “An economy’s entrepreneurial capacity requires individuals with the ability and motivation to start businesses, and requires positive societal perceptions about entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurship should include participation from all groups in society, including women, a range of groups and education levels and disadvantaged populations. Finally, high-growth entrepreneurship is a key contributor to new employment in an economy, and national competitiveness depends on innovative and cross-border entrepreneurial ventures”. (GEM 2010)
b. Objectives of the Study: So significant is the role of entrepreneurship that the developed countries are perusing it by adopting new educational policies and by introducing strategies to create an ‘Entrepreneurship Capital’. For the developing world that has lagged behind, this is a wakeup call. Therefore the Objective is: to be aware of the issues and see how Pakistan can gain from the experiences of the developed world and evolve a suitable strategy for implementing entrepreneurship education effectively.
It is assumed that, some of the best practices if disseminated will have an impact.
c. Justification: As can be seen that it is essential for all developing countries and Pakistan in particular to undertake various studies pertaining to entrepreneurship, simply because this era of entrepreneurship is as potent as the era of Industrial Revolution. It has the potential for developing countries to catch-up with Developed Countries if the national economic agendas are prudently organized.
d. Statement of the Problem: However some issues surrounding Entrepreneurship Education are: How should entrepreneurship education courses be designed, what should be the structure of courses? What should be the balance between activity based and text based teaching? What should be the ethical domain, and what disciplines would fall in the entrepreneurial ambit of subject? What pedagogy would be considered appropriate to teach entrepreneurship? In the midst of this expansion of courses, these emerge as a challenge how to make teaching entrepreneurship effective. Years of research and considerable debates has dispelled earlier doubts that entrepreneurship cannot be taught, and it was Drucker (1985) who said, “like other disciplines it can be taught”. But the emerging trend of Entrepreneurship Education is compounded by such factors as IT revolution and globalization. The youth today is exposed to a world of information and rapid change. He is prone to be the captain of his ship as he sees opportunities far beyond his imagination. He can evaluate the advantage of going for his own venture. He can see that Entrepreneurship is about change and competition, changing in its wake markets and ushering in technologies that entrepreneurship binds as the ‘social glue’ high-tech and ‘main street’ activities (SBA 1998).
e. Research Question: Therefore the research question that we will attempt to find answer to is: – 1. What issues and trends are being faced by Pakistan in Entrepreneurship Education and what adoption is required to benefit from this trend?
II (a)Research Methodology: My goal is to determine the current status of the subject, by looking at the theory based on the published articles of other regions by leading authorities such as Bechard, Audretch Fayolle, Dana, Plaschka, Hindle & Kuratko. This will help guide future research, but beyond literature review, I also recorded empirical findings and interviews and survey of literature to see the emerging trends in Entrepreneurship Education in Pakistan. The literature reviewed has been some grey literature and some conference papers as these were very current and contemporary thinking on emerging issues and trends. Furthermore the research has been enhanced by visiting foreign conferences for gathering data at doctoral seminars in Europe and America on Entrepreneurship Education. In that sense this is rather epistemological analysis of educational theories and reports on Entrepreneurship Education Trends and Issues. But the problem encountered was that there is not much data available on this subject in Pakistan. This paper therefore undertakes the qualitative approach based on survey, interviews and literature review of this region and of the academic body that has taught the subject and also of others who have written papers on the status of Entrepreneurship Education in Pakistan.
“Primary data include such facts collected from observation, surveys, and even interviews. When secondary data are unavailable and our research questions are unanswered, we have to collect data from primary sources. This proves useful because they are collected specifically for the particular study” (Ghauri & Gronhaug 2002). This is obvious in the case of Pakistan where there is no secondary data on this subject. The investigation attempts to determine differences between the developed and developing countries, describing conditions that already exist, (Say in Pakistan) and why conditions in European and America are different from it. The collection of data is ongoing and eventually synthesized and conclusions are drawn.
II (b)Limitation: The fundamental limitation is that hardly any journals are available in Pakistan on Entrepreneurship Education. No doubt that recent support provided by HEC for library data bases and resource centres has been greatly useful. The other fundamental handicap that the Pakistani researchers or students seeking to adopt this as their subject of specialization would face is lack of faculty. Currently there is no known or accessible faculty available in Pakistan having a PhD Degree in Entrepreneurship Education. Hence there are no doctorates of Entrepreneurship Education available to supervise or act as advisers to students desiring to do a PhD in Entrepreneurship.
III. Literature Review: Discussing the Definition of Entrepreneurship Education as Emerging Trend: The subject of entrepreneurship education begins with the entrepreneur. The study of the Entrepreneur goes beyond the study of the characteristic and the traits of the entrepreneur which is the psychological profile. The entrepreneur is part of the complex process of new venture creation (Gartner 1988). And new venture creation is new economic growth which brings the importance of entrepreneurship and the education process for developing entrepreneurs. Say (1816) defined the entrepreneur as the economic agent. Hence the entrepreneur is one of the dimensions of economic growth. If we were to examine the quotation by Cole (1946) we realize that this unleashes a host of issues and trends associated with entrepreneurship and the promotion of Entrepreneurship Education. Cole (1946, p.3) states that Entrepreneur is one who “Unites all means of production – the labor of the one, the capital or the land of the others – and who finds in the value of the products which results from their employment the reconstitution of the entire capital that he utilizes, and the value of the wages, the interest, and the rent which he pays, as well as the profits belonging to himself”.
This statement explains the process of new venture creation which the entrepreneur is prone to do. It is a complete picture of the role which an entrepreneur performs as an economic player in an economy. Whereas the behavioral view of entrepreneur defines the entrepreneur as a very special person but calling for investigation to understand and define Entrepreneur and Entrepreneurship. They even cropped up when Gartner (1988) examined in what way do we define the Entrepreneur. According to him since the entrepreneur causes entrepreneurship you could explain Phenomenon of Entrepreneurship through traits approach or explain Phenomenon of Entrepreneurship through Behavioral approach. Subsequently this leads to disseminating the knowledge of entrepreneurship education. We are once again confronted with trends to adopt in Entrepreneurship Education and issues to deal with to establish the infrastructure of Entrepreneurship Education e.g. there is no evidence to support successful or unsuccessful leaders. The new trend is to focus on behavior of the leader.
What they do as a leader, and not on what they are, and this aptly applies to research on entrepreneurship and hence the definition which explains and determines for us what influences behavior and performance which define entrepreneurship. (Van de Ven 1980 p.86) We have been amply warned that we should study the behaviors and activities of entrepreneurs. This brings us to the performance of an entrepreneur, the dynamism by which he proceeds as an entrepreneur and hence we call it entrepreneurship. We have come to realize that entrepreneurship can be enhanced by entrepreneurship education. Hence our question is what is entrepreneurship education. According to Bechchard & Toulouse (1998) the definition of Entrepreneurship Education is “A collection of formulized teaching that informs trains and educates anyone interested in participating in social economic development through a project to promote entrepreneurship awareness, business creation or small business development”.
Jones & English (2004) define Entrepreneurial Education as: “Entrepreneurial Education can be viewed broadly in terms of the skills that can be taught and the characteristics that can be engendered in individuals that will enable them to develop new and innovative plans”.
The creation of a discipline confronts trends and issues: Therefore the emerging trends and issues are related to multi-dimensional aspect of entrepreneurship education. The gathering of information and knowledge of this aspect is the fundamental activity of research and education to understand the behavioral phenomenon of entrepreneurship (Gartner 1988).Following the line of reasoning if personality traits could define entrepreneurs, the question of education, training and development would seem irrelevant and the foregone conclusion would be that those who possess the requisite traits should be successful entrepreneurs. As that is not the case we seek constantly ways of educating the entrepreneur to behave in a particular way to become successful. The contemplation of this fact has created a series of issues and trends required for the development of entrepreneurship education programs. In our quest for this answer we get a response from Gartner (1988) that we should follow Mintzbergs advice.
Issues that confront entrepreneurs should be resolved to develop a profound entrepreneurship program along with its multiplicity of dimensions. Each question throws up a new philosophy and search for truth that could be developed into an answer to the issues confronting entrepreneurship education. What roles does the entrepreneur perform in moving information, in making decisions, in dealing with the people? How and why do individuals enter a new venture? The other emerging issue from this kind of reasoning is to what extent is entrepreneurship a science? To what extent is the entrepreneurs work programmable? All such questions resolve the issue of designing new branches of education in the domain of entrepreneurship. These would have to be dealt in accordance to the trends in development, competitiveness, economic growth and resource allocation.