Blenker, Per4; Dreisler, Poul1; Kjeldsen, John Ibsen6; Meibom, Helle4
1 Department of Management, Aarhus School of Business, Aarhus BSS, Aarhus University2 Department of Marketing and Statistics, Aarhus School of Business, Aarhus BSS, Aarhus University3 Research on Entrepreneurship and Small Business Developments, Aarhus School of Business, Aarhus BSS, Aarhus University4 unknown5 Department of Management, Aarhus BSS, Aarhus University6 Department of Management, Aarhus BSS, Aarhus University
There has been discussion for some years about whether entrepreneurship could be learned - and whether it should be taught as part of University Studies in general - and more particularly as part of Business Studies. The most widespread answer today seems to be, that yes, it can be learned and that it should be taught. One problem is that traditional forms of teaching at university and business schools have shown themselves quite inappropriate with respect to enhancing the motivation and compe-tencies of students towards innovation and entrepreneurship. This phenomenon is increasingly dealt with in literature and has now led to the publication of special issues of journals, annual workshops on teaching entrepreneurship, and even an academic journal dedicated solely to the study of this phenomenon. The phenomenon holds several dilemmas; one of which is whether teaching should be for en-trepreneurship or about entrepreneurship; another concerns the foundation of teaching - whether it should be based on management theories or based on some not-as-yet-defined the-ory of entrepreneurship and intra-preneurship; a third dilemma is the situating of this educa-tion - should it be placed within the secure context of the university auditorium or out in small firms - or should it perhaps situate itself in the twilight between academia and practice; a fourth is whether students should work individually (the heroic Schumpeterian entrepreneur) or collectively (the entrepreneurial network entrepreneur perspective); a fifth is the question of how the substance of what we teach is formulated - whether entrepreneurship is conceptual-ized as an art or a science. Most of these dilemmas are related to the relationship between learning and teaching entre-preneurship, and to the question of whether we seek enterprising behaviour or entrepreneur-ship. The paper takes its starting point in the personal experiences and the accompanying dissatis-faction of the authors, in respect to the way they so far have done things themselves - being involved in courses such as "entrepreneurship", "the renewal function of the firm", and a "MBA in Change Management". The authors are also involved in the creation of a "Centre for Entrepreneurship" in Aarhus, involving four universities and schools of higher education which mission is 1) supporting an innovative culture of entrepreneurship 2) increasing the number of knowledge-based entrepreneurs and 3) strengthening the educational milieu for entrepreneurship. However, this paper is also part of a larger study of pedagogy and learning processes within innovation and entrepreneurship financed by the Danish Agency for Trade and Industry. The paper questions how entrepreneurship is learned and how it can be taught. In attempting to answer this question the paper recognizes that: 1) When dealing with the dilemmas raised above the central task is not to chose between them - but to transcend them by asking the question differently 2) Teaching entrepreneurship at university has several goals; it involves different groups of students and can be done through a variety of approaches. By isolating a variety of goals for teaching, a variety of student or target groups and a variety of approaches for teaching and learning, the paper seeks to transcend traditional ways of asking questions about how to teach entrepreneurship.
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13th Global IntEnt Conference, Grenoble, France, 2003