The Cedefop peer learning event on Guidance supporting entrepreneurship learning and entrepreneurship in Europe - Policy, practice and future potential took place in Thessaloniki, Greece, on 25-26 November 2010.
The event was debating the findings of the soon-to-be-released European wide Cedefop study on identifying and examining how to integrate guidance in entrepreneurship learning in vocational education and training (VET) as well as in higher education (HE) across the EU and EEA countries. Moreover, the study was exploring guidance provision to support career management of entrepreneurs at the initial phase of their business start-up.
The event was specifically addressing measures available in the Member States to provide guidance to support young people’s entrepreneurial learning as well as career management of adult self-employed people. In addition, the recent European level action to promote entrepreneurship and entrepreneurship education was presented and the future policy and strategy cooperation across Europe was discussed. (See powerpoint presentations below.)
The event concluded that in the area of entrepreneurship education/training and entrepreneurship, among other things,
• policy, practice and research should be more strongly linked (i.e. a more comprehensive evidence base is needed to support policy making at EU and national levels);
• coordination and cooperation between different policy fields should be strengthened across Member States (incl. employment, education, entrepreneurship and industry);
• education and training systems should support the acquisition of entrepreneurial skills from primary to tertiary education (i.e. curricular development);
• education-and-business life cooperation should be improved as to allow students during their studies to have real hands-on experiences in companies/business life;
• flexible learning paths for combining periods of study with periods of entrepreneurial activity within a higher education degree should be facilitated;
• teachers and guidance practitioners should become more competent as to be able to provide learners and new/aspiring entrepreneurs with entrepreneurship related support (i.e. initial and continuing training of teachers and guidance practitioners);
• role models (i.e. successful young entrepreneurs) to be used more extensively to promote entrepreneurship as a career option for young people who still are in education and training;
• mentoring schemes for new/aspiring entrepreneurs should be further developed as mentoring is an efficient method to support a mentee’s career management, professional and business skills;
• networking and peer support among entrepreneurs should be used more systematically for mutual learning (i.e. sharing success stories and challenges);
• for business start-ups access to funding as well as to supporting legal and administrative information, advice, guidance and counselling should be facilitated.
A wide range of experts were participating in the event, such as representatives of the European Commission, Ministry level authorities and national bodies from the Member States, academic lecturers and researchers, guidance practitioners, project managers, entrepreneurs, non-governmental actors and coordinators of EU-level networks/action programmes.
More information can be obtained from:
Mr Mika Launikari, Project Manager (Lifelong Guidance)
Ms Joanne Basiakou, Secretary (Lifelong Guidance)