Globalisation has focussed the attention of the corporations worldwide towards the rapidly transforming external business surroundings which include legal, political, socio-economic, technological and the like. With the change in socio-economic environment, there has been a radical change in the social norms, values, patterns, behaviours, and organisational culture. Therefore, shaping and positioning of an entrepreneurial education system that can facilitate young minds to succeed in the international skill race is an integral economic competitiveness concern for the next decade. Accordingly, it becomes imperative to enhance thoroughly the required proficiencies and skill set among young professional students performing in several academic institutions so as to extract the benefits from the emerging opportunities crucial to global competitiveness.
Further, the possession of entrepreneurial abilities with required skill sets are perceived as the key requirements of the globalized economy. Therefore, shaping entrepreneurial attitude provides deep insights into several issues pertaining to various aspects of entrepreneurship including human resource development and/or absorption of innovations.
Although the propensity to pursue enterprise education is comparatively strong in India, the learning support for its development is still at the pioneer stage. Therefore, enterprise education still has a long way to go in order to attain the status of a preferred course among management students in India. Significantly, thus, this stage acts as a valid reason to offer entrepreneurship as a part of co-curricular or extracurricular program across various academic institutions in India. The primary obstacles to teaching entrepreneurship in India encompasses; deficiency of institutionalization, lack of trained teacher’s, short-term focus on results, limitations with pedagogy and the subject not considered as core.
The 21 st century education paradigm needs to pay attention to the emerging challenges andissues faced by the existing educational set up and seek ways to overcome the existing bottlenecks and problems. Further, the competitive knowledge economy demands India as the self reliant nation. However, the problem is deep rooted in our existing education system that are more involved in producing potential job seekers instead of aspiring job creator. Thus, a visionary academic leadership plays a crucial role by formulating strategies revolving around the idea of building modern budding youth with high degree of authenticity, accountability and analytical approach towards problem solving. Accordingly, fostering entrepreneurial culture and resultant mindset conducive to students performing across various academic courses is prerequisite for reshaping India as innovation hub. Significantly, therefore, India needs to establish a healthy entrepreneurship ecosystem to transform it as a ‘City of Startup’s”.
Further, it is explored that the recent endeavour by the government bodies has successfully accomplished the levels of entrepreneurial activities. Additionally, the ‘Make in India’ campaign by the Government of India, stand- up movement and the current start-up focus have provided a Philip to the entrepreneurial mindset and the youth in India are venturing into launch of enterprises. They seem geared up to the idea of self employment and becoming job providers over job seekers. Further, Enterprise education also leads to encouraging women for active leadership roles. Thus, in order to attain the mission of Women empowerment through entrepreneurship education, numerous initiatives have been taken by the government of India by setting up of Entrepreneurial Development Institute (EDI), The National Alliance of Young Entrepreneurs (NAYE), Entrepreneurship Development Institute, Industrial Training Institute (ITI’s) The National Institute for Entrepreneurship and Small Business Development (NIESBUD), Trade Related Entrepreneurship Assistance (TREAD) Indian Council of Women Entrepreneurs (ICWE), World Association of Women Entrepreneurs (WAWE), Associated Country Women of the World (ACWW), National Association of Women Entrepreneurs and Executives (NAWEE), Training of Rural Youth for Self Employment (TRYSEM) etc. for boosting the fervour of women through vocational skills like dressmaking, beautician, shoe and bag production, interior decoration etc. These skill development programmes enables better understanding of various management techniques and/or business strategies and providing them enough financial and emotional support so as to enhance their socio-economic status which is a pre-requisite for the advancement and/or progress of women entrepreneurs.
Interestingly, Business Schools in India have started playing an active role in enhancing knowledge base by enlarging the large pool of entrepreneurs. The various B-Schools like NMIMS (Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies), ISB, Hyderabad (Indian School of Business), National Institute of Industrial Engineering, IIM-Ahmadabad, IIM-Bangalore, Technology Incubation Unit Delhi etc. have already started their journey of facilitating students with global skill sets and mindset to thrive in the entrepreneurial era.
A framework for building effective entrepreneurship education ecosystem is surely the need of the hour and it requires a greater focus on knowledge creation to support the framework. Acknowledging the importance of the right entrepreneurship culture and education for the growth and development of an emerging economy such as India, the present article conclude with the following suggestions:
It is expected that professional institutes and/or universities offering various courses must inculcate conducive and healthy entrepreneurial culture so as to identify their hidden talent, creating awareness among students and to encourage them to undertake more entrepreneurial activities. Secondly, universities and other professional institutions should develop the curriculum focussing entrepreneurial education wherein the major attention should be laid on providing practical exposure on entrepreneurship as compared to the theoretical knowledge. Additionally, universities should not only invite successful entrepreneurs with sufficient expertise but also young professional entrepreneurs for interactive sessions. This would not only arouse the interest among students but also positive mindset towards entrepreneurship. The higher officials i.e Vice Chancellors, Directors etc. involved in the recruitment process should possess the proactive approach in the recruitment of the academicians and should attempt to appoint the applicant with the blend of expertise in teaching and business.
Further, the refinement of teaching methodology in order to boost the entrepreneurship education as the key result area. Thus, the teaching practices should encompass the activities like encouraging competitions for the best business proposals, attractive start-ups plans, formal interactions through round the table conferences/or workshops with practicing entrepreneurs and other experts, computer and behavioural simulation exercises, informal interactions with business personnel’s, discussions of business case studies, Corporate visits etc. Secondly, the academic institutions are the platform ensuring effective interface among various researchers and experts from various nationalities to discuss their vision on entrepreneurship in the existing scenario. Further, the various professional institutions must explore the possible alliances with national and global institutions for collaborative research, entrepreneurial curriculum as well as several range of activities ao as to enhance its ambit. Accordingly, it is suggested that its scope should encompass the Doctoral courses, thereby encouraging investigation in entrepreneurial education through financial aid as well as initiating collaborative research proposals with national and international high level educational institutions. It is expected that all such small steps shall bring a radical transformation in the domain of entrepreneurship education in India. Therefore, such practices and/or efforts exhibits a favourable influence and leading role in accomplishing the dream of becoming India as a prosperous economy.
Lastly, with the increasing challenges of unemployment among Indian youth, entrepreneurial mindset is now a global phenomenon. Thus, the move by most of the professional institutions to inculcate the sense and urge of building entrepreneurial proficiencies is the most welcomed idea. Therefore, entrepreneurial education in India is on high demand. Also, it is expected that the trend shall continue to grow. It is advisable to incorporate the entrepreneurial curriculum at most of the high schools, colleges, graduate school etc. and expectedly, by 2021, the nation shall witness greater penetration of entrepreneurship education across nation. Significantly, thus, entrepreneurship plays a role of a wheel in the socio- economic well being and prosperity of the nation and has started gaining its recognition worldwide.
Thus, such endeavour to develop an efficacious framework for an entrepreneurship education ecosystem in India, facilitated by precursory inputs and evidence should therefore be considered as a conceptual beginning to accomplish improvised design with further validation of the concepts. Innovative research ideas to facilitate the adoption and further development of the framework with empirical results and confirmations will not only add to the existing research base on entrepreneurship but will also assist the administrators of a developing nation.
(The author is PhD Research Scholar, The Business School University of Jammu)