A Qualitative Study of the Inclusion of Social Enterprise in the Entrepreneurial Education Curriculum

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Despite rising interest amongst students and the general public in social
enterprise, it is often taught as an add-on along with sustainability in more
general entrepreneurship courses. This has led to under-equipping students
with the skills and knowledge they need to start a business in this area. We
spoke to both academics and students, using semi-structured interviews, about
their views of current social enterprise inclusion and what could be improved.
The research found that entrepreneurship academics included social issues in
their courses as part of entrepreneurial education, however, this was at
introductory level and students were frustrated there was little opportunity to
follow up on this interest, especially those in their final year, with no clear path
for those interested. Focus varied between institutions and it was suggested
that the institutional focus on employability statistics could be harmful for
social entrepreneurship education. We suggest that more institutions have
social enterprise modules which are able to be accessed university wide to
allow multidisciplinarity, and separated out from general entrepreneurship at
a higher level to fully focus on these issues to fully prepare those who are
interested in starting or joining a social enterprise.
Keywords: Social Enterprise; enterprise and entrepreneurship education;
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1097-1104
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Conference on Higher Education Advances (HEAd’)
Publication statusPublished - 18 Jun 2021


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