Entrepreneurial learning in a cross-university curriculum

Jacob Thomsen
UCL University College Denmark

Birgitte Wraae
UCL University College Denmark

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In the existing literature, ecosystems is often broadly defined and include various focuses, for instance industrial, digital, innovation and entrepreneurship suggested by Maciulis & Pilinkiene (2014). The entrepreneurial ecosystem is defined in the domain of entrepreneurship curriculum and will focus on the stakeholder dimension (Brush, C. , Greene, P. & Hart, M. 2001). Furthermore, the entrepreneurial ecosystem is considered as “an emerging organizational form that in many instances has yet to be legitimized and institutionalized” (Foss & Gibson, 2015, p. 249). Adding the educational perspective, we define an educational entrepreneurial ecosystem as a framework of dependent and independent, stakeholders, which engages on different levels in connection to adapt knowledge and value. Each variable plays its own unique role in the ecosystem (Wraae & Thomsen, 2018, UIIN2018 conference).
To gain insights into how all actors in an entrepreneurship education ecosystem learn and gain entrepreneurial knowledge we present a new conceptual framework for understanding the dialogic relationship between stakeholders. The framework links entrepreneurship education and entrepreneurial ecosystems.
Our qualitative research design involves interviews and observations. We tested the framework by studying six international cases all involved in the same entrepreneurial curriculum.
Our findings show that learning is developed in various levels and for individuals in the ecosystem. The ecosystem (Wraae & Thomsen, 2018) presented in the article, is also useful in understanding different learning processes related to dialogical relations (Kolb & Kolb, 2005). Furthermore, it is clear that there is a pattern between maturity skills and entrepreneurial skills (Chang & Rieple, 2013). Our finding therefore, add valuable insight into how learning in an entrepreneurship education ecosystem takes place in ever changing environments (Brush, 2014). Furthermore, our study contributes to development of learning for stakeholders and correlating development between maturity and entrepreneurial skills.