How universities can support more student entrepreneurs
Fast-growth entrepreneurial ventures are essential for prosperity and social progress. Entrepreneurs create value by seizing opportunities, assuming risks, solving problems and taking action. They take risks in creating and commercialising innovative technologies in ways that larger businesses are unable to. Sometimes these technologies open completely new markets, transforming industries. Tesla is a good example.
But there are growing concerns of a possible steep downturn in the development of ideas which feed the early stages of new business formation. Changes in the university sector caused by the pandemic and geopolitical tensions reshaping the global economy lie at the heart of these worries.
The encouragement of student entrepreneurs should become part of the fabric of the university: a key component of their missions of contributing to prosperity and social progress, especially after the trauma of 2020. Student entrepreneurs help build and leverage university’s international connections, and some in future may become important philanthropic donors. Perhaps most importantly, they add significantly to the vibrancy and innovativeness that surround universities, and clearly demonstrates their social and economic contributions.