22 SES 03 B, Enterpreneurship in Teaching
Entrepreneurship, as a driver of capitalism and economic activity, has become one of the ‘hot topics’ in today’s society influencing strongly the field of education. In the global knowledge-based economy, skills and capabilities of individuals have been acknowledged as important sources of competitiveness, and more and more expectations are pointed towards education and lifelong learning. In recent years increasing attention has been paid on the opportunities of entrepreneurship education (EE) which aims to encourage individual responsibility and personal effort in the constantly changing and insecure societal circumstances and in the competitive world of work (van Gelderen 2010; Gibb 2002, Hytti & O’Gorman 2004). Also in European HE policy promoting entrepreneurship education and developing entrepreneurial competences and mind set has become an important mission (European Commission 2011), and an ideal of a self-responsible entrepreneurial individual who is capable of high tolerance of uncertainty and risk taking is constructed in these endeavours. Examining how university students define entrepreneurial subjectivity, the paper goes on grass root level to analyse how the ideal of entrepreneurial subjectivity defined in the policy narrative of entrepreneurship has been adopted among students. Further, the role of EE as a mediator of this ideal is discussed.
Not much is known about how the entrepreneurial ethos is internalized and how it transforms and reshapes people (Brunila 2012, 479). Also there is little research on how students negotiate the thematic of entrepreneurship (Komulainen, Korhonen & Räty 2013, 1081). In this study our overall aim is to examine how the policy level ideal of entrepreneurial subjectivity has been adopted among university students. We examine how university students define entrepreneurial subjectivity,and further, how students define themselves in terms of this type of subjectivity.In addition, we investigate whether students’ definitions change during an entrepreneurship course. Finally we discuss how students’ definitions relate to policy level ideal of entrepreneurial subjectivity. By comparing the policy ideal of self-responsible entrepreneurial individual and students’ definitions we aim to discover whether students challenge the neoliberal meta-narrative of entrepreneurship (Down 2009; Peters 2001; Bengtsson 2014), or whether the policy narrative is taken for granted and adopted unquestionably. We consider important the question of whether certain manner of understanding one’s subjectivity seems to be an only way to be heard and included in today’s society (Brunila 2011, 424). A central tension discussed in the article is the argument of the necessity of entrepreneurship education to empower students to face the uncertain future versus the notion of entrepreneurship education as a form of neoliberal governance.
The theoretical framework of the study is based on Foucauldian concepts of governmentality and enterprising self (Rose 1992; Foucault 1982). We are interested in analysing how the practices of governmentality are present in entrepreneurship education and in students’ definitions of entrepreneurial subjectivity. The concept ‘enterprising self’ refers to self-technology and self-control through which one reflects and adopts one’s own personality and capabilities according to the principles of autonomisation and responsiblisation. For an enterprising self, life is as an enterprise, and to survive and succeed in it one must try to maximise his/her personal resources and capabilities. (Rose 1999, 154; Brunila 2012, 478.) By taking this (post-) Foucauldian approach we aim to question what is taken for granted in EE. We take a look beyond the premises of entrepreneurship education, and its definitions in HE policy, critically evaluating some of its assumptions.
Bengtsson, A. (2014) Enterprising career education: the power of self-management. International Journal of Lifelong Education, 2014, VOL. 33, NO. 3, pp. 362–375, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/02601370.2014.896085 Brunila, K. (2012) A Diminished Self: entrepreneurial and therapeutic ethos operating with a common aim. European Educational Research Journal, Volume 11 Number 4 2012, pp. 477–486. Brunila, K. (2011) The Projectisation, Marketisation and Therapisation of Education. European Educational Research Journal. Volume 10 Number 3 2011, pp. 421–432 Down, B. (2009) Schooling, productivity and the enterprising self: beyond market values, Critical Studies in Education, 50:1, 51-64, DOI: 10.1080/17508480802526652 European Commission (2011) Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the regions. Supporting growth and jobs – an agenda for the modernisation of Europe's higher education systems. Brussels, 20.9.2011. COM 2011. 567 final, http://eurlex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=COM:2011:0567:FIN:EN:PDF Foucault, M. (1982) The subject and power. In Michel Foucault: Beyond structuralism and hermeneutics, ed. H. Dreyfus and P. Rabinow, pp. 208–26. Brighton: Harvester Press. Gibb, A.A. (2002) In pursuit of a new ‘enterprise’ and ‘entrepreneurship’ paradigm for learning: creative destruction, new values, new ways of doing things and new combinations of knowledge, International Journal of Management Reviews, Vol. 4 No. 3, pp. 233-69. Hytti, U.& O’Gorman, C. (2004) “What is ‘enterprise education’? An analysis of the objectives andmethods of enterprise education programmes in four European countries”, Education + Training, 46 (1), pp.11–23 Komulainen, K., Korhonen, M. & Räty, H. (2013) On entrepreneurship, in a different voice? Finnish entrepreneurship education and pupils’ critical narratives of the entrepreneur, International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, 26:8, pp. 1079-1095, DOI: 10.1080/09518398.2012.731530 Peters, M. (2001) Education, Enterprise Culture and the Entrepreneurial Self: A Foucauldian Perspective. Journal of Educational Enquiry, Vol. 2, No. 2, 2001, pp. 58-71. Rose, N. (1999) Governing the Enterprising Self, in Paul Heelas & Paul Morris (Eds) The Values of the Enterprise Culture: the moral debate, pp. 141-164. London: Routledge. Rose, N. (1992) Governing the enterprising self. In P. Heelas & P. Morris (eds.) The Values of the Enterprise Culture: The Moral Debate. London: Routledge. van Gelderen, Marco (2010) Autonomy as the guiding aim of entrepreneurship education. Education + Training, Vol. 52 Iss 8/9 pp. 710 - 721
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