22 SES 01 B, Employability and Transition to Work of Higher Education Graduates
Parallel Paper Session
The higher education system has undergone some changes in recent decades, recurring in several countries, among which we mention the expansion of access and the number of institutions, the academic and social hierarchy among higher education institutions and the growing process of internationalization. At the same time the labor market becomes increasingly selective and unstable (GUERREIRO e ABRANTES, 2004; CHIESI e MARTINELLI, 1997). Thus the conditions of "employability" linked in parallel to three factors: a lifelong learning (CANÁRIO, 2003), training based on the development of professional skills (DUBAR, 2006) and entrepreneurial training, oriented to creating self-employment and for the development of innovative initiatives (FREIRE, 1994).
Most recently in the European context, a policy guideline incorporates a new flap to these trends: the development of actions directed to the formation of an "entrepreneurial spirit" (from primary to university) in a framework of key skills for lifelong learning (COM, 2006). This approach to political and ideological nature is presented as an alternative to the process of professional insertion and justified from the current intensification of barriers in the sphere of work associated with the crisis of employment and flexible working.
In Portugal, the encouragement of entrepreneurship as an alternative or exit to the transition to active life is one of the objectives of the Operational Programmes, enrolled in the National Strategic Reference Framework (NSRF), which includes among its purposes the encouragement of the creation of employment, and the support to young entrepreneurs and the process to transition to active life.
Within the public institutions of higher education in Portugal is possible to see the significant progress of this matter in recent years, the creating of new courses and subjects, the increase in initiatives such as lectures, workshops and conferences about this subject and specially the inclusion of offices or associations of students in order to spread entrepreneurship (ABRANJA, 2008; MOREIRA, 2009).
This paper aims to understand how these policy guidelines were implemented in University of Lisbon and New University of Lisbon besides to know and characterize the agents involved and the actions adopted to promote an "entrepreneurial spirit” in the last decade.
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