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Towards an Innovation and Entrepreneurship Ecosystem: A Case Study of the Central University of Technology, Free State

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dc.contributor.author De Jager, H.J
dc.contributor.author Mthembu, T.Z
dc.contributor.author Ngowi, A.B
dc.contributor.author Chipunza, C
dc.date.accessioned 2018-08-14T11:09:58Z
dc.date.available 2018-08-14T11:09:58Z
dc.date.issued 2017
dc.identifier.issn 0971-7218
dc.identifier.issn 0973-0796
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/11462/1491
dc.description Published Article en_US
dc.description.abstract According to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) 2015 Global Report (GEM, 2015), South Africa (SA) had the lowest youth entrepreneurial propensity of only 23.3 per cent. Among the sub-Saharan African countries surveyed, Uganda recorded the highest youth entrepreneurs with 55.6 per cent of the youth population involved in nascent, new or established businesses. South Africa had the lowest youth entrepreneurship participation of only 12.8 per cent, and recorded the highest level of non-entrepreneurial youth with 63.9 per cent of the youth population (GEM, 2015). According to Puuka (2014), SA has not yet unleashed its entrepreneurial potential. Despite the importance of small- and medium-sized enterprises for the economy and job creation, SA’s established business rate is only 2.3 per cent—the second lowest in the world. South Africa needs new job creators to solve the job crisis. A new philosophy and approach to education in general are required; more specifically in a higher education sub-system of universities of technology in SA that is designed to lead to work opportunity-enhancing outcomes. The Central University of Technology, Free State (CUT), SA has, in line, with its Vision 2020 that focuses on producing quality social and technological innovations for socio-economic developments set a goal of transforming CUT into an innovative and entrepreneurial university, and of becoming a robust agent for socio-economic development in the city and the region. This article gives an overview of the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Ecosystem established at the University, the city and the region; the creation of an increasingly robust innovation and entrepreneurship pipeline; and initiatives that started in 2012 in the field of curriculum innovation, and innovation and entrepreneurship education later in 2014. These initiatives, together with international examples cited, show that universities could pursue the path to innovation and entrepreneurship education with outcomes that impact the broader society. True to the universities of technology’s general philosophy of education, the path involves innovation, entrepreneurship education, research, idea generation and technology transfer. Based on a literature study of global perspectives on entrepreneurship education and lessons to be learnt, the paper discusses the enablers to promote entrepreneurship education at CUT and key elements of the University’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Strategy. Furthermore, it shares successes and some challenges of these efforts at CUT, which are evident in the increasing national recognition of our innovation and entrepreneurship activities. The impact of the Innovation and Entrepreneurship ecosystem on the knowledge production from CUT in the past few years are also illustrated. The article concludes that the overarching challenge to ensuring high impact and relevance is dependent on the development and successful implementation of an Innovation and Entrepreneurship Ecosystem, buy-in of all internal and external stakeholders and dedicated resources. en_US
dc.format.extent 1 925 669 bytes, 1 file
dc.format.mimetype Application/PDF
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.publisher Science Technology and Society en_US
dc.relation.ispartofseries Volume 22;Issue 2,
dc.title Towards an Innovation and Entrepreneurship Ecosystem: A Case Study of the Central University of Technology, Free State en_US
dc.type Article en_US

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