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Social Entrepreneurship Teaching

Last night I was fortunate to give the opening lecture to the INVENT new tech venture creation programme in DCU. This programme is aimed at research post doctoral students from across the research centres and schools in the university. The programme is a ‘pracademic’ taught programme, aimed to give the students the real ‘low down’ on doing a start-up. At one point in the one of the discussions students were talking about a product aimed at charities and I intervened to discuss social enterprise with them.

It made me think – some postdoc students may be big believers in their potential product, particularly in their ability to change the world, but may be turned off by the idea of ‘commercialisation.’ Perhaps we should be looking more seriously about building into general entrepreneurship courses an element on social entrepreneurship and social enterprise, rather than separating the two subjects out totally all the time. Although it is a good idea to teach social entrepreneurship as a core subject, we may be missing out on spreading the word on social entrepreneurship to a wider audience.

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