To boldly go: Adventures at the frontiers of enterprise and entrepreneurship

Professor Kurt L Allman

Almost a quarter of a century ago a number of policy initiatives collided to support entrepreneurial education, business start-ups, and enterprise incubation within the sphere of UK Higher Education Institutions. Interventions were designed to create a flow of entrepreneurs capable of creating wealth at the forefront of technology, based on observations of start-up success from American university ecosystems. This was complemented by European political investment in social funding to support the young and unemployed in realising innovative business ideas which broadened to the reach of universities. 24 years later, enterprise and entrepreneurship has become mainstream within the UK’s educational provision. However, the region’s ability to generate start-ups and scale those businesses remains problematic. The lecture reflects on the original ambitions of enterprise education, the trials and tribulations of its development, and its prospects given the current economic challenges. Looking forward, given significant changes to the funding realms of regional economies and business support, there is consideration of how this may be re-positioned within the context of our region’s ambition to level-up.

Professor Kurt Allman holds a personal Chair of Enterprise, and is Pro-Vice Chancellor for Science, Business and Enterprise at the University of Chester.

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