Legal and organisational obstacles to implementing and enhancing entrepreneurship education can involve bureaucratic hurdles that stand in the way for university-business collaboration, legal issues to quality assurance and accreditation of programmes, data security and intellectual property rights. These problems mostly root in the different logics of university and business organisation. While the first has to apply regulations on public funding and serve the public good, the latter mostly orient to markets and profitability.

The problem

Institutional regulations can stand in the way of implementing entrepreneurship education. These regulations can, among others, include:

  • Funding problems, while there might be sufficient resources available, institutions might be restricted to spend the funds on assets related to entrepreneurship education, e.g., provision of seed money for students’ business start-ups or investing in infrastructure that is not directly linked to educational or research functions.
  • Funding regulations: Incentives for academic staff might not stimulate their engagement of entrepreneurship education or entrepreneurship as such. E.g. regulations for promotion might put too much focus on publications, while not recognising educational achievements or the development of business ideas.
  • Quality assurance: Integrating entrepreneurship education in curricula and setting up special entrepreneurship programmes eventually requires that programmes must renew or undertake the full accreditation procedure.
  • Data security and intellectual property rights: Both can hinder university-business collaboration as students might not be able to access data they need for their studies. Also, the exploitation of innovations that were developed in entrepreneurship education might be restricted/limited.
  • Legal issues, involving the insurance of students might limit their chances to do internships and work in industry premises.

Solutions at institutional level

  • The implementation and enhancement of entrepreneurship education needs the support of legal and other experts, e.g., for question of quality assurance or funding. Integrating these experts from the start can prevent that implementation is not hindered or blocked when interventions will be implemented.
  • Institutions also need to review their funding regulations and incentives for students and staff. Also, the founding of spin-offs and extra-university structures needs to be considered.
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Other relevant resources
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Links to selected HEInnovate case studies
  • University of Roviri I Virgili - Organisational Capacity, people and incentives
  • Utrecht University:Alignment for impact
Further reading
  • Bin Yusoff, Mohd Nor Hakimin; Zainol, Fakhrul Anwar; Bin Ibrahim, Mohamed Dahlan (2015): Entrepreneurship Education in Malaysia's Public Institutions of Higher Learning--A Review of the Current Practices. In International Education Studies 8, pp. 17–28.
  • Hyclak, Thomas; Barakat, Shima (2010): Entrepreneurship Education in an Entrepreneurial Community. In Industry and Higher Education 24, pp. 475–486. DOI: 10.5367/ihe.2010.0018.