The future of work is radically changing. Digital disruption, automation and globalisation are transforming the labour market. Yet higher education in the 21st century is in some ways less relevant and these institutions are moving at a much slower pace than the world around them. Historically employers expected university graduates to be suitable for professional occupations, based on the content of degree programs, but today where fewer jobs involves routine processes, graduates will enter an uncertain world of work where meta-capabilities such as creativity, flexibility and innovative problem-solving are required. These conditions make it imperative for not only business, or arts graduates, but also those in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields to enter the workforce with an entrepreneurial mindset. Entrepreneurial approaches are now being advocated in Australia, following $9.7 billion commitment of the Federal budget for R&D investment and commercialisation, through the National Innovation and Science agenda (NISA, 2015). In Queensland an additional $405 million has been committed to make Queensland an innovation leader nationally. A report on Boosting High-Impact Entrepreneurship, from the Office of the Chief Scientist outline the critical role of universities in the process. However despite all this funding and rhetoric, a shared understanding of the theoretical and pedagogical principles of entrepreneurship is lacking in the higher education sector. This presentation aims to address these gaps by clearly defining entrepreneurship, its theoretical principles relevant for educators and then outlining the approach followed in Startup LaunchLab, designed to enhance graduates’ career aspirations through cultivating an entrepreneurial mindset. Startup LaunchLab embeds an authentic entrepreneurial educational experience into a credit bearing course for a multidisciplinary cohort of students. Experiential entrepreneurship empowers graduates to be confident, innovative, proactive and ready to create the future in emerging sectors. Startup LaunchLab involves business, creative industry and engineering students and evaluates student outcomes. Startup LaunchLab (SLL) is being assessed using a sequential mixed method approach, consisting of survey data collected at the start and completion of the course and interview data collected two months later. Preliminary findings demonstrate that the theoretical principles underpinning SLL, not only enabled students to create a new venture, but the skills acquired also provided a method for entrepreneurial problem-solving and innovating, which is valuable to students working inside or outside traditionalorganisations. This paper contributes theoretically by outlining five principles of entrepreneurial problem-solving and providinga teachable method that can be deployed through an effectual entrepreneurship pedagogy.
2016 Learning & Teaching Week: 2020 Teaching Visions. 2020 - What's Next?, Sunshine Coast, Australia 31 October - 4 November 2016