Calling all entrepreneurs! Calling all entrepreneurs!
Australia needs you!
Whilst Australia holds a renowned position in the academic fields of science, technology, engineering and maths, it does not however rank very well for “innovation efficiency”.
Uncovering the known
The report, Boosting High-Impact Entrepreneurship In Australia, found that Australia was ranked 72nd for innovation efficiency on the Global Innovation Index this year. It also found that Australia hadn’t prepared for the dynamic nature of the entrepreneurial market, whereas other countries such as the US, UK and South Korea had all introduced entrepreneurship in schools and educated students on the newly booming start-up culture. The lack of haste in embracing these values have not only halted the opportunity cost of potential economic growth but have also inhibited students in carrying out various innovative ventures.
As a Business and Law student at UTS, I know how imperative it is to have access to to resources that assist and further my education. Access for purposes both in the fields of my degree, but also in adopting an entrepreneurial approach to my studies.
This, in addition with a more supportive learning environment, essentially acts as the cornerstone to not only my scope of learning but to also for the economy in its future prospects in the entrepreneurial market.
With this said, it is essential that the Australian government focuses its efforts in a way that balances the needs of the traditional drivers of economic growth, factors such as interest rates, real wages and exports, with the latest uprise of start-ups.
Studies also show that technology start-ups could add up to $100 billion to Australia’s GDP by 2033, but…
there’s one condition to that forecast, and you guessed it, WE NEED MORE ENTREPRENEURS.
This enhanced GDP is only viable if the country had 20 times the entrepreneurs and a more supportive workplace for them.
Late to the party
Although Australia has opted to increase funding, the delay has us playing catch-up in order to respond to student demand. Additionally, current funding schemes for universities are rewarded based on amount of research produced, rather than the economic or social impact of the work. Academics have responded to this by amping up articles and reducing the pursuit for applied research and commercial proof-of-concept-work.
Time to stand up?
As a direct result of this funding, some universities have begun now incorporating programs that expose students to entrepreneurship and support them to establish start-ups. The report suggests that universities and academic staff should be rewarded for work with student entrepreneurs: “When staff do get involved with student entrepreneurship, it is often an unfunded activity or labour of love”.
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