Purpose – Despite a growing body of literature in the field, there is still considerable uncertainty as to whether entrepreneurs are born or made, which has led to an ongoing debate in the entrepreneurship academy about whether we can actually teach individuals to be entrepreneurs. With this in mind, this two‐part paper aims to address the question of whether or not entrepreneurship can be taught. Design/methodology/approach – In part I the importance of entrepreneurship in a modern, constantly changing environment is outlined, and the various ways in which entrepreneurship programmes can be categorised are considered. Attention is given to the various difficulties associated with the design of programmes, as well as their objectives, content and delivery methods. Part II of the paper focuses on the difficulties associated with programme evaluation and the various approaches adopted to determining and measuring effectiveness. This leads to a discussion on whether or not entrepreneurship can be successfully taught. Findings – Despite the growth in entrepreneurship education and training programmes, the paper reports that little uniformity can be found. Attention is drawn to the art and the science of entrepreneurship, with the consensus that at least some aspects of entrepreneurship can successfully be taught. Originality/value – The authors highlight the need for evaluating programmes and for educators and trainers to have a fuller understanding of what they wish to achieve from their programme from the outset in order to ensure a more accurate assessment of the outcomes.
Education + Training – Emerald Publishing
Published: Feb 1, 2005
Keywords: Entrepreneurs; Cost effectiveness; Education; Training; Teaching