entrepreneurship education in South Africa

This article was first published in 2019 in the Entrepreneurial Mindset Network eZINE Volume 2 no 1 

The Entrepreneurship Development in Higher Education (EDHE) was established at the end of 2016 from within the University Education Branch of South Africa’s Department Higher Education and Training. The goals of the EDHE Programme are:

Student entrepreneurship, i.e. mobilising the national student and graduate resource to create successful enterprises that will ultimately lead to both wealth and job creation.

Entrepreneurship development in academia, i.e. support academics in instilling an entrepreneurial mindset within all students and graduates through the offering of relevant knowledge, transferral of practical skills and the application of business principles, not only to a specific discipline, but across disciplines.

Developing entrepreneurial universities, i.e. creating a conducive environment that will enable universities to adapt strategically and embark on projects whereby third-stream income can be generated through innovative business ideas.

Image credit: British Council South Africa

The the University Capacity Development Programme of the Department Higher Education and Training emphasises an increasing focus on curriculum development initiatives that examine new and alternative contents and pedagogies which are relevant to the South African context. 

In terms of driving the entrepreneurship development agenda through the curriculum, the EDHE Programme is aimed at embedding entrepreneurship in the curriculum, through flexible curriculum pathways, across disciplines. 

The intention is for entrepreneurship in the curriculum to be relevant to the local context in order to support the ability of graduates to participate meaningfully in society and in the world of work. 

The EDHE Programme spans across institutional and regional boundaries. It is aimed at addressing entrepreneurship development needs at individual institutions, while drawing together regional resources and efforts to the benefit of stakeholders on a national level.

Image credit: British Council South Africa

From left to right: Colm McGivern, British Council South Africa, Norah Clarke, Universities South Africa, Anisa Khan, British Council South Africa and Paul Coyle, Entrepreneurial Mindset Network.

In January 2019, at an EDHE event in Johannesburg, South Africa, Paul Coyle led 4 workshops on the themes of the economic and social impacts of entrepreneurship, the concept & practice of the entrepreneurial university, the 6 stages of the entrepreneurial journey and the power of the entrepreneurial mindset. 

The participants, who came from 29 higher education institutions in South Africa, mapped out how each of them could make their own contribution to developing the entrepreneurial mindsets that will be necessary for the future. ◼️