This paper aims to examine the effects of individual competencies and characteristics linked to educational programmes that contribute to the development of competencies conducive to innovation.
The authors draw on theories of intrapreneurial competencies – i.e. intrapreneurship and competence‐based innovation – and the entrepreneurship education literature. The study uses comprehensive survey data on approximately 11,000 higher education graduates, five years after graduation in 12 European countries, collected in 2005. The authors test hypotheses regarding the effects of individual competencies and study programme characteristics on the probability of introducing innovations at work, using logistic regression.
Several kinds of competencies are found to increase the probability that graduates introduce innovations at work: professional and creative, communications and championing, and brokering do so, while productivity/efficiency does not. Education programmes emphasising the development of entrepreneurial skills and problem‐based learning also promote innovation. Graduates in engineering are particularly innovative, whereas business and administration graduates are least innovative.
The central implication is that intrapreneurial competencies are learnable. The results refer specifically to higher educated persons, five years after graduation.
Organisations that aim at stimulating employee‐driven innovation need to emphasise the development of intrapreneurial, and especially, brokering competencies. Higher education institutions should put more emphasis on the development of entrepreneurial competencies, for example through problem‐based learning.
The study makes an empirical contribution to theories of intrapreneurship and competency‐based innovation, by examining a wide range of competencies that promote innovation by graduate professionals in Europe.
Bjornali, E. and Anne Støren, L. (2012), "Examining competence factors that encourage innovative behaviour by European higher education graduate professionals", Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, Vol. 19 No. 3, pp. 402-423. https://doi.org/10.1108/14626001211250135Download as .RIS
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