The purpose of this paper is to evaluate an entrepreneurship training and education programme, which has already had five editions in the Sabor region of Portugal’s northern interior. This evaluation was conducted in order to propose new guidelines to improve the Sabor Entrepreneurship Programme (SEP).
The research included primary data collection using mixed methods (i.e. quantitative and qualitative). Questionnaires were distributed to 103 entrepreneurs who participated in the SEP, and interviews were conducted with entities involved in developing this programme. The data were processed using cross-sectional content analysis of the interviews and descriptive analysis of the completed questionnaires in order to ascertain the opinions of all the parties involved in the SEP.
The results show that the SEP has been modified throughout the five editions, which has contributed to better performance. Based on the findings, new guidelines were proposed for the programme, such as the implementation of new phases and improvement of various methods used. The proposed phases include the validation and full development of business ideas, management decision training for entrepreneurs, help with financing solutions and support during new companies’ first three years. The results also indicate that the SEP needs to create an entrepreneurial ecosystem that includes public policies and the involvement of other local entities that are active in the region and that have the skills entrepreneurs need.
This study’s findings have theoretical and practical implications, which provide empirical evidence of how evaluating entrepreneurship education and training programmes can make them more effective and efficient. In addition, the results contribute to the evolution of the existing knowledge about entrepreneurial ecosystems.
This work is supported by European Structural and Investment Funds in the FEDER component, through the Operational Competitiveness and Internationalization Programme (COMPETE 2020) (Project No. 006971 (UID/SOC/04011); Funding Reference: POCI-01-0145-FEDER-006971); and national funds, through the FCT – Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology under the project UID/SOC/04011/2013.
Galvão, A., Marques, C. and Ferreira, J. (2019), "Evaluation of an entrepreneurship training programme: a proposal for new guidelines", Education + Training, Vol. 61 No. 2, pp. 136-152. https://doi.org/10.1108/ET-11-2018-0228Download as .RIS
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