Teachers and education specialists gathered in Potsdam to foster an entrepreneurial mindset in European schools

by Sara de Santis

Potsdam group pictureThe first week of November 2014, the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) and the European Commission
(EC) organized the Entrepreneurship360 Capacity Building Seminar (CBS) in Potsdam (Germany) on promoting entrepreneurial education in primary, secondary and vocational education and training institutions. It is part of the CBS series of the Forum on Partnership and Local Development, a networks of practitioners in the field of economic development, employment, skills and social inclusion (read more on the FPLD website ).

This seminar is the climax of the learning journey in which the schools enrolled after being selected through the call for case studies launched in April 2014. This later aimed at gathering and identifying good practices throughout Europe in nurturing the entrepreneurial mind-set in education.

The 27 schools and local organizations’ representatives involved had the possibility to display the initiatives they carry on to provide an entrepreneurial education. It was an occasion for the participants to learn and exchange on their common challenges with their European peers. This rich seminar included presentations provided by seven high-level researchers on why and how entrepreneurial education should be introduced in educational system, and smaller peer learning working group sessions.

During the month preceding the seminar, delegates were invited to test a pilot version of the Entrepreneurship360 opinion survey (one of the pillars of the Entrepreneurship360 project) build around 63 criteria of good practices. This online survey enables school managers and teachers to evaluate the perception of the schools’ activities by its local community and helps identify untapped potential and build a school specific action plan. In order for this opinion survey and its criteria to be relevant to schools, in spite of local context, and involve the end user in the elaboration process, the OECD and the EC strives to include all comments and recommendations from the pilot testers present in Potsdam.

During this major European event, Entrepreneurship 360 brought together in Potsdam a variety of actors dedicated in nurturing a mindset of creativity in schools and in giving pupils and students the willingness and ability to create value for themselves and society as a whole.