Belarusian Economic Research and Outreach Center

Chapter ”Evolving Entrepreneurial Activities at Post-Soviet Universities” by Radzivon Marozau and co-authors was published

A chapter by Radzivon Marozau, David Urbano and Asuncion Ibanez Romero titled "Evolving Entrepreneurial Activities at Post-Soviet Universities" was published in a book "Higher Education Institutions: Perspectives, Opportunities and Challenges" edited by Joe Maxwell.

ABSTRACT

Stimulating entrepreneurship inside universities and the consequent development of entrepreneurial universities against the backdrop of global reduction of governmental financial support is one of the current foci of academics, university authorities and policy makers from all around the world. These issues are more critical to post-Soviet economies where the level of the entrepreneurial activity and, as a consequence, of entrepreneurship within universities is lower in comparison with western market economies, while the majority of such countries are still trying to develop an entrepreneurship- and innovation-friendly environment. 

In this regard, the aim of this chapter is to explore the influence of a university environment on entrepreneurial activities of students and alumni in the post-Soviet context. Methodologically, we combined the case study methodology and the regression analysis to embrace two levels of analysis: organizational (a university) and individual (students and alumni). Capitalizing on the nature and uniqueness of the Belarusian context, we contribute to the debate on factors shaping an entrepreneurial environment in the context of a post-Soviet university and demonstrate how a university environment influences the entrepreneurial behavior of students and alumni.

The general conclusion to be drawn from the study is that underdeveloped entrepreneurial and business competences and the Soviet heritage that is still visible in attitudes and values restrain employing the abundant human and physical resources of the Belarusian State University to contribute to economic development not only by educating job-seekers but by fostering job-creators and transforming research activity into economic value. However, as the regression analysis showed, existing formal business-related education does facilitate the entrepreneurial activity of alumni.

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