Central and Eastern European Countries (CEEC) are often analysed in the same geopolitical context; however, their transformation from centrally-planned economies to knowledge-driven national innovation systems varies from country to country. In 2017, Springer Open published a book ‘Entrepreneurship in Transition Economies: Diversity, Trends, and Perspectives’, edited by Sauka and Chepurenko. The book focuses on the entrepreneurship dynamics across CEEC, while emphasizing aspects, such as the number of opportunity-driven entrepreneurs, innovation inactivates and activities, capabilities to find niche in the market dominated by big companies, family business perspectives, and many other factors.
GILE Experts Miliūtė and Laužikas (2017) prepared one chapter for this Springer Open book ‘The role of education on entrepreneurship in Lithuania’. Within their publication they examine the effects of early stage and post-school education on entrepreneurial intentions, perception, motives, and activities among adults in Lithuania. The triangulation model is used (quantitative survey, qualitative expert interviews and scientific literature analysis) to identify the main effects of education on entrepreneurship via such intermediary factors as the percentage of entrepreneurs who are confident in their capabilities, the fear of failure, social image of entrepreneurs, innovativeness, and the role of culture on the entrepreneurship dynamics in general.
According to the authors, the Lithuanian education system, which currently undergoes major education reforms, should focus on sustainability and long-term targets of educational organizations. The changes in national education systems might be caused by both incremental and radical reforms, but they do not have immediate impacts on the entrepreneurship dynamics. Therefore, GILE experts accentuate the perception on education, its role on entrepreneurship, entrepreneurial career choice, as well as social status of entrepreneurs. Apart from focusing on the number of educational organizations and their efficiency, the Government should emphasize the quality and effects of education in the longer run, while paying a special attention to the entrepreneurship dynamics in high-tech industries, service and social innovations as well as the Triple Helix Model, where all three parties (Government/ Public, Academia/ Science and Business/ Entrepreneurship) are involved in concrete innovative and value-adding projects, driven by smooth knowledge sharing, efficient R&D transfer mechanisms, as well as sustainable start-up ecosystems.
A sufficient supply of graduates with right competences and attitude in the leading Lithuanian industries are necessary to attract foreign direct investments and improve the market conditions for further employment and entrepreneurial initiatives. The number of graduates does not correspond to the number of creative leaders; thus, a special attention should be paid to entrepreneurship education.
Sustainability of education system is one of the most critical challenges, according to Miliute. GILE experts bring into question the following challenges:
- Do we really have a clear vision of our education system?
- Do we employ monitoring models to test the quality of our education services?
- How will this new reform affect Lithuania’s international competitiveness?
- Do we acknowledge the role of perception of education?
- Do we have a clear strategy of entrepreneurial education?
- Do we know how to measure education impacts on entrepreneurship?
- What about the productivity and creativity of future graduates?
- Is our education system transparent and explicit enough to future leaders and employers?
- What credible researches are conducted to support a new education policy?
All these topics must be tackled before any reform begins. Some critical points on how symbiosis between education and entrepreneurship works are discussed in the chapter on the role of education on entrepreneurship in Lithuania, which is available via: https://link.springer.com/book/10.1007/978-3-319-57342-7
Reference: Laužikas M., Miliūtė A. (2017) The Role of Education on Entrepreneurship in Lithuania. In: Sauka A., Chepurenko A. (eds) Entrepreneurship in Transition Economies. Societies and Political Orders in Transition. Springer, Cham; ISBN: 978-3-319-57341-0 (Print) 978-3-319-57342-7 (Online)