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Summer School 2019 - "Social Entrepreneurship in Developing Countries"

From the idea to the foundation of a business. Find out what SPRING and AGEP students learned at the Summer School 2019.

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Many students who return to their home countries after a longer stay abroad are initially frustrated. The local situation and conditions are unsatisfactory and stuck, there is no room for new fresh ideas. In addition, they are seen as overqualified or extremely ambitious and pose a threat to executives.

Therefore it is helpful for students to deal with concepts, methods and practices which offer alternatives to the classical labour market, because the work as independent consultants in development projects or the establishment of own enterprises is so far rarely considered.

This is exactly where the Summer School "Social Entrepreneurship in Developing Countries" of the Impact Hub Ruhr starts. At the end of May 2019 it was carried out for the third time with the students of the SPRING Master's programme - this time also with external students of other AGEP degree programmes.

Benedikt Brester, one of the managing directors of the Impact Hub Ruhr, studied spatial planning at the TU Dortmund himself and developed the concept for the Summer School in close cooperation with SPRING Coordinator Dr. Anne Weber. During two days, the students are taught methods from design thinking to business model development in practical workshops, so that they learn to transform an idea into a business model. At the end, each team presents its project to a jury and thus gets a first impression of how it is to present a business idea to potential investors or later superiors.

Most of the participants did not even have the idea to start their own enterprise as they had worked towards a life as employees. But it is a good way to fight unemployment locally. "I believe that an entrepreneurial mindset is a good way to fight the unemployment that exists in most developing countries. There are many challenges that countries like Ghana have to face and with every graduate waiting to get one of the few jobs in institutions or companies, it is more unrealistic to solve them and also not helping the economy," says one of the participants. "If these graduates receive entrepreneurial training during their stays abroad, it would provide the impetus for great innovative ideas that could push their home countries forward. There is much to learn from the host countries and there is also the opportunity to build international networks."

All participants enjoyed the Summer School very much and liked the enthusiastic atmosphere during the practical phases where the teams worked hard on their ideas and discussed them. They also have learned a lot, from idea tools to business models, and developed a broad understanding of the financial and strategic challenges that young companies face. Thus the Impact Hub Ruhr team has achieved its goals for the workshop. The students go home with first experiences for business model development and now have the opportunity to start their own business in their home country.

 

 

 

 

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