CEU Business School and European Commission Host Event to Encourage Young Entrepreneurship
The economic woes that have pervaded much of Europe since the start of the financial crisis in 2008 are particularly harsh for people between the ages of 18 and 25. The youth unemployment rate in the European Union has climbed 50% since 2008, and is rising faster than overall jobless rates, according to reporting by The Guardian.
György Bögel, a management professor at Central European University Business School, described youth jobless figures as "shocking” at a roundtable CEU Business School’s Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation and the European Commission Representation in Hungary organized on March 19.
Entrepreneurship, Professor Bögel said, is “the only way” for many young people to get a job today.
Professor Bögel, who along with panelists from the private and public sectors was selected for his expert insights on entreprenership, described the two types of young entrepreneurs he sees the most. One is the recent university graduate who lacks the practical experience a more seasoned entrepreneur has acquired. The other is the one “burned out” by a corporate position, seeking the independence of running his or her own company.
An initiative that supports such first-time entrepreneurs was the subject of a workshop held prior to the roundtable. The Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs, or EYE, program pairs new and aspiring entrepreneurs with experienced entrepreneurs running small and medium sized businesses in European Union countries. The new entrepreneurs work with host companies for a period of one to six months. The program is designed to be mutually beneficial: new entrepreneurs gain first-hand knowledge; hosts are exposed to fresh perspectives on their businesses.
Because it connects new entrepreneurs to hosts in other countries, the EYE program helps with an aspect that can make or break new and established ventures: networking.
Roundtable panelist Sándor Döry, a start-up founder and graduate of CEU Business School’s MBA program, told the audience how networking across Europe has been vital to his company’s success. It enables a diversified client base that eases fluctuations in the economy that have become all too familiar to start-ups in recent years. When the economy in one region is doing poorly, cashflow is offset by clients in healthier economic regions.
Joining Professor Bögel and Döry on the panel were Michaela Hauf, programme manager of the European Commission Directorate-General for Enterprise and Industry; Márk Gárdonyi, head of the biotech division of the Hungarian Intellectual Property Office; and Sára Holly, regional manager at the Hungarian Investment and Trade Agency Enterprise Europe Network. István Perger, head of sector of the European Commission Representation in Hungary, moderated the roundtable discussion.
About the Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation
CEU Business School’s Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation is devoted to the study and practice of contemporary business, which is increasingly characterized by innovative management approaches and entrepreneurial practices. It is particularly focused on economic activities that occur across nations, involve emerging markets, and are conscious of their impact on society and the environment. The Institute aims to be a regional hub for exchanging ideas about innovation and entrepreneurship and to create economic opportunity in Hungary and Central and Eastern Europe.
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