Entrepreneurship 101

From The Economist, lessons for the Pittsburgh business community:
“FORGET space aliens and race cars—here's a game that gives kids skills they can use for the rest of their lives.” So says the blurb for Hot Shot Business, an online game (www.hotshotbusiness.com) played each year by millions of “budding entrepreneurs” who get the chance to open their own pet spa, skateboard factory, landscape-gardening business or comic shop in Opportunity City. Players start marketing campaigns; change products, services and prices; and respond to demanding customers and big news events. And, “as a self-funded entrepreneur, you'll keep all the profits. But if anything goes wrong, well, you're on your own.”

The game was a product of a partnership between the “edutainment” arm of the Walt Disney Company and the charitable Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, headed since 2002 by Carl Schramm, now arguably America's leading evangelist of entrepreneurship. Hot Shot Business is one of many initiatives launched by Mr Schramm to educate Americans—and, increasingly, foreigners too—about how to be entrepreneurial. Disney and Kauffman have also developed a popular Opportunity City exhibit in Disney World in Florida. Kauffman has given grants to promote entrepreneurship in American universities; and not just in business schools but across the entire campus. “Entrepreneurs mostly don't come from business schools,” says Mr Schramm, who worries that with their new courses on corporate social responsibility, social entrepreneurship and the like, B-schools increasingly produce graduates uncomfortable with the cut-and-thrust of real capitalism.

Kauffman also funds research into entrepreneurship and its role in the economy, which Mr Schramm says is greatly underestimated. He argues that a rise in entrepreneurship over the past 25 years has rescued America's economy from the stagflationary nightmare of “bureaucratic capitalism”. “What we are engaged in is nothing less than a U-turn in economic history,” he claims. “And the name we give this U-turn is the invention of entrepreneurial capitalism.” Replacing the old “industrial triangle” of government, big business and the unions is a “new kind of entrepreneurial box”, in which start-ups increasingly take on the work of innovation from big business and the unions have been replaced by universities, he says.


0 Responses to "Entrepreneurship 101"

Search Pittsblog

About Pittsblog

Pittsblog 2.0 is written by Mike Madison, a law professor at the University of Pittsburgh. Send email to michael.j.madison[at]gmail.com. Mike also blogs at Madisonian.net, on law and technology. Chris Briem of Null Space drops by from time to time.

All opinions expressed at Pittsblog 2.0 are those of their respective authors and of no one (and no thing) else, least of all the University of Pittsburgh.

Pittsblog 2.0 has a motto: "It's steel good in Pittsburgh." Say it aloud, with a Pittsburgh accent.

Comments are moderated.
Subscribe to Pittsblog comments


Blog Archive

Header Background

Header background images licensed from (left image) lemonad and (right image) plaskota under Creative Commons Attribution - Noncommercial - Share Alike 2.0 Generic licenses.


Copyright 2003-2010 Michael J. Madison - WP Theme by Brian Gardner - Blogger Blog Templates, ThemeLib.com