Choosing Collaborative Learning Options for Preparing Innovative Entrepreneurs
Keywords:innovative entrepreneurship, collaboration, knowledge co-creation, networking, online teamwork
This paper focuses on comparing and choosing online and face-to-face collaborative learning applications for preparing students to innovative entrepreneurship. The main research question is: What are the pluses and minuses of programs with different time frames and combinations of online and face-to-face teamwork for facilitating innovative entrepreneurship and international scaling readiness? Learning concepts based on collaborative learning and improving the international networking readiness of students are presented. Estonian-Finnish business in virtual networks course, online teamwork experience of students that have participated in X-Culture global teams, intensive one semester face-to-face business development projects in the Starter programme and one-week course European and Global Horizons for Start-up Entrepreneurship in the Post-COVID World at the KEDGE Business School are compared. We analyse the pros and cons of these educational practices and give recommendations on how to customise these practices to intended learning outcomes depending on the international mobility possibilities of students. The paper explains how to align collaborative learning options to the entrepreneurial orientations of students, their readiness to launch a new venture and to international scalability potential of their innovative ideas. Limitations of intensive learning by doing programmes for team-based venture development and different ways of international student team creation for collaborative project work are explained. The recent COVID-19 crisis has expanded the need to apply online learning and hybrid learning for collaborative projects. Implications of limited international mobility of students during the pandemic on scalable business idea development are highlighted. The importance of networking knowledge for international entrepreneurship and the role of team projects for other entrepreneurs before starting students' own innovative ventures is explained. Learning in higher education should not be locked to closed e-learning platforms. Online learning can support international entrepreneurial collaboration. The paper also discusses changing trends of collaborative learning to facilitate innovation and green entrepreneurship for regenerative futures in the new normality during the COVID-19 pandemic.