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The EntreComp framework
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The EntreComp framework

EntreComp was created by the European Commission as a tool to develop entrepreneurial competences at every level, watch this video to find out more.
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Europe needs to drive change. In a rapidly changing world, we need ideas, opportunities, and action to create value for all. Europe needs people with an entrepreneurial mindset in every part of society. But what is an entrepreneurial mindset? How do we define entrepreneurship as a competence? To answer these questions, the European Commission worked with stakeholders and experts across Europe to create EntreComp, European Entrepreneurship Competence Framework. EntreComp is a reference framework for people interested in learning, teaching, and fostering the knowledge, skills, and attitudes that make up an entrepreneurial mindset. EntreComp is a free, open, and flexible tool that can be adapted to your needs. EntreComp offers the building blocks you need to support entrepreneurial thinking and action.
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EntreComp defines entrepreneurship as the capacity to act upon opportunities and ideas and transform them into value for others. The value that is created can be financial, cultural, or social. EntreComp establishes three areas
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of competence: ideas and opportunities, resources, and into action. Within these areas, EntreComp includes 15 competencies that combine to make an entrepreneurial mindset. These competencies can be mapped from the most basic to advanced levels, making the framework relevant to all abilities. Use EntreComp to identify goals and then act to reach them. EntreComp supports entrepreneurial thinking
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in any setting: at work, on the sports field, in volunteer and community groups, and in the classroom. EntreComp can be used to assess individual skills, to design learning opportunities, to support workforce development, to design career pathways, to support startups, and to guide policy development. EntreComp is helping people to develop skills for life, nurturing tomorrow’s leaders and building a society of entrepreneurial Europeans. If you want to develop lifelong entrepreneurial skills or help others to develop theirs, visit the EU Commission website to find out more.

It is encouraging to know that we are not alone in trying to develop entrepreneurial mindsets. Indeed, the development of entrepreneurial competences has been a confirmed priority at European level for many years, as highlighted in the above video, produced by the European Commission to introduce the EntreComp framework.

As far back as 2006, the European Commission confirmed initiative and entrepreneurship as one of eight key competences necessary for a knowledge-based society [1], highlighting the knowledge, skills and attitudes that would be essential for all European citizens. Some ten years later, in 2016, the European Entrepreneurship Competence Framework (EntreComp) was delivered to explain exactly what is meant by an entrepreneurial mindset and to provide a shared definition of entrepreneurship as a competence.

EntreComp is now an established and well-known feature of the entrepreneurship education landscape and is used by stakeholders in education and beyond to develop entrepreneurial capacity among citizens and young people.

Since its launch in 2016, EntreComp has been used in both policy and practice to support active citizenship, innovation, employability and learning through entrepreneurial thinking and action. In the guide EntreComp into Action [2], reference is made as to how EntreComp might be applied by different professionals and practitioners as a means of:

  • mobilising interest in entrepreneurship and inspiring action
  • creating value by adapting the framework to specific contexts
  • appraising and assessing levels of entrepreneurship competence
  • implementing entrepreneurial ideas and projects
  • recognising entrepreneurship skills.

EntreComp is especially useful for teachers looking to develop entrepreneurial competences among their students and can be tailored and targeted to support different skills levels, learning needs and development goals.

EntreComp provides a comprehensive description of the knowledge, skills and attitudes that are needed to be entrepreneurial and to create financial, cultural or social value for others. Acting as a common reference framework, EntreComp identifies 15 competences which describe what it means to be entrepreneurial and which together represent the entrepreneurial mindset. These competences are equally divided across three distinct areas, namely:

  1. Ideas and opportunities
  2. Resources
  3. Into action.

Each of the 15 entrepreneurship competences is then mapped across eight levels of progression from beginner to expert: discover, explore, experiment, dare, improve, reinforce, expand and transform. However, that does not mean that there is a linear sequence of steps that must be followed to become entrepreneurial. Instead, EntreComp promotes a concept in which the boundaries of entrepreneurial competence are continuously pushed forward to achieve greater and greater impact.

Building on the successes of EntreComp, Erasmus+ financing was provided in 2018 to support the development of an Entrepreneurial Education Professional Competence Framework for Teachers and Trainers (EntreCompEdu). Recognising the importance of continuing professional development, EntreCompEdu lists 17 specific competences for those delivering entrepreneurship education which extend across five competence areas:

  1. Professional knowledge and understanding
  2. Planning and organising entrepreneurial learning environments
  3. Teaching and training
  4. Assessment
  5. Professional learning (including impact evaluation).

Complementing this, a series of EntreComp Teacher Cards was also developed to build greater understanding of the 15 EntreComp competences among educators.

References

1. European Commission. Recommendation of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 December 2006 on Key Competences for Lifelong Learning. 2006. Available at: eur-lex.europa.eu.
2. European Commission. EntreComp into Action. Get Inspired. Make It Happen. [PDF]. 2018. Available at: publications.jrc.ec.europa.eu.

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