Enterpreneurial Practitioner Learning



Dr David Higgins, University of Liverpool

Prof Olivier Toutain, ESC Dijon

Kindly supported by the University of Liverpool Management School


The track advances both practical and theoretical knowledge, reflecting on the interface between practice and theory, drawing focus towards the social dimensions of learning, critical experiences, and enacted practice. The track provides academics, practitioner and researchers alike with the opportunity to explore key issues surrounding the development and support of learning and development which can help to move forward education / training policy debates and offer lessons for the scholar / practitioner community.

The track seeks to invite papers (scholarly and practitioner oriented – working, conceptual, empirical & methodological) which discuss topics relating to all aspects of entrepreneurial/SME learning, training and development. Entrepreneurial/SME learning as a subject area concerns both the manner in which entrepreneurs & owner/managers learn and the methods used to educate and develop their knowledge and experience. Understanding how and what entrepreneurs learn are pertinent issues in how we begin to make sense not only of what entrepreneurs do but the specific processes of learning that occur in this context. This focus on learning brings with it questions surrounding the nature of learning, how learning is conceptualised and debated in relation to issues which influence how, when and why learning takes place.

The track strives to explore the experience of entrepreneurial/SME learning in different contexts. For example, topics include, but are not limited to:
• Coaching and Mentoring – (Entrepreneurial/SME education and training)
• Entrepreneurial / Owner/Manager – Sense Making
• Entrepreneurial networking and networks – learning and entrepreneurial clusters or communities
• Enhancing and stimulating learning experiences
• Reflection, critical thinking and reflexivity as a means of exploring entrepreneurial learning
• Entrepreneurial or SME unlearn
• Learning though/from experience (successes and failures)
• Entrepreneurial decision-making process
• Learning through Research Methodologies
• Developing entrepreneurial skills, dynamic capability and absorptive capacity
• Context and internal / external environments
• Action / Critical Action Learning approaches to training and education
• Policy and Practice
• Innovation and creativity in entrepreneurial process
• Intrapreneurship in private & public sector;
• Entrepreneurship education & entrepreneurial learning;
• The nature of entrepreneurship: cognition, behaviours and processes;
• Researching entrepreneurship: methods and methodologies

The track seeks to inspire participants to think critically and reflexively about entrepreneurial learning as a means of aiding and developing collective awareness of what is informative to the advancement of the field. This track seeks high-quality papers, both conceptual and empirically-based (regional, national or international context), that will contribute significantly to our knowledge and understanding of entrepreneurial/SME business practice and its potential to have a significant impact on future economic development.