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Journal: Problems of Education in the 21st Century (Vol.76, No. 1)

Publication Date:

Authors : ; ;

Page : 7-20

Keywords : active participation; intergenerational entrepreneurship education; NEETs; senior entrepreneurs; social inclusion;

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The current generation of young Italians leaving education have never entered the labour market with more years of schooling and higher levels of academic certifications as now. Nevertheless, they are losing out in the struggle for employment. It is a paradox experienced not only across Europe and poses questions about whether young people are being trained efficiently for twenty-first century employment. Nowadays employers require that young people possess skills-oriented learning that emphasises adaptability and preparedness for change. Italian Education systems, however, have not been responsive in this way. The intergenerational education approach may be an effective method for covering the mismatch between provided education and competences required on the labour market. Experienced older entrepreneurs may give young people Not in Employment, Education, or Training (NEETs) the confidence and intellectual resources to deal with the problems they will encounter through professional life, creating new spaces of autonomy and responsibility. Two focus-groups and questionnaires with 15 NEETs and 15 qualitative interviews and questionnaires to 50+ entrepreneurs were carried out in five European countries, Italy included, to understand how an entrepreneur could help youth to start their own business. Results from Italy demonstrate that to spread a culture of entrepreneurship, senior entrepreneurs are required to strengthen NEETs' confidence, initiative and courage, the ability to take risks and to invest in the future. Considering Lev Vygotsky's cognitive and social development theory as applied to intergenerational learning seniors need to act as a trigger to promote NEETs' entrepreneurial attitudes, capabilities and aspirations for life.

Last modified: 2018-06-29 23:29:57