Monday, June 13, 2011

June AdVENTURES! Startup Weekend, Babson & ICSB

p.s. Don't forget to sign up for Idaho Startup Weekend 3, June 24-26 -- you WILL like. Think of it as our first real salvo as we gear up for Global Entrepreneurship Week ( You want Idaho to move forward? Just remember that "entrepreneur" is a VERB! Time for all of us to get busy.

I'm home for a day+ between a trip to the magical Babson Entrepreneurship Research Conference in NY and the huge International Council for Small Business meetings in Stockholm.

The Babson shindig is THE cutting edge of great research on entrepreneurs and entrepreneurship. I felt surrounded by rock stars... think "We are the World" without the weirdness. It is such an honor. My paper was essentially on the impact of entrepreneurship education/training, focusing on assessing the deeper, more constructivistic elements. You can see the slides at [also look at the prior blog post!] but the paper was NOT the story.

I was the 3rd of three presentations, starting with two of Babson College's own veterans who had surveyed >4000 alumni...

Would you be shocked to know that business plan training still sucks? ;)

But the real fun was that we were at the end of the day AND had a rock star audience. Of the top 20 minds in entrepreneurship education.. at least 10 of them were in the room. So, I shut up & let the rock stars, well, rock! Anyway, we kept discussing for another 30-40 minutes, spilled into the hall for another 10-15, then ended up for another 30+ in the bar.. and the discussion is not going to fade out. (And it validates that my teaching ideas & practice don't just work.. they *ought* to work, LOL. I think I need to write more on this.) These are the days you want to live forever!

Also, lots of timely discussion re the recent Big Win for university researchers AND the entrepreneurial community with the SCOTUS bitchslap in Stanford v. Roche. The proper reading of Bayh-Dole is very liberating. (There's a really blunt blog on tech transfer issues that has huge readership but little PR... But again, far-ranging discussion of how
entrepreneurial technology commercialization is the key, no, the only key to tech transfer. (And that most universities will hunker down & try to avoid listening to the Supremes, LOL)

I head out today to Stockholm - looking forward to reprising my role as the World's Great Magnet for Screaming Babies. :) The ICSB conference will likely be nuts -way too many people and way too many distractions. ("Oh, I am*required* to meet some people at the Ice Bar... and it's an open bar?" OK, maybe I can do that, LOL)

The doctoral consortium is Wednesday - you should be encouraged by the steady stream of young brainiacs entering the field - most of whom are recovering entrepreneurs and kickbutt teachers. There is ZERO excuse for any university to hire some to teach anything related to entrepreneurship, innovation who doesn't have sterling academic credentials, serious research
chops, equally serious teaching skills and direct entrepreneurial experience. (And even... social skills? Hmmmm, maybe the world IS going to be OK!)

I am 'junior' author on Thursday on two papers - the senior authors' ages add up to less than mine (gulp) but so glad to be helpful rather than taking the lead. The first is a young Swede who stumbled across a treasure trove of accurate, timely data on Sweden's innovation systems. It will drive forward our ability to quickly & skillfully assess entrepreneurial ecosystems. The
second was a study of South Asian immigrant entrepreneurs that offers powerful evidence to support the Startup Visa (and some alternative strategies should the Startup Visa continue to languish). [I also get to present another paper on how entrepreneurship education makes an impact with Europe's #1 mind on this topic, the brilliant Danish scholar, Helle Neergaard.]

Finally, I'm chairing a quasi-workshop on how to convert research findings (in combinstion with expert findings in the field) to inform public policy - what will work AND how to sell it. If even our own government seems willing to support entrepreneurs, imagine what other places might be willing to pursue! You can see the workshop overview also at slideshare. This too is a signal honor. Talk about bringing together rock stars... very exciting but very, very humbling.

I know I still owe you some reflections on my trips to Germany & Spain - I promise to get to them.

And did I mention Startup Weekend? Go to the main site, - read about Startup Weekend CAIRO, the joint Israeli-Palestinian events, Startup Weekend Mongolia (Mongolia? Whoa.) So sign up... don't make me hunt you down. ;)

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