IESA's Center for Entrepreneurship
Since its foundation in 2003, the mission of this center has been to train individuals capable of transforming ideas into sustainable, innovative and socially responsible companies that generate progress and wellbeing for society. To reach this objective, this center is based on three pillars: scientific research, teaching and rendering services to entrepreneurs.
The Center for Entrepreneurship has erected international relations which have enabled it to remain at the cutting edge in research and teaching. Among our research activities are those carried out jointly with two important international networks:
- GEM Consortium
- STEP Program
GEM (Global Entrepreneurship Monitor) is a longitudinal study which collects a statistically representative sample of the Venezuelan population and monitors enterprising activity in the nation, in order to offer public policy recommendations. In 2009, IESA promoted the undertaking of the GEM study in other regions, specifically Panama, a country which recently started its first measurement. The STEP research network, conducted by Babson College, is focused on understanding the entrepreneurial phenomenon in family-run businesses and each year drafts two national case papers on local enterprises.
Regarding teaching activities, by means of an alliance erected since 2007 with Babson College, the CE has managed to update its professors and teachers from others institutions in the nation on issues related to enterprising. This alliance also permits IESA students to obtain international training from Babson professors through the Babson Short Program.
Since May 2010, IESA's CE has become the promoter and catalyst of the “National Enterprising Ecosystem”. This ecosystem is the articulation of a network that unites all institutions possessing a relevant role in the support to entrepreneurs in Venezuela. To date, 80 institutions from diverse scopes (universities, consultants, banks, private companies, risk capitalists, incubators, multinationals and corporate chambers) have worked with IESA in articulating and creating synergy. As a sample of the joint action, in November of this year we launched the Global Enterprising Week, thus increasing the amount of events backing entrepreneurship in the country with respect to last year.
Each year, the IESA's CE, in alliance with Fundación IDEAS, is part of the academic branch of the nation's most important business plans contest: the IDEAS Contest. The purpose of this contest is to promote the use of business plans as a useful planning tool that increases the chances of success. Since 2003, more than 6,000 teams of entrepreneurs have participated, competing in the categories of social enterprising and business.
Organización Cisneros: this alliance enables the CE to train enterprising women through a program created in 2010. This program seeks to train and enhance the personal, family and economic wellbeing of women in impoverished sectors, offering them personal, managerial and functional tools that enable them to develop skills, reinforce ideas and acquire knowledge for the creation and consolidation of their own businesses. According to Organización Cisneros, this is an enriching and innovative experience, not only for the fact that it highlights the protagonic role of Venezuelan women in our society and contributes to them being an agent of change in their communities but also for the creation of a platform that multiplies initiatives, which has become a "new learning model".