Saturday, November 12, 2011

My research to focus on Student Entrepreneurs

I have decided to narrow my studies to focus on student entrepreneurs and their information needs. This focus emerged from the challenge of studying small businesses, as there are many varieties and flavours of the term. There are competing definitions of small business, as well as the fact that current entrepreneurship recognises that there are various sub categories within small businesses that have special or unique needs and problems. There are Women owned businesses, Mompreneurs and Family businesses to name a few.

The literature of information seeking studies tend to focus on large firms, corporate executives and on managers. My study on the other hand want to zoom in on university or college students and their needs for information. I assume that  university students need information for undertaking entrepreneurship that may be different from other entrepreneurs.

I feel that students are different because they:
  1. usually work and study
  2. might be on student loan and may be more timid to take a risk to venture into entrepreneurship if they are not sure how they can pay back their student loan
  3. are expected by society's traditional norms to get jobs
  4. usually have less work/working experience to capitalise on, and 
  5. may not have the connections to social capital or other networks needed to establish business
I am going to also focus on how academic libraries can provide information services to help these students meet their information needs.

The first step however in my research proposal for my doctoral dissertation is to first find out what government information services exist online for these student entrepreneurs and potential student entrepreneurs. Does the government provide online information accessible to these students to assist them to launch their businesses and start-ups?

Student entrepreneurship is not new. Many high-tech companies such as Microsoft, Facebook, Yahoo, Google were all start-ups launched by university students.

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