Press Release - 13 February 2024
GEM 2023/2024 Global Report Underscores the Need to Improve
Entrepreneurial Education Worldwide
Casablanca, Morocco - Entrepreneurial education in most economies continues to be assessed as poor by national entrepreneurship experts, according to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) 2023/2024 Global Report, titled 25 Years and Growing.
It’s been 25 years since GEM began assessing the state of the art of entrepreneurship in the world. Over that time, entrepreneurship has taken its place on the global stage as a key component of the health of economies worldwide. However, some indicators like entrepreneurial education, have not changed much over time, thus requiring further action from policymakers and other stakeholders.
As part of the GEM National Expert Survey, entrepreneurship experts in each participating economy were asked to provide a score across 13 GEM Entrepreneurial Framework Conditions (EFCs) that, depending on the attention policymakers give to each, can enhance or hinder new business creation:
A1. Entrepreneurial Finance
A2. Ease of Access to Entrepreneurial Finance
B1. Government Policy — Support and Relevance
B2. Government Policy — Taxes and Bureaucracy
C. Government Entrepreneurial Programs
D1. Entrepreneurial Education at School
D2. Entrepreneurial Education Post-School
E. Research and Development Transfers
F. Commercial and Professional infrastructure
G1. Ease of Entry — Market Dynamics
G2. Ease of Entry — Burdens and Regulations
H. Physical Infrastructure
I. Social and Cultural Norms
The entrepreneurial education scores were rated as the weakest framework condition in 31 out of 49 economies. Entrepreneurial education at school was assessed by national experts as satisfactory or better in just five out of 49 economies.
The GEM global authorship team – consisting of 10 academics located around the world – noted the following in the report: “Many new businesses may never come to fruition because a generation of schoolchildren grew up unaware that starting a business was a possibility.”
However, change is possible. Between 2021 and 2023, both Qatar and the United Arab Emirates showed substantially improved ratings for entrepreneurial education at school. India had the most improved ratings over the same period, from “less than satisfactory” to “much better than satisfactory.”
Based on GEM observations over 25 years, some ways to improve entrepreneurial education at school are to ensure the curriculum includes soft skills (creative thinking, problem solving, opportunity recognition and how to assess risks, etc.); invite entrepreneurs into schools to talk about their experience; and introduce small business projects where pupils collaborate to compete around an entrepreneurial project. At the college/university level, possibilities include introducing courses on how to start and run a business; encouraging students to start micro-enterprises; inviting the local business community to mentor individual students with project ideas; and creating space where students can collaborate on business ideas (innovation hubs).
The GEM Global Report findings are based on responses from over 136,000 individuals across 46 economies who replied to Adult Population Survey questions about their attitudes, perceptions and activities related to entrepreneurship. An additional 2,000 experts from 49 economies offered their assessments for the National Expert Survey.
UAE again number one in the National Entrepreneurship Context Index
Based on its National Expert Survey results, GEM’s National Entrepreneurship Context Index (NECI) represents the quality of a particular economy’s entrepreneurial environment. It is based on the average of the 13 EFCs.
For the third consecutive year, the United Arab Emirates tops the NECI with a 7.7 score, the highest ever recorded. The United Arab Emirates scored highest across the entire sample of 49 economies in all but one of the EFCs (slightly behind Saudi Arabia for Ease of Entry: Burdens and Regulations).
In 2023, 11 of 13 EFCs scores improved in the UAE, with one decrease and one unchanged. The highest increases were for Research and Development Transfers and for Commercial and Professional Infrastructure, each improving its score from 6.8 to 7.8. The only condition with a score that fell was that of Physical Infrastructure.
According to the UAE Policy Roadmap in the Global Report: “As recently as 2019, the United Arab Emirates had scored 5.8 and ranked fifth. This demonstrates astonishing progress, and a shining example of how political determination and sufficient resources can transform an entrepreneurial environment.”
Rounding out the top five in the NECI were India, Saudi Arabia, Lithuania and Qatar. It is worth noting for policymakers that not one North American or European economy are amongst this illustrious group.
Women entrepreneurs deserve more support
Experts in 37 out of 48 economies rated the social support for women as unsatisfactory. However, in a majority of economies (28 out of 48), women entrepreneurs’ access to resources, as compared to that of men, rated as satisfactory or better. Experts in only six economies assessed the social support for women entrepreneurs and their resource access compared to men as satisfactory or better.
Would-be entrepreneurs fear of failure still remains a formidable obstacle to the creation of new startups, especially for women. At least two in five adults seeing good opportunities would not start a business for fear it might fail in 35 of 45 participating economies. In 37 of these economies, a higher proportion of women than men that see good opportunities would not start a business for fear it might fail.
GEM Silver Anniversary
Global Entrepreneurship Monitor is celebrating its 25th anniversary. GEM began as a joint project between Babson College (USA) and London Business School (UK). The first GEM Global Report was published in 1999. Over the years, the annual report has influenced various stakeholders, including policymakers, academics, entrepreneurs and international organizations. This impact is attributed to the dedicated efforts of the consortium’s National Teams that actively seek expertise and financial resources to collect national-level data. The culmination of these endeavors is reflected in GEM Global Reports, which provide a comprehensive "State of the Art" overview of global entrepreneurship.
GEM Executive Director Aileen Ionescu-Somers noted: “GEM provides living proof that long-term research can flourish through international cooperation. Even though funded primarily (but not only) by national governments, GEM has been able to fulfill the essential role of independent and objective messenger to decision-makers for what the meticulously collected data reveals, entirely free of political mandates.”
"We believe in the power of entrepreneurship to transform lives, communities and the world,” added Professor José Ernesto Amorós, GEM/GERA Board Chair. “We're excited to continue the journey.”
The GEM 2023/2024 Global Report is a result of the collective efforts of GEM National Teams. The authorship team consists of:
- Professor Stephen Hill, DSc (Lead Author)
- Aileen Ionescu-Somers, PhD
- Professor Alicia Coduras, PhD
- Professor Maribel Guerrero, PhD, Arizona State University, USA, and Universidad del Desarrollo, Chile
- Professor Emeritus Ehud Menipaz, P.Eng, Ben Gurion University
- Professor Fatima Boutaleb, PhD, Hassan II University of Casablanca
- Professor Przemysław Zbierowski, PhD, University of Economics in Katowice
- Professor Thomas Schøtt, PhD, University of Agder, Norway
- Professor Sreevas Sahasranamam, PhD, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow
- Professor Jeffrey Shay, PhD, Babson College
The Global Report launch is taking place today at the Hassan II University of Casablanca, Morocco. The report is sponsored by the Cartier Women’s Initiative; the School of Management Fribourg (HEG-FR) in Switzerland; the Ministry of Economic Inclusion, Small Business, Employment and Skills in Morocco; the Ministry of Higher Education, Scientific Research and Innovation in Morocco; and Hassan II University of Casablanca in Morocco.
Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) is a consortium of national country teams, primarily associated with top academic institutions, that carries out survey-based research on entrepreneurship around the world. GEM is the only global research source that collects data on entrepreneurship directly from individual entrepreneurs! GEM’s Adult Population Survey (APS) provides analysis on the characteristics, motivations and ambitions of individuals starting businesses, as well as social attitudes towards entrepreneurship. The National Expert Survey (NES) looks at the national context in which individuals start businesses.
In numbers, GEM is:
- 24 years of data
- 150,000+ interviews a year
- 120+ economies
- 370+ specialists in entrepreneurship research
- 150+ academic and research institutions
- 150+ funding institutions
GEM began in 1999 as a joint project between Babson College (USA) and London Business School (UK). The consortium has become the richest resource of information on entrepreneurship, publishing a range of global, national and 'special topic' reports on an annual basis. More information is at www.gemconsortium.org.
Kevin Anselmo, Global Entrepreneurship Monitor
Tel: +1 919 260 0035 / email@example.com