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Skills associated with employment positions in SMEs and favourable attitudes toward self-employment: Longitudinal evidence from students who participated in the shell technology enterprise programme

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Abstract:

Successive British governments have encouraged young people to accumulate skills and attributes that would enable them to obtain jobs in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) as well as develop careers in enterprise. This article evaluates the contribution of the 1994 Shell Technology Enterprise Programme (STEP) that subsidised the placement of students in SMEs. In 1997, responses were gathered from STEP students as well as a control group of non-STEP students. The human capital profiles of students reporting full-time employment positions in smaller private firms as well as those reporting a favourable attitude towards self-employment or business ownership were ascertained. Participation in the programme was not found to be significantly associated with the selected outcomes. Skills and attributes honed by the programme were, however, significantly associated with the selected outcomes. Policy-makers need to appreciate that the skills and attributes reported by students associated with the propensity to obtain employment positions in smaller private firms are not the same as those associated with the propensity to report a favourable attitude towards self-employment or business ownership.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/09537320500520692

Affiliations: 1: CSME, University of Warwick Business School, University of Warwick, Coventry, UK 2: Business School, University of Central England, Birmingham, UK

Publication date: 2006-02-01

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