Developing new opportunities, entrepreneurial skills and product/service creativity: a ‘Young Enterprise’ (YE) perspective

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


  • Colm Fearon
  • Marco Furlotti
  • Wim van-Vurren
  • Heather McLaughlin

Colleges, School and Institutes


The purpose of this research is to investigate how Young Enterprise (YE) student entrepreneurs develop new product/service opportunities, learn decision-making skills and achieve a sense of entrepreneurial self-efficacy. From a national survey of YE participants in the Netherlands, entrepreneurial self-efficacy was found to partially mediate relationships between new opportunity recognition belief and two key product/service creativity characteristics, namely: (a) new product/service novelty and; (b) new product/service meaningfulness. The ability of YE entrepreneurs to re-scale their new venture strategies, and/or re-adapt products and services were also important real options (or strategic decision-making) moderators in a new social cognitive learning framework. This article contributes to a fresh understanding of the opportunity recognition belief and entrepreneurial decision skills literatures from a social cognitive theoretical perspective. This research also provides much needed empirical support for European YE policy-makers, demonstrating that team-based mini-enterprise education initiatives really do benefit entrepreneurial learners!


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalStudies in Higher Education
Publication statusPublished - 7 Oct 2019


  • Young Enterprise (YE), opportunity recognition belief, entrepreneurial self- efficacy, social cognitive theory, real options