UWTSD's Professor Andy Penaluna to address Royal Academies


UWTSD’s Professor Andy Penaluna has been invited to address a joint workshop hosted by the Royal Academy of Engineering, the Royal Society, the British Academy and the Academy of Medical Sciences on Friday, June 16.

Professor Penaluna will attend the event at Prince Philip House in London, together with a number of prominent speakers helping to shape the future of entrepreneurship education, including Professor Fiona Murray CBE, Associate Dean for Innovation at MIT and Co-Director of the MIT Innovation Initiative.

The workshop will bring together Fellows of each Academy with key stakeholders in entrepreneurship education in order to formulate a response to the Council for Science and Technology (CST’s) recommendation.

Professor Penaluna, Director of the International Institute for Creative Entrepreneurial Development at UWTSD, will represent the University as the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA’s) expert in enterprise and entrepreneurship education.

Professor Penaluna said: "In October 2017, the Council for Science and Technology approached Prime Minister Teresa May with a suggestion that entrepreneurship education needs to be more formalized, especially in STEM subjects within Universities. In her reply she specifically made mention of the UK Quality Assurance Agency’s work in this area, something that started life as an idea at UWTSD and that has subsequently received significant international recognition.

"All too often people just jump to business skills when they think about entrepreneurship, but as we now know creative skills are equally important because without great ideas, you have nothing to commercialise. We see the bigger picture, and that is why the body responsible for quality in Higher Education has selected us to respond to the request for new developments.”

The significant role UWTSD’s Professor Andy Penaluna has played in helping to produce guidance aimed at enhancing employability through enterprise education, has already been praised by the CEO of the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA).

Professor Penaluna helped to develop the QAA’s 2012 guidance for education providers on enterprise and entrepreneurship education and has been promoting its relevance since. The QAA is an independent body entrusted with monitoring and advising on standards and quality in UK higher education.

Writing in a blog post on Linked In, QAA CEO Douglas Blackstock said Professor Penaluna’s role had been ‘crucial’ in helping to deliver its aims. Mr Blackstock also highlighted a response by Prime Minister Theresa May to the Council for Science and Technology, which had suggested ways of ‘strengthening entrepreneurship education to boost growth, jobs and productivity,’ in which the Prime Minister referred to the 2012 QAA guidance, which she said would be ‘useful to measure the impact of this work’ and ‘could ‘build, introducing a greater focus on STEM subjects.”

Professor Penaluna said: "By the late 2000s it was becoming obvious that education was going to have to change. The way that we evaluated student performance through essays and tests left no room for creativity and enterprise, yet without innovation skills our learners would find employment difficult, and we believed, our economy would suffer.

 "Working initially with the UK Higher Education Academy our University led the way for new approaches and new ideas, and these were taken up at the highest of levels by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education. Subsequently, and based prominently on this work, the European Commission followed suit.

 "Five years later we can celebrate and reflect, but also take the time to review. What has worked best and what can be improved upon? The entire UK University and small business community is reliant on us having impact, and this is why the Prime Minister has called for action.

 "The way that students value their University education is also changing, and at UWTSD we know that old approaches do not always result in the right new ideas. We are in the midst of change, but are leading international responses."

Professor Penaluna said the impact of the QAA Enterprise and Entrepreneurship Guidance was far-reaching. "The United Nations, European Commission and the OECD are amongst those who have consulted QAA’s work in depth, and countries as far away as Thailand have based their Further Education provision on it. Even the Chinese Ministry of Education consider QAA’s enterprise and entrepreneurship guidance to have come from the most experienced experts in the field. QAA isn’t waiting for the future, it is actively designing it."




Note to Editor

Rebecca Davies

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