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!
- Young enterprise (YE)
- entrepreneurial self-efficacy
- opportunity recognition belief
- real options
- social cognitive theory
ASJC Scopus subject areas