In the last two decades, business and entrepreneurship education has seen remarkable growth, emphasizing the need to nurture innovation.
Higher education institutions can and should play a transformative role in this rapidly changing global landscape. They must reassess their curricula and embrace a broader framework beyond traditional education models. This new approach could and should encompass a comprehensive ecosystem of education, mentoring, coaching, technology transfer, research and development, creation of launchpads, incubators, accelerators, or other alternative innovation ecosystems. By doing so, we can nurture the next generation of entrepreneurs and investors.
A dynamic shift is reshaping the global entrepreneurship landscape in the wake of unprecedented economic disruptions in recent times. These tumultuous periods are fertile grounds for the birth and growth of new enterprises. A notable trend is the emergence of young entrepreneurs choosing to sidestep the conventional labor market to focus on creating their own ventures. Even those already engaged in traditional employment embrace disruptive innovation and are forging into new arenas.
As we look toward 2024, the entrepreneurship landscape is poised for a remarkable transformation. A novel breed of entrepreneurship is taking center stage, characterized by its diversity, social consciousness, and willingness to engage in multiple ventures concurrently. Innovation ecosystems are now recognized as catalysts for economic, financial, and social progress, offering benefits extending to all societal segments.
A recent article by EY also underscores the pivotal role of venture capital (VC) funding in the entrepreneurial ecosystem, particularly in addressing wealth disparities. Venture Capital (VC) funding is essential for businesses with strong growth potential that may take longer to be profitable but can become category leaders. It accelerates the scaling of great entrepreneurial ventures, contributing significantly to the economy. The author emphasizes that VC-backed companies can positively impact underserved communities, promoting financial literacy and providing essential services. The article also forecasts the role banks and non-FinTechs can play, acquiring or partnering with FinTechs to offer innovative solutions to a broader audience.
To guide business leaders in cultivating thriving innovation ecosystems, a comprehensive six-step playbook has emerged, published by McKinsey. This playbook provides a strategic framework to ensure that these ecosystems are designed to maximize their potential impact. As the entrepreneurial paradigm continues to evolve, this innovative approach promises to pave the way for a more inclusive, adaptable, and prosperous future.
The highly volatile and markedly competitive global entrepreneurship ecosystem demands novel approaches to innovation and building sustainable tech-enabled ecosystems, as outlined in insightful reports by WEF and World Bank.
During the recent WBAF 2023 Global Business Angels Investor Summit, I had the opportunity to introduce a new concept: "The Global Entrepreneurship Hexagon Model™" during my closing keynote.
The new model builds upon the original Triple Helix Innovation Model, conceived by Henry Etzkowitz and Loet Leydesdorff, which has been instrumental in driving innovation and economic growth by fostering collaboration among academia, industry, and government. However, in the current novel global geo-political, social, and economic landscape, we must seek to expand, augment and amplify our approach.
Within this new hexagon framework, we will integrate and harmonize three new domains with the existing ones. Therefore, the new hexagon model will encompass Academia, Industry, and Government, Deep-Tech Diplomacy Ecosystem, ESG ( Environmental, Social, and Governance), and DEI (Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion) as essential pillars of a recalibrated global innovation ecosystem.
The Entrepreneurship Hexagon Model builds upon the existing triple helix, representing a natural progression by integrating these additional critical concepts.
In the current hyper-connected world, where technology transcends borders, leveraging deep tech diplomacy as a catalyst for global collaboration and maintaining digital trust is crucial. By fostering new partnerships and establishing diplomatic channels, we can unlock the potential of deep-tech solutions to address global challenges responsibly.
Furthermore, the UN 2030 and 2050 Agendas blueprint a prosperous and inclusive future. We must place the SDGs and the transition to a Net-Zero Economy at the core of our innovation efforts. By aligning our entrepreneurial endeavors with the UN indicators, we can harness the power of innovation to accelerate solutions to pressing global issues. The Entrepreneurship Hexagon model could provide an improved integrated framework that embeds sustainability into our innovation ecosystems, driving purposeful and impactful entrepreneurship.
Lastly, we must recognize the indispensable value of diversity, equity, and inclusion in driving innovation and the rise of a creator economy. Inclusivity within the innovation landscape is not only a moral imperative but also enhances creativity, resilience, and the ability to address diverse societal needs. The Entrepreneurship Hexagon would embed DEI principles into the fabric of the global innovation ecosystem, fostering an environment that welcomes diverse perspectives, supports underrepresented groups, and promotes equal opportunities for all.
By embracing this novel framework, we could build a future that harnesses the full potential of science and technology, fosters sustainability, and ensures equitable access to the benefits of innovation.
In this interconnected world, the power to effect change rests in our collective hands. Each of us has a role to play in shaping our shared future. Governments must create enabling policies and regulatory frameworks that encourage collaboration and provide the necessary support for entrepreneurship. Academia must nurture interdisciplinary collaboration and equip students with the skills and mindset needed to thrive in the innovation economy. Industry must engage in purpose-driven innovation, recognizing the value of sustainability and inclusive practices. And as tech diplomacy advocates, we can facilitate international cooperation and forge partnerships that transcend borders and propel us forward.
The new Global Entrepreneurship Hexagon Model™ has the potential to challenge the status quo and to forge a path of entrepreneurship that fully leverages all stakeholders, leading to a sustainable, inclusive, and prosperous future.
Ingrid Vasiliu-Feltes, MD MBA Is a healthcare executive, futurist and globalist who is highly dedicated to digital and ethics advocacy. She is a Forbes Business Council member, digital strategist, passionate educator and entrepreneurship ecosystem builder, known as an expert speaker, board advisor and consultant. Throughout her career she has received several awards for excellence in research, teaching or leadership. She is the recipient of numerous awards most notably: WBAF World Excellence AwardSocial Entrepreneurship 2021, Top 20 Global Leaders in Digital Twins Technologies, Top 50 Global Leaders in Health Tech,Top 50 Global Ecosystem Leaders, Top 100 Visionary In Education Award 2021, Top 100 Global Women in Leadership Award 2021, Top 100 World Women Vision Award, 2021-Innovation & Tech, Top 100 Women in Social Enterprise 2021 (nominee),Top 50 Global Thinkers (Nominee),Nations of Women Change Makers Award(finalist),Top 100 Healthcare Leader 2020 Award, Top 100 Finance Leader 2020 Award, and Top 100 Women in Crypto 2020. Additionally, she serves as an Expert Advisor to the EU Blockchain Observatory Forum, and was appointed to the Board of UN Legal and Economic Empowerment Network. Dr. Vasiliu-Feltes is CEO of Softhread Inc., the Founder and CEO of The Science, Entrepreneurship and Investments Institute, and currently serving as a Country Director for WBAF USA, Senator of WBAF, Faculty Member of the WBAF Business School-Division of Entrepreneurship, and teaching the Executive MBA Business Technology Course at the UM Business School. She is also acting as the Chief Innovation Officer for the Government Blockchain Association. Most recently she served as President of Detect Genomix, Chief Quality and Safety Officer Chief and Innovation Officer for Mednax, Chief Quality and Safety Officer and Chief of Compliance for the University of Miami UHealth System During her academic tenure she taught several courses within the Medical School, as well as the combined MD/PhD and MD/MPH programs. Throughout her career, Dr. Vasiliu-Feltes held several leadership positions and is a member of numerous prestigious professional organizations. She holds several certifications, such as Bioethics from Harvard, Artificial Intelligence and Business Strategy from MIT Sloan, Blockchain Technology and Business Innovation from MIT Sloan, Finance from Harvard Business School, Negotiation from Harvard Law School, Innovation and Entrepreneurship from Stanford Graduate School of Business, Certified Professional in Healthcare Risk Management, Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives, Patient Safety Officer by the International Board Federation of Safety Managers, Master Black Belt in Lean and Six Sigma Management, Professional in Healthcare Quality by the National Association of Healthcare Quality, Manager for Quality and Organizational Excellence, by the American Society for Quality, and Certified Risk Management Professional by the American Society for Healthcare Risk Management. Additionally, Dr. Vasiliu-Feltes is an Honorary Advisory Board Member of several companies, as well as an Editorial Board Member for several international publications, an author and TV/Media partner.