The Largest Global Entrepreneurship Research Study Comes to Malaysia

In order to become the epicenter for entrepreneurship research took many initiatives. It all started when Universiti Tun Abdul Razak’s (UNIRAZAK) Bank Rakyat School of Business and Entrepreneurship (BRSOBE), in 2008, became involved in entrepreneurship research and studies. It began a more structured national research for entrepreneurship by becoming a member of the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) representing Malaysia. UNIRAZAK’s first nationwide research on entrepreneurship began in 2009.

The Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) research program is an annual assessment of the national level of entrepreneurial activity. Started as a partnership between London Business School and Babson College, it was initiated in 1999 with 10 countries, and today GEM 2012 has since conducted research in 96 countries.

This research program, based on a harmonized assessment of the level of national entrepreneurial activity for all participating countries, involves exploration of the role of entrepreneurship in national economic growth. Today GEM is the largest survey-based study of entrepreneurship in the world.

GEM Research has three main objectives:

  • To measure differences in the level of early stage entrepreneurial activity between countries
  • To uncover factors determining the levels of entrepreneurial activity
  • To identify policies that may enhance the level of entrepreneurial activity

Every year each national team is responsible for conducting a survey of at least 2000 people within its adult population. The Adult Population Survey (APS) is a survey of attitudes towards entrepreneurship in the general population but it also asks people whether or not they are engaged in startup activity or own or run a business.

The individual national team surveys are all collected in exactly the same way and at exactly the same time of year to ensure the quality of the data. The individual national team surveys are harmonized into one master dataset that allows users to investigate entrepreneurial activity at various stages of the entrepreneurial process, as well as to study a variety of factors characterizing both entrepreneurs and their businesses in each participating nation and across countries.

Overall, GEM’s unique ability to provide information on the entrepreneurial landscape of countries in a global context makes its data a necessary resource for any serious attempt to study and track entrepreneurial behavior worldwide. (see box below).

In 2010 UNIRAZAK was appointed to the Global Entrepreneurship Research Association (GERA) as a board member. It became a unique opportunity to differentiate UNIRAZAK as a leader in global entrepreneurship research and to strengthen its position as a forerunner in regional entrepreneurship leadership.  This partnership combining UNIRAZAK’s solid reputation for promoting entrepreneurship with GEM’s experience and extensive international network has created a mutually beneficial relationship for both institutions. UNIRAZAK thus availed itself of an opportunity to distinguish and support a remarkable research initiative carried out by some of the world’s most esteemed entrepreneurship researchers and academic institutions.

UNIRAZAK today has the opportunity to influence entrepreneurship globally as we support initiatives and research that educate business and government leaders and impact policy.  Regionally we are able to distinguish ourselves as leaders in researching and understanding entrepreneurship challenges unique to Asia.

In this regard, for the first time since GEM started, the Global Entrepreneurship Monitors Annual meeting and Global Entrepreneurship 2012 Report Launch will be held in Kuala Lumpur on the 17th January, 2013. UNIRAZAK will play host to the who’s who of the entrepreneurship research world. Additionally the lead writer for this elite global report will also be UNIRAZAK. All of this represents a first for Asia.

This synergistically furthers the mission and goals of both UNIRAZAK and GEM while enhancing the Malaysian government’s long-time interest in promoting entrepreneurship for economic development in Asia and ultimately throughout the world. Indeed the largest entrepreneurship research study in the world has come to Malaysia via Universiti Tun Abdul Razak.

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