How skills training can boost entrepreneurship and job creation: Evidence from Uganda

Entrepreneurship is thought of as the engine of economic growth, and has a critical role to play in generating employment. The role of small entrepreneurs is particularly notable in Africa, where opportunities in the formal economy are limited and many young people start up their own businesses as a matter of economic necessity. In this VoxDevTalk, Paul Gertler discusses the Skills for Effective Entrepreneurship Development (SEED) intervention, a three-week residential entrepreneurship skills training programme implemented in Uganda by the World Bank and the NGO Educate! starting in 2012. In a hard skill-intensive variant of the programme, 75% of the curriculum focused on business-relevant skills such as accounting and finance and 25% on soft skills such as emotional self-regulation, negotiation, and motivating teams; in the soft skill-intensive variant, these proportions were reversed. Students in both variants also received daily training and feedback in business plan development.