#253. Global Entrepreneurship Week – Nov. 16-22

Posted on | The Agurban

Global Entrepreneurship Week – Nov. 16-22

Global Entrepreneurship Week was founded last year by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and Make Your Mark. The program is expected to draw nearly 3 million people to panels, forums and other events around the world, including an innovation tournament and a clean tech competition. Encouraging entrepreneurship among teens will be a key focus of the proceedings.

At the heart of Global Entrepreneurship Week is what the Kauffman Foundation calls the “coming entrepreneurship boom” among people ages 20 to 34. Despite the success of Facebook and Twitter-whose founders aren’t much older than the Internet itself-the highest rate of entrepreneurial activity is currently among those aged 55 to 64, according to a June report from the foundation.

But as the recession forces teens to look outside the limited job market, many are considering entrepreneurship as a viable alternative.

“Right now, we’re going through a fundamental shift in the nation’s economy,” says Gary Whitehill, founder of New York Entrepreneur Week, a local version of the global event. “Unstable times create incredible opportunities, and there’s an important opportunity for the younger generation.”

Baby boomers aging out of the workforce, coupled with fewer people sticking with one “lifetime” career, may also encourage young people to start their own businesses, according to the report.

Perhaps undeterred by past failures, younger entrepreneurs also tend to be more upbeat. Eighty percent of Generation Y entrepreneurs (ages 18-28) have a positive outlook on the economy, compared with 55% of those aged 29-44 and 52% of baby boomers (ages 45-63), according to a recent study from American Express OPEN, which focuses on small business. Gen Y entrepreneurs are also the most likely to hire, have a capital investment plan and take financial risk, and the least likely to have cash flow issues.

To learn more about the Kauffman Foundation and Global Entrepreneurship week, click here.