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Prof (Dr) Manoj Joshi

The author is a Fellow Institution of Engineers, Professor of Strategy, Director, Centre for VUCA Studies, Amity University, with over 29 years of experience in industry & research. He has authored over 75 articles, co-authored three books 'The VUCA Company', 'The VUCA Learner', 'Role of Business Incubators in Economic growth of India' and is also on the editorial board of several international refereed journals.

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Fostering Entrepreneurialism Through Policy Interventions

To gain perspective in the Indian context, it’s worth recalling that even the Gods had to churn the cosmic ocean to get the elixir!

“When in Rome do as the Romans do”. Similarly, in an entrepreneurial ecosystem the spirit of entrepreneurialism is undeniable. Such a business ecosystem creation is an outcome of multi-pronged approach, aspiring stabilisation, and resilience through policy interventions from actors obliterating uncertainty in the long run. 

Uncertainty often culls several formative ventures. Anxieties of entrepreneurial individuals are in context to initial funding for infrastructural setup, working capital, potential markets for the services/product, garnering adequate experience in the team, seeking assistive mentorship, and making connections with potential future investors. 

The ecosystem creation through informing, educating and communicating on various available entrepreneurial channels is of paramount importance. The process needs to be incepted right at the doorstep of real-world exposure and college/university education. Creating awareness at this vital juncture will foster the thought of entrepreneurialism in this youth brigade instilling a desire for transformation through entrepreneurial actions. 

The government as an actor has a vital role during economic expansion when it comes to small and entrepreneurial businesses, which are in turn the driving wheels for bolstered economic activities. The government policies aim to propel the socio-economic activities of such individual led firms on a different trajectory altogether. The widening of the business scope is achieved in the process. 

Support to garner infrastructural and technological investments drives the thought of entrepreneurialism for such individuals, thus creating employment opportunities through tapping the local tangible resources and idle manpower. Multiple agencies and departmental actions translate the government policies into action at ground level. Finance schemes like those through MUDRA (Micro Units Development and Refinance Agency) loans provide opportunity for such firms to access funds for inception without any collateral. NABARD (National Bank for Agriculture And Rural Development), an established institution had been primarily focusing on providing credit lines for integrated rural development. Project cost up to ninety percent can be financed through NABARD schemes in the sectors, thus creating an opportune setup towards fostering entrepreneurialism, even at remote geographic recesses. With a renewed focus on women participation in economic growth, the 2016 scheme of Stand-up India extends working capital loan to firms fulfilling certain criteria of ownership by women. Every branch of a nationalised bank is mandated to extend the facility for minimum one woman entrepreneur under this scheme. Aiming to provide capacity building opportunities for different category of entrepreneurs is an objective of Indian government’s policy. Creating new markets and advertising existing ones has also taken up priority for governments with schemes like ODOP (One District One product) promoting locally made distinguished products. This aims to draw investors and germinate entrepreneurial businesses at local levels for realising the full socio-economic potential of the region. 

Capital infusion with admittance to capital is accessible within framework of tangibles. Mentoring of budding entrepreneurs is a different ballgame altogether. The challenge lies in harnessing the passion of such individuals to channelise it towards rewarding propositions for them and the society. There is focussed effort by the policy makers in creating structural setups for furthering learning skills of such a segment. Skill development has been embedded in youth development programs, which would potentially create employers of future rather than mundane job-seekers post education. Fluidity at the industry-academia interface will pace up knowledge sharing, thereby building the confidence to think, act, pursue for navigating the uncertainties ahead. 

Will the policy interventions create a future-ready brigade of entrepreneurs? 

In this fast paced innovative world being increasingly driven by Artificial Intelligence based smart systems, the need for fostering entrepreneurialism still stays relevant. In a country gaining momentum to become one of the major global economic powerhouses, still reliant on agriculture as its mainstay, aspires improved healthcare services with an overall upliftment of living standards, it is worth exploring on the contribution by entrepreneurs in comprehending the scenario. The future beckons those who can challenge the normal, elevate the performance and unlock the potential of an apparently dormant yet turbulent entrepreneurial ecosystem. To gain perspective in the Indian context, it’s worth recalling that even the Gods had to churn the cosmic ocean to get the elixir!

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house



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