Linking Academia with Entrepreneurship
One of the IC recommendations in 2016, was to foster cooperation on policy advocacy and debate between IC and academia through Memorandum of Understanding. In this framework, a MoU was signed on 31 March 2017 between Epoka University and IC with the objective to closely cooperate for the exchange of statistical data, debate opinions and potential recommendations including economic analysis; organise conferences, cooperate in mutual publications; provide exchange and internship opportunities for students and exchange technical and professional assistance as well as best practices.
As a follow-up, on April 6th, 2017, the Secretariat in close cooperation with Innovation Hub, organised a first consultation meeting with representatives of EPOKA University, Ministry of Economy and Ministry of State for Innovation and Public Administration focused on concrete cooperation including how to make legally sustainable the innovation hub.
One recent finding of the Secretariat in one of its works on the importance of the availability of skilled people in the market is that the young Albanian generation is very dynamic, eager to acquire new skills, motivated but there is no model to follow. Education in universities does not meet the real need of the labour market. Therefore, it was recommended to increase partnership between the universities and private sector and Career Offices by strengthening the role of the Career Offices through internships and employment of students, early development of career counselling at school. Adapting university curricula for certain industries by implementing curricular projects and classes in the environment of the local business. Intervention in the university curricula to fulfil programmes related to the increase of analytical and practical skills of the students.
In addition, while stimulating competitiveness and entrepreneurship, administrative issues of doing business for the new Start Up has been also raised by young entrepreneurs to the Secretariat. This is also considered to be tackled by the IC in one of the next meetings while experts have started to work on the issue.