Dutch students are more frequently starting up a company in addition to their education. They are following a worldwide trend. That follows from research by the Erasmus Centre for Entrepreneurship (ECE).

From a questionnaire completed by some ten thousand students, it is evident that two years ago three percent of students were independent entrepreneurs. Today this number is six percent and therefore appears to have doubled.

It can be argued that this number may not be quite as high. According to Hendrik Halbe, managing director of the ECE and one of the authors of the report about the Netherlands, the sample contains more students from higher professional education this time and they are more entrepreneurial. Furthermore, there was a far greater response from some universities than from others; by far most of the respondents study in Rotterdam or Groningen.

Entrepreneurship on the rise

However, it does fit into the global picture that emerges from the Global University Entrepreneurial Spirit Students’ Survey (Guesss), which assesses the global inclination towards entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurship appears to be on the rise in other countries as well: internationally, the number of students with their own company rose from two to eight percent, according to Halbe.

Future dreams

Right after their graduation most students want to work in a small or medium-sized company, but they also dream about the future: 27 percent wants to be their own boss after five years or so. Men tend to say so more often than women (31.3 compared to 24.5 percent). HOP