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AN INVESTIGATION INTO THE IMPACT OF ENTREPRENEURSHIP EDUCATION ON POVERTY REDUCTION IN CAMEROON

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AN INVESTIGATION INTO THE IMPACT OF ENTREPRENEURSHIP EDUCATION ON POVERTY REDUCTION IN CAMEROON

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background of the Study

Cameroon, akin to many developing nations, confronts significant hurdles in combating poverty despite its abundant natural resources and potential for economic advancement. However, poverty persists throughout diverse regions and communities, impeding sustainable development and societal advancement. While various methods have been employed to tackle poverty in Cameroon, entrepreneurship education has emerged as a promising approach to empower individuals and communities, fostering economic self-reliance and diminishing reliance on external assistance (Abdullahi, 2020).

Entrepreneurship education involves a spectrum of structured and informal initiatives aimed at equipping individuals with the knowledge, skills, and mindset necessary to recognize opportunities, create value, and manage enterprises effectively. In recent years, there has been increasing acknowledgment of entrepreneurship education's role in fostering economic development and poverty alleviation globally. However, the specific impact of entrepreneurship education programs on poverty reduction in the Cameroon remains under explored.

Furthermore, Cameroon grapples with high levels of unemployment, particularly among youth and women, who constitute significant portions of the population. Entrepreneurship education provides an alternate avenue for individuals to generate income and establish employment opportunities for others, thereby contributing to poverty alleviation and economic development  (Okifo & Ayo, 2019). Similarly, entrepreneurship education holds the potential to cultivate innovation and creativity, crucial elements for addressing the various challenges linked to poverty. By fostering an entrepreneurial mindset and imparting practical business management and innovation skills, entrepreneurship education empowers individuals to identify and pursue viable business prospects, even within resource-constrained settings.

Moreover, according to Wiig (2021) comprehending the factors that facilitate or impede the effectiveness of entrepreneurship education initiatives in poverty reduction can inform program design and implementation strategies, leading to more targeted and impactful interventions. Factors such as access to finance, mentorship opportunities, regulatory frameworks, and socio-cultural norms may influence the outcomes of entrepreneurship education programs and necessitate careful consideration in program planning and execution. On the other, the issue of poverty has persisted throughout history within human societies. A notable aspect of this problem is the variation it presents in each era, particularly regarding the demographic groups it affects and the severity of its impact (Ofori, 2021). According to Angaye (2019), poverty is increasingly engulfing a larger portion of the global population. He further asserts that the number of individuals living in poverty rose from approximately 1 billion in 1994 to 2.56 billion in 2002, despite extensive developmental efforts by governments and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to combat this issue. Olu (2020) notes a significant reduction in poverty levels in advanced countries over the years, contrasting sharply with the persistent poverty in developing nations. The World Bank (2018b) reports that over 1.4 billion people endure poverty in developing countries, with Sub-Saharan Africa facing particularly challenging circumstances, as poverty reduction efforts in this region have lagged behind other parts of the world (Chen and Ravallion, 2018; World Bank, 2018a). Furthermore, investigating the impact of entrepreneurship education on poverty reduction in Cameroon is imperative for guiding policy decisions and resource allocation strategies. Governments, non-governmental organizations, and other stakeholders require evidence-based insights to devise and execute effective entrepreneurship education programs tailored to the unique requirements and constraints of the Cameroon. Therefore, a survey will be conducted in order to investigate into the impact of entrepreneurship education on poverty reduction in Cameroon.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

Despite various efforts to alleviate poverty in Cameroon, significant challenges persist, hindering sustainable development and socioeconomic progress. According to Arshed, N., Anwar, A., Kousar, N., & Bukhari, S. (2018),   high levels of unemployment, particularly among youth and women, coupled with limited access to economic opportunities, exacerbate the cycle of poverty in many communities. In addition, entrepreneurship education has emerged as a potential strategy to empower individuals, create employment, and stimulate economic growth. However, the specific impact of entrepreneurship education programs on poverty reduction in Cameroon remains unclear. Furthermore, Sari (2018)  asserts that the problem of the research is the lack of comprehensive understanding regarding the effectiveness of entrepreneurship education in mitigating poverty in Cameroon. Although anecdotal evidence implies that entrepreneurship education can provide individuals with the skills and mindset required to initiate and maintain businesses, there is a scarcity of empirical studies that investigate its influence on reducing poverty in Cameroon. Moreover, the factors that hinder the success of entrepreneurship education initiatives in reducing poverty remain poorly understood. Thus, it is in the light of these that the study seeks to an investigate into the impact of entrepreneurship education on poverty reduction in Cameroon.

1.3  Objectives of the Study

The main purpose of this study is on an evaluation of management skills required to enhance the entrepreneurial competencies business education graduates in Cameroon. Specifically, the study will;

1.Investigate the causes of poverty in Cameroon.

2.Assess the contribution of entrepreneurship education on poverty reduction in Cameroon.

3.Investigate the problems affecting the effectiveness of entrepreneurship education towards the reduction of poverty in Cameroon.

 1.4 Research Questions

The following questions have been prepared for the study:

What are the underlying causes of poverty in Cameroon?

How does entrepreneurship education contribute to poverty reduction in Cameroon?

What are the key challenges hindering the effectiveness of entrepreneurship education in reducing poverty in Cameroon?

1.5 Research Hypothesis

Ho: There is no significant relationship between entrepreneurship education and poverty reduction in Cameroon

Ha: There is a significant relationship between entrepreneurship education and poverty reduction in Cameroon

1.6 Significance of the Study

The findings of this study will provide policymakers, government agencies, and non-governmental organizations with evidence-based insights into the effectiveness of entrepreneurship education as a poverty reduction strategy in Cameroon. This information will inform the development of targeted policies, programs, and interventions aimed at fostering entrepreneurship and economic empowerment, thereby contributing to poverty alleviation efforts. Furthermore, the findings will empower individuals and communities to harness entrepreneurial opportunities effectively. It will also help identify the skills, knowledge, and support structures needed to facilitate entrepreneurship among marginalized groups, such as youth, women, and rural populations, enabling them to create sustainable livelihoods and improve their socio-economic well-being. Additionally, subsequent researchers will use it as a literature review. This means that other students who may decide to conduct studies in this area will have the opportunity to use this study as available literature that can be subjected to critical review. Invariably, the result of the study contributes immensely to the body of academic knowledge with regard to an investigation into the impact of entrepreneurship education on poverty reduction in Cameroon.

1.6 Scope of the study

The scope of this study is to investigate into the impact of entrepreneurship education on poverty reduction in Cameroon. Empirically, this study will investigate the causes of poverty in Cameroon, assess the contribution of entrepreneurship education on poverty reduction in Cameroon and investigate the problems affecting the effectiveness of entrepreneurship education towards the reduction of poverty in Cameroon.

Geographically, the study will be delimited to undergraduate students of University of Douala, Cameroon

1.7 Limitation of the study

In the course of carrying out this study, the researcher experienced some constraints, which included time constraints, financial constraints, language barriers, and the attitude of the respondents. In addition, there was the element of researcher bias. Here, the researcher possessed some biases that may have been reflected in the way the data was collected, the type of people interviewed or sampled, and how the data gathered was interpreted thereafter. The potential for all this to influence the findings and conclusions could not be downplayed. 

More so, the findings of this study are limited to the sample population in the study area, hence they may not be suitable for use in comparison to other schools, local governments, states, and other countries in the world.

 1.8 Definition of Terms

Poverty: refers to a state of deprivation where individuals or communities lack the financial resources, basic necessities, and opportunities required to meet their fundamental needs for a decent standard of living.

Entrepreneurship education: These are programs, courses, and initiatives designed to equip individuals with the knowledge, skills, and mindset necessary to identify, evaluate, and pursue entrepreneurial opportunities effectively.


This material content is developed to serve as a GUIDE for students to conduct academic research



Delivery: Within 24 hours

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  • Methodology: Yes available


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