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Institutes of Technology Ireland
Research & Innovation

Stalls Project – An Innovative Approach for Teaching Entrepreneurship

The teaching of entrepreneurship and enterprise development to students, presents certain challenges for higher education providers. The Institute of Art, Design and Technology (IADT) in Dún Laoghaire has piloted a novel approached to practice-based learning in the field of entrepreneurship education.

The Department of Business and Enterprise at IADT has expertise in business and teaching, across areas as diverse as retail management, accounting and taxation, market research, marketing and advertising. Staff within the Department partnered with the management of a local enterprise, the CoCo Markets, to develop a “learning by doing” project for students on the Bachelor of Business in Entrepreneurship programme at the Institute.

The CoCo Markets, held weekly in the People’s Park in Dún Laoghaire, is an initiative of the Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council. The markets host dozens of stalls that supply organic and artisan produce and crafts from local farmers, growers and producers. The market is managed by Ms. Jackie Spillane, who worked closely with IADT during the development and operation of this innovative project, known as the Stalls project.

The key aim of the Stalls project is to teach business students how to experience “live trading” and to deal with specific business challenges. Groups of IADT business students trade as a micro business at the market, over a two week period. During this time, the groups are required to research and develop a suitable product or service concept. They are then expected to acquire and sell the products or services at stalls at the markets. Staff from IADT and the CoCo Markets provide mentoring to the students from the inception of their ideas to the completion of the project. The students are assessed throughout the process on their abilities in marketing, accounting and management.

This project has been run as part of the academic assessment requirement for the Bachelor of Business in Entrepreneurship programme at IADT for the past five years. The success of this project has informed the development of the curriculum for the programme and for the development of the assessment strategy for the programme.

This project has encouraged staff to explore extending authentic project opportunities with other stakeholders in the community.

Testimonials

“The project is a great example of meaningful collaboration between two local public sector organisations – the innovative use of public space such as the Markets to enhance the learning environment of third level students is beneficial to both organisations. The presence of students in the Park attracts interest from both the existing traders and from customers and contributes to the positive atmosphere in the Park.”
Jackie Spillane - CoCo Market Manager

“There have been significant benefits in working with Dún Laoghaire Markets on the Stalls Project. The Stalls Project brings visibility and authenticity to the students work and also contributes to the development of student confidence. Its success is also contributing to the development of other collaborations on assessment projects with local community groups.”
Conor Heagney - Senior Lecturer in Accountancy and Finance, IADT

Client: CoCo Markets
Institution:
Institute of Art, Design and Technology
Industry: Retailing

Innovation & Commercialisation Manager

Mr. Dominic Mullan

Institute of Art, Design and Technology
Kill Avenue, Dún Laoghaire
Co. Dublin, Ireland
T: +353 (0)1 2394625

E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Senior Lecturer in Accountancy and Finance
Conor Heagney
Institute of Art, Design and Technology
Kill Avenue, Dún Laoghaire
Co. Dublin, Ireland
T: +353 (0)1 239 4753
E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.