Educating Entrepreneurial Citizens: Neoliberalism and Youth Livelihoods in Tanzania, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Educating Entrepreneurial Citizens

Neoliberalism and Youth Livelihoods in Tanzania, 1st Edition

By Joan DeJaeghere


182 pages | 2 B/W Illus.

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Educating Entrepreneurial Citizens examines the multiple and contradictory purposes and effects of entrepreneurship education aimed at addressing youth unemployment and alleviating poverty in Tanzania.

Governments in sub-Saharan Africa face increasing pressure to educate young people through secondary school, supposedly equipping them with knowledge and skills for employment and their future. At the same time, many youths do not complete their education and there are insufficient jobs to employ graduates. The development community sees entrepreneurship education as one viable solution to the double edged problem of inadequate education and few jobs. But while entrepreneurship education is aligned with a governing rationality of neoliberalism that requires individuals to create their own livelihoods without government social supports, the two NGO programs discussed in this book draw on a rights-based discourse that seeks to educate those not served by government schools, providing them with educational and social supports to be included in society. The chapters explore the tensions that occur when international organizations and NGOs draw on both neoliberal and liberal human rights discourses to address the problems of poverty, unemployment and poor quality education. Furthermore, when these neo/liberal perspectives meet local ideas of reciprocity and solidarity, they create friction and alter the programs and effects they have on youth.

The book introduces the concept of entrepreneurial citizens—those who utilize their innovative skills and behaviors to claim both economic and social rights from which they had been previously excluded. The programs taught youth how to develop their own enterprises, to earn profits, and to save for their own futures; but youth used their education, skills and labor to provide for basic needs, to be included in society, and to support their and their families’ well-being. By showing the contradictory effects of entrepreneurship education programs, the book asks international agencies and governments to consider how they can go beyond technical approaches of creating enterprises and increasing income, and head toward approaches that consider the kinds of labor that young people and communities value for their wellbeing.

This book will be of interest to scholars and practitioners of education and international development, youth studies, African Studies and entrepreneurship/social entrepreneurship education.


With rich empirical data collected in Tanzania and thoughtful policy analysis, this splendidly structured and written book shows how the dominant neoliberal ideas of entrepreneurship education and training are never entirely hegemonic, and can be re-articulated in a variety of ways to reflect the lived realities and hopeful aspirations of young people in specific local contexts.

Fazal Rizvi, The University of Melbourne Australia

Educating Entrepreneurial Citizenspresents a powerful, provocative analysis of the political, economic, and social forces that shape global discourses and local practices of entrepreneurship education and are reshaping conventional notions of citizenship. Drawing on a remarkably rich set of longitudinal data, DeJaeghere develops a comparative case study of two entrepreneurship programs in Tanzania and shows how they link neoliberal ideas about capital and markets to pro-poor strategies aimed at improving youth livelihoods and wellbeing. This book is a must-read for students and scholars in development studies, international education, and African studies.

Frances Vavrus, University of Minnesota

Table of Contents

1. Introduction 2. Neo/liberal Governmentality and Citizen Subjectivities 3. Approaches to Entrepreneurship Education 4. Researching the Tanzanian Experience 5. Governing Regimes in Tanzania 6. Educating for Self-sufficiency: Schools, markets and social good 7. Becoming Entrepreneurial Citizens: Economic development and social relations 8. Educating Youth as Financially Responsible and Inclusive Citizens 9. Conclusions Appendix

About the Author

Joan DeJaeghere is Associate Professor of Comparative and International Development Education at the University of Minnesota, USA.

About the Series

Education, Poverty and International Development

This series of research-based monographs and edited collections provides new analyses of the relationships between education, poverty and international development. The series offers important theoretical and methodological frameworks for the study of developing-country education systems, in the context of national cultures and ambitious global agendas. It aims to identify the key policy challenges associated with addressing social inequalities, uneven social and economic development and the opportunities to promote democratic and effective educational change.

The series brings together researchers from the fields of anthropology, economics, development studies, educational studies, politics international relations and sociology. It represents a unique opportunity to publish work by some of the most distinguished writers in the fields of education and development along with that of new authors working on important empirical projects. The series contributes important insights on the linkages between education and society based on inter-disciplinary, international and national studies.

Sharp, critical and innovative studies are sought that are likely to have a strategic influence upon the thinking of academics and policy-makers. They may include critical syntheses of existing research and policy, innovative research methodologies, and in-depth evaluations of major policy developments. Some studies will address topics relevant to poverty alleviation, national and international policy-making and aid, whilst others may represent anthropological or sociological investigations on how education works or does not work within local communities, for households living in poverty or for particular socially marginalised groups. Preference will be given to studies with a comparative international approach although some single-country studies will be considered, where they raise interesting theoretical and policy issues with clear relevance for international audiences.




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