University of Oulu, 2019

Pathways to Business

Project description

The main objective of the project is to develop a new operating model to meet the need for the development and support of highly unemployed jobseekers and early stage entrepreneurship and working life skills in higher education. Development work on the project is carried out extensively in partnership with universities, employment services, micro-entrepreneurs, business organizations and stakeholders. The project will develop through experimentation how the University of Oulu, Oulu University of Applied Sciences, BusinessOulu/BusinessAsema, micro-entrepreneurs in the region, business organizations and other stakeholders could make a meaningful contribution to the smooth transition of already graduated unemployed job seekers and students to working life and the transition to entrepreneurship.


The project will therefore develop new forms and methods of cooperation to support the earliest stages of entrepreneurship. The aim is to develop customer-oriented early-stage entrepreneurship support through educational means and to increase the provision of tailor-made local business services to the target group. The training emphasizes community (exploiting the group's potential in the early stages of entrepreneurship) and interdisciplinarity. The project thus promotes entrepreneurial spirit, entrepreneurial readiness, the identification of entrepreneurial potential among newly graduated unemployed and other target groups, and a variety of educational activities. One of the key objectives of the project is to increase cooperation between actors at the interface between universities and employment services.


Key actions of the project are: 1) Build and pilot new types of coaching and other training, both long and short, to support early target groups in entrepreneurship. 2) Create a new approach to support early-stage entrepreneurship for unemployed highly educated job seekers based on project experience and research evidence. 3) Develop new forms of early-stage entrepreneurship cooperation and service delivery through collaboration between universities, the City of Oulu's Employment Services, micro-entrepreneurs, business organizations and stakeholders. 4) Strengthen and create lasting structures for cooperation between early stage entrepreneurs.

Project coordinator

University of Oulu


Oulu University of Applied Sciences