June 15, 2014
June 15, 2014
June 18, 2014
24.464.1 - 24.464.13
There are so many pre-‐requisites for a successful entrepreneurship in manufacturing but the fundamental requirement is a smart idea which should originate from engineering and technology. Normally a societal need and its requirements identified by the marketing sector are refined as a set of final requirements for a new product. Thoughts are then focussed to fulfil this set of requirements which thus is a ‘causal thinking’ towards achieving an effect or goal. If now there are no requirements or set causes to focus the thought process and there are several technologies and knowledge components lying around, the challenge is to identify goals that can be achieved with these means. Saraswathy  named this as Effectual Thinking which is the inverse of causal thinking and is the nucleus of entrepreneurship since this can identify smart new ideas. A systematic effectual thinking methodology involves: i. Choosing the technologies that have to be put under scrutiny ii. Carrying out trials to understand the entire characteristics so that the technology and engineering can be used to its best advantage iii. Starting reverse mapping or effectual thinking to identify goals or entrepreneurial opportunities after understanding the capabilities of the technology. The methodology was put to test in the Design and Manufacture Lab course of the Mechanical Engineering program in the United Arab Emirates University to achieve the course outcome ‘Students demonstrate an appreciation for entrepreneurial opportunities relevant to design and manufacturing’. In this task a vertical and a horizontal CNC machining centres are the technologies chosen for scrutiny. Two groups of five students each designed a pendent for a key chain that will fully exploit the capabilities of CAD/CAM and the two machining centres in its manufacture. They were to make careful observations about the technological capabilities of CAD/CAM and the machines that they can use to assist ‘Effectual Thinking’ later. They were then asked to come up with entrepreneurial ideas. Observations were made on (i) Organized structure and cognitive action (ii) Scoping and information gathering (iii) Consideration of alternatives (iv) Learning experience and (v) Quality of ideas. The results suggest that Effectual Thinking can be used as a structured method for entrepreneurial activity. The paper describes the methodology, description of the case, students’ entrepreneurial ideas for products or services using these machines and observations described above. Reference: 1 Saraswathy S.D., What makes Entrepreneurs Entrepreneurial, University of Washington, 2003.
Sivaloganathan, S., & Ganithi, R. (2014, June), Effectual Thinking: A Systematic Approach for Teaching Entrepreneurship as Part of a Design and Manufacture Lab Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. https://peer.asee.org/20355
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