Fostering Entrepreneurship – The Role of Hackathons in Enhancing Challenge-Based Learning in Entrepreneurship Education

Research output: Contribution to conferencePresentation


Entrepreneurship education is recognised as pivotal within the higher education landscape and plays a fundamental role in educating future leaders and equipping them with the tools to address grand societal challenges. Against this background, entrepreneurship education is rapidly evolving with a plethora of methodologies and tools being utilised in the classroom. One such tool is challenge-based learning (CBL) which is underpinned by an action-based and collaborative methodology Increasingly, universities in collaboration with stakeholders are applying challenge-based learning approaches to solve complex or wicked societal problems. We report on our experience with implementing a challenge-based learning exercise delivered via a residential hackathon as a methodology for students to experience entrepreneurship and develop solutions to real and complex problems. True to the principles of CBL, our participants (students, stakeholders, facilitators) were drawn from a multidisciplinary and international pool. The CBL/hackathon project was designed and facilitated by the SETU GROWTHhub and ERASMUS+ project DIFUCH. The DIFUCH project is a collaboration between SETU, Ireland, Hanze University Groningen, Netherlands and IPB, Portugal with the aim of developing a digital future challenge-based learning joint programme. The SETU GROWTHhub is a Higher Education Authority Human Capital Initiative designed to encourage growth and entrepreneurial mindsets among students. We outline our learnings from integrating hackathons within a challenge based education framework for students pursuing entrepreneurship studies. We describe the multifaceted benefits that hackathons offer in a CBL framework in fostering practical entrepreneurial skills, nurturing an innovation-driven mindset, and promoting interdisciplinary collaboration.
Original languageEnglish (Ireland)
Publication statusPublished - 13 Dec 2023
EventEvent: DEC23: Digital Education Conference, Waterford, Ireland.
- SETU, Waterford, Ireland
Duration: 12 Dec 202313 Jun 2024


ConferenceEvent: DEC23: Digital Education Conference, Waterford, Ireland.
Internet address


  • CBL, hackathons, ERASMUS+


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