Junior enterprise

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A junior enterprise is a civil social nonprofit organization established and executed entirely by students of a university or a business school, both at the undergraduate and postgraduate level. The purpose of the organization is to provide services for companies, institutions and society, often in the form of consultancies, while enriching the learning of its members with practical experience in the field of their studies. Often, a junior enterprise is linked to a particular university or business school; by internal regulation, in most of the cases a student must be studying at the specific university in order to actively join the organization.

The most common expertise areas for junior enterprises are business and management, engineering, marketing, communication, IT services and law. The members of the organization have the chance to take part in real-world projects, while experiencing the functioning of a real company: junior enterprises, indeed, either are real companies, or resemble one in their operational activities, often having a management council and an executive board, together with an own regulation.[1]

The concept[edit]

  1. Non-profit
    1.1 Not necessarily by legal status but by nature of activities (in countries, where legal circumstances affect the non-profit legal status)
    1.2 Surplus of the JE should not be used for any economic benefits for the members of the JE unless it is for execution of project work. If the legal status allows economic benefits for Management Board, then the National umbrella should ensure that there is a rule in place to prevent this from happening in a JE
  2. Non-political: not affiliated to political movement or party, however, able to lobby
  3. Non-religious: not affiliated to a religious movement or church
  4. Managed entirely by students: only students make and execute strategic decisions.
  5. Linked to an institution of higher education, but not necessarily affiliated legally. However, support from the University should be proactively sought.
  6. Legal entity: legal settlement should be proactively sought.
  7. Fostering entrepreneurship spirit:
    7.1 Proactively engaging members in decision making;
    7.2 Encouraging them to start their own projects;
    7.3 Actively look for new opportunities.
  8. Contribute to the development of the National Network by providing trainings to the Junior Entrepreneurs about the Network and motivating them to be a part of its activities.
  9. Fostering members development
    9.1 The end result of every project should be the development of members by any mean;
    9.2 Every project should develop a soft or a hard skill. The business acquisition, however, if the market allows, should focus on acquiring projects which develop hard skills (e.g.: resource management, analytics, technical, etc.)
    9.3 Projects should assume interaction with external parties: private and civil companies
  10. Aiming at sustainable activity (at least one project a year must be run for clients). Thus, the Junior Enterprise seeks the quality implementation of the Concept.


This is an opportunity for students to develop self-confidence and experience entrepreneurship at an early stage in their careers, to add practical experience to the theoretical skills and to provide private business with state-of-the-art knowledge from universities.

Due to the particularity of the Junior Enterprise work, the students distinguish themselves for example by their soft skills such as entrepreneurial spirit, team-working, creativity, presentation skills, public speaking, networking and intercultural understanding, work experience, and project management.


JE Europe[edit]

The Junior Enterprise Europe was created in 1992 under the name 'JADE - European Confederation of Junior Enterprises' in order to link all the national confederations of Junior Enterprises in Europe. The founding members were the Netherlands (FNJE), Portugal (JEP), Italy (CIJE), Switzerland (USJE) and France (CNJE).

Today, the network counts 31.000 student members in fifteen countries, organised in around 280 Junior Enterprises. JE Europe coordinates Junior Initiatives all over Europe and fosters their development. Together with Brasil Junior, the Junior Enterprise Network in Brazil, JE Europe is one of the largest student networks in the world.

As the voice of the Junior Enterprise Movement and youth entrepreneurship in Europe, JE Europe's mission is to:

  • Represent the European Junior Enterprise (JE) Movement
  • Integrate the European Network of Junior Enterprises thus encouraging knowledge exchange and cooperation
  • Support the development of our members (Confederations and Consultative Members)
  • Foster the Junior Enterprise Concept to non-member countries
  • Encourage entrepreneurship among students in higher Education through the Junior Enterprise Concept.

Based in Brussels, JE Europe works closely with the European Institutions, with international organisations (UNESCO, OECD, World Bank) to promote the importance of entrepreneurship education and youth entrepreneurship in young people, providing a valuable learning-by-doing experience and providing students with the skills they will need to be successful in the labour market.

JE Europe's work and recognitions[edit]

The recognition and acceptance of the Junior Enterprise movement by politicians, public institutions and companies, confirms and proofs the concept of junior entrepreneurship:[3]

  • Junior Enterprise is an example of best practice for practical education and development under the Lisbon Strategy: governing strategy of EU in 2000-2010. "Facilitate the development of Junior Enterprises" is a key priority for Education and Youth Framework of EU2020 –governing strategy of EU in 2010-2020.
  • JE Europe is a best practice of an intermediary organisation that brings universities and businesses together under EU Oslo Agenda for Entrepreneurship Education.[4]
  • JE Europe is in the Steering Board of UNESCO Youth Committee for Higher Education.
  • JE Europe is a stakeholder consultant for the World Bank, the World Economic Forum and the EU.

Impact on employment and entrepreneurship[edit]

Facts and Figures[edit]

Diverse studies carried out by JE Europe, the European Commission and other parties, prove that participation in a Junior Enterprise dramatically improves a student's career perspectives, employment and intentions towards entrepreneurship.[5]

  • More than 60% of students who were part of a Junior Enterprise find a job before ending their studies.
  • Former Junior Entrepreneurs have significantly better career start after university and continue to develop more successfully in the long-term than their peers' average without JE experience.
  • 21% of the Junior Entrepreneurs end up starting their own business within the first 3 years after graduation, when the EU average is 4-8 %.
  • A study ("Effects and impact of entrepreneurship programmes in Higher Education"[6]) carried out by the European Commission (DG ENTR) on JE Europe Alumni, compared with normal students shows that:
    • 25% of JE Europe Alumni indicate that it is (very) likely for them to start their own business within the next ten years; compared to 16% of other students that have taken entrepreneurial education formal courses and to 10% of students who have not received any kind of entrepreneurship education;
    • 78% of JE Europe Alumni find a job right after graduation; compared to 66% of other students that have taken entrepreneurial education courses and to 59% of students who have not received any kind of entrepreneurship education

Brasil Júnior - Brazilian Confederation of Junior Enterprises[edit]

Brasil Junior is the world's biggest junior enterprise confederation, composed by more than 1335[7] confederated junior enterprises and more than 22,000 junior entrepreneurs. It has as purpose to represent the junior enterprises nationwide and develop the Junior Enterprise Movement as an agent of business education and generation of new business. It is currently formed by 19 state federations.

Brasil Júnior works to bring together the state federations at meetings, and mainly, the junior enterprises at ENEJ (National Meeting of Junior Enterprises). In 2014, ENEJ happened at Espírito Santo with the attendance of 1,800 junior entrepreneurs.

Last year, from 13 to August 17 ENEJ happened at Brasilia, Brazil's capital. Around 2,500 junior entrepreneurs went to the event.

Rest of the world[edit]

Recently, junior enterprises appeared also in China, especially on the campus of Peking University. The movement is also taking its first step in North America with the recent launch a cross-faculty Junior Enterprise at McGill University in Canada. Shortly after the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign launched the first JE in the US.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Guerrero, Gorka. "Discover the Junior Enterprise concept". Junior Enterprise. Retrieved 2020-02-09.
  2. ^ Website of the French confederation Archived 2009-07-14 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ http://www.jadenet.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/JEs-Employability.pdf[permanent dead link]
  4. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-01-31. Retrieved 2013-07-25.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  5. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2013-07-25.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  6. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-05-13. Retrieved 2013-07-25.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  7. ^ About Brasil Júnior(Portuguese) Archived 2011-05-19 at the Wayback Machine

External links[edit]