46 Simulation games Christian Lendner and Jutta Huebscher ENTREPRENEURSHIP SIMULATION GAMES Entrepreneurship education requires teaching methods that try to assimilate the complexity of real business. A simulation game can be defined as a dynamic model of the real entrepreneurial process in which a balanced number of decision variables require strategic integration of several subunits such as marketing or new venture finance for organizational start-up performance (Keys and Wolfe, 1990). The game is a teaching method which provides first-hand multiple experiences of management interdependencies and competition in one common marketplace. Participants allocate virtual resources and have to follow the rules of the specific virtual market framework in their decision-making process (Klabbers, 1999). This concrete experience and its outcome are observed and reflected on by the participants in an iterative process with immediate feedback. Games are designed specifically to eliminate some of the complexity and accelerate the frame of action of the long-run planning situation in order to mirror the whole entrepreneurial process (see Keys and Wolfe, 1990). Simulation games are all quite similar in that they require input from the students who must first process the information. Then participants are confronted with a certain outcome of their decisions, both in absolute terms of profit, loss, liquidity status or market share, and in relation to other virtual competitors. The models of the games are usually designed to show the general principles of management interdependencies and strategy and to teach students not to focus too much on tactical decisions based on revelations of...
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