2012 To INSPIRE: increasing intrapreneurial skills through pedagogy increases innovation, retention and employability

Heidi Probst, Angela Eddy, David Eddy, J Cumming and N Jones

In 2007 the UK National Radiotherapy Advisory Group report[1] to ministers indicated a dramatic revision of workforce provision was needed in order to meet the objectives of the NHS cancer plan. Intrapreneurship (an individual intention or drive to innovate within an organization[2]) is relevant to these roles but the development of skills for enterprising activity is rarely attended to in health care training.

The aim of this study was to develop an intrapreneurial enhanced pedagogy for oncology practitioners studying at Master level.


Stage 1 involved a qualitative investigation of identified intrapreneurs working within Radiation Therapy to identify the factors that contributed to their intrapreneurial development. Grounded Theory methodology was used and seven individual interviews were undertaken with data saturation occurring at interview 5. Sampling was purposive and interview data was enhanced by a review of the literature on intrapreneurial education. Member-checking, peer de-briefing and reflexivity were used to enhance trustworthiness and authenticity of the data.
Four key concepts were identified from the interviews; self- efficacy, intrapreneurial strategies, intrapreneurial learning, and organisational emphasis on intrapreneurialism.

A review of the literature complemented this data collection stage resulting in a theoretical model of the path to intrapreneurialism in Radiation Therapists; this formed the basis of an online pedagogy for a PG module on breast cancer radiotherapy to enhance intrapreneurial skills and improve services to patients.
Integrating innovation into specialist health modules is possible using the intrapreneurial pedagogy developed. However, it is not without challenges and an acceptance that not all students will benefit from this approach or see the need or relevance for intrapreneurial activity. 

This presentation will allow delegates to consider the benefits and challenges of using an intrapreneurial pedagogy through the experience of this small research project. Sharing some of the unexpected student outcomes will highlight the benefits of this pedagogical approach.

Reference List

  (1)   National Radiotherapy Advisory Group. Radiotherapy: developing a world class service for England (Report to Ministers).  2007.
  (2)   Amo B, Kolvereid L. ORGANIZATIONAL STRATEGY, INDIVIDUAL PERSONALITY AND INNOVATION BEHAVIOR. Journal of Enterprising Culture 2005 Mar;13(1):7-19.

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