Technology Transfer and Entrepreneurship

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The Role Formal and Informal Policies Play in Encouraging University Entrepreneurship

Author(s): Laura Schultz.

Abstract:

The creation of startup companies to commercialize university innovations generates revenue for the university and inventor, attracts star researchers, and promotes economic growth. Despite these benefits, the levels of technology licensing and startup companies vary widely across universities. These differences have been attributed to factors such as institutional support for entrepreneurial activity, institutional prestige, proximity to venture capital and related industry, and sources of research funding. All of these factors combine to create an entrepreneurial environment in which inventors either perceive that entrepreneurship is encouraged or discouraged. This paper is a meta case study examining the entrepreneurial environments at twenty universities: ten that have been very successful at generating startup companies and ten that have underperformed. The role of formal policies such as royalty distribution, conflict of interest, and tenure and promotion are explored. In addition the availability of entrepreneurial programming such as education, business plan competitions, and incubators are studied. Together these formal policies and entrepreneurship programming create the ecosystem in which the inventors and entrepreneurs will need to operate in order to find success. Best practices for encouraging technology commercialization through entrepreneurship are identified.

Keywords: Commercialization, entrepreneurship, entrepreneurship education, entrepreneurial ecosystem, technology transfer, university startups.

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Article Details

VOLUME: 1
ISSUE: 2
Year: 2014
Page: [92 - 103]
Pages: 12
DOI: 10.2174/221380990102140926121246