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Essays on High-Quality Entrepreneurship: On the Origins and Survival of Start-ups and the Role of Universities in the Location Decision
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Transport and Economics.
2010 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis consists of four self-contained essays on the topic of entrepreneurship.

[Essay I] uses a unique and detailed Swedish dataset to explore firm, regional, and industry determinants that stimulate spin-offs using the choice of the individuals as the level of analysis. The most important results are that the size of the region and of the local entrepreneurial culture (the relative number of SMEs) has a positive effect on the propensity of the individual to set up a new venture corroborating the results of past firm- and regional-level studies. Industrial specialization is shown to have a positive impact on spin-offs, albeit only in high-tech manufacturing and in knowledge intensive business service sectors. Moreover, using an entropy measure to disentangle unrelated and related variety, it is found that the former has a significantly negative while the latter a significantly positive effect on the propensity of the individual to start a spin-off.

[Essay II] asks how localisation (MAR) and diversity (Jacobs) externalities affect opportunity-based entrepreneurship across all industry sectors in Sweden’s private economy in the period 1999-2005. MAR externalities are found to positively affect entrepreneurship across all sectors. Jacobs externalities, measured as related variety using an entropy measure, positively affect entrepreneurship in high-tech manufacturing and in knowledge intensive business services but have no significant effect on low-tech manufacturing and other services. The results suggest that previous studies that find no evidence of entrepreneurship benefiting from a diverse local market composition might be using too broad measures of variety.

[Essay III] analyses how different R&D strategies of incumbent firms affect the quantity and quality of their entrepreneurial spawning. By examining entrepreneurial ventures of ex-employees of firms with different R&D strategies three things emerge: First, firms with persistent R&D investments with a general superiority in sales, exports, productivity, profitability and wages are less likely to generate entrepreneurs than firm with temporary or no R&D investments. Second, start-ups from knowledge intensive business service (KIBS) firms with persistent R&D investments have a significantly increased probability of survival.  No corresponding association between the R&D strategies of incumbents and survival of entrepreneurial spawns is found for incumbents in manufacturing sectors. Third, spin-outs from KIBS-firms are more likely to survive if they start in the same firm, indicating the importance of inherited related knowledge. The findings suggest that R&D intensive firms spur fewer entrepreneurs, but their entrepreneurial spawns tend to be of higher quality.

[Essay IV] investigates how universities may affect regional entrepreneurship through the localisation decisions of entrepreneurial alumni. Empirically, a comprehensive, individual-level dataset from Sweden is used for the period 2003-2005. The results suggest that even when controlling for their spatial history, individuals have an increased propensity to set up in the region where they studied. This effect is found to substitute for both urbanisation economies and localisation economies as drivers of regional-level entrepreneurship. Thus, the analysis provides evidence on how universities affect regional economic development that complements the strong focus on spin-off activities by university researchers in previous studies.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH , 2010. , xxxix p.
Series
Trita-TEC-PHD, ISSN 1653-4468 ; 10-002
Keyword [en]
Entrepreneurship, self-employment, agglomeration externalities, innovation
National Category
Economics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-12526ISBN: 978-91-85539-52-9 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-12526DiVA: diva2:317360
Public defence
2010-05-25, F3, Lindstedtsvägen 26, KTH, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note
QC20100622Available from: 2010-05-06 Created: 2010-05-03 Last updated: 2010-06-22Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Spin-offs: Firm, Regional and Industry Determinations
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Spin-offs: Firm, Regional and Industry Determinations
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Keyword
entrepreneurship, self-employment, externalities, spin-off
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-13611 (URN)
Note
QC20100622Available from: 2010-06-22 Created: 2010-06-22 Last updated: 2010-06-22Bibliographically approved
2. Agglomeration Externalities and Opportunity: Based Entrepreneurship
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Agglomeration Externalities and Opportunity: Based Entrepreneurship
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Keyword
Entrepreneurship, externalities, agglomeration economies, entropy
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-13614 (URN)
Note
QC20100622Available from: 2010-06-22 Created: 2010-06-22 Last updated: 2010-06-22Bibliographically approved
3. R & D strategies and entrepreneurial spawning
Open this publication in new window or tab >>R & D strategies and entrepreneurial spawning
2012 (English)In: Research Policy, ISSN 0048-7333, E-ISSN 1873-7625, Vol. 41, no 1, 54-68 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper analyzes how different R&D strategies of incumbent firms affect the quantity and quality of their entrepreneurial spawning. When examining entrepreneurial ventures of ex-employees of firms with different R&D strategies, three things emerge: First, firms with persistent R&D investments and a general superiority in sales, exports, productivity, profitability and wages are less likely to generate entrepreneurs than firms with temporary or no R&D investments. Second, start-ups from knowledge intensive business service (KIBS) firms with persistent R&D investments have a significantly increased probability of survival. No corresponding association between the R&D strategies of incumbents and survival of entrepreneurial spawns is found for incumbents in manufacturing sectors. Third, spin-outs from KIBS-firms are more likely to survive if they start in the same sector, indicating the importance of inherited knowledge. These findings suggest that R&D intensive firms are less likely to generate employee start-ups, but their entrepreneurial spawns tend to be of higher quality.

Keyword
Entrepreneurship, Innovation, New firms, R&D strategy, Self-employment, Spin-off
National Category
Economics and Business
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-13616 (URN)10.1016/j.respol.2011.08.005 (DOI)000298909700005 ()2-s2.0-81855199033 (Scopus ID)
Note

QC 20100622. Updated from manuscript to article in journal.

Available from: 2010-06-22 Created: 2010-06-22 Last updated: 2015-06-25Bibliographically approved
4. Attractors of Talent: Universities, Regions and Almni Entrepreneurs
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Attractors of Talent: Universities, Regions and Almni Entrepreneurs
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Keyword
university entrepreneurship, regional impact, locaton choice analysis
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-13632 (URN)
Note
QC20100622Available from: 2010-06-22 Created: 2010-06-22 Last updated: 2010-06-22Bibliographically approved

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