Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Papers in Innovation Studies,
Lund University, CIRCLE - Center for Innovation, Research and Competences in the Learning Economy

No 2006/6: A Knowledge-based Categorization of Research-based Spin-off Creation

Jonas Gabrielsson (), Hans Landström () and Brunsnes E. Thomas
Additional contact information
Jonas Gabrielsson: CIRCLE, Lund University, Postal: PO Box 117, Sölvegatan 16, SE-22100 Lund, Sweden
Hans Landström: Institute of Economic Research, Lund University, Postal: Sweden
Brunsnes E. Thomas: CIRCLE, Lund University, Postal: PO Box 117, Sölvegatan 16, SE-22100 Lund, Sweden

Abstract: In this paper we argue for the need of sector contextualization to achieve a better understanding of new venture activities aimed at commercializing university generated knowledge. From this perspective, we contend that an analysis of the creation of research-based spin-offs (RBSOs) must take place within a context of the specific knowledge base around which the new venture is formed. Two distinct knowledge bases are identified: analytical (science-based) knowledge and synthetic (engineering-based) knowledge. Propositions related to the processes governing the creation of RBSOs are developed, depending on whether the opportunity around which the new venture is formed has an analytical or a synthetic knowledge base. This means that we see the formation and early development of RBSOs as a historically determined heterogeneous trajectory, where differences in the underlying knowledge base may significantly affect the new venture creation process.

Keywords: Entrepreneurship; knowledge bases; new venture creation; researchbased spin-offs; university-generated knowledge

JEL-codes: O30

27 pages, June 1, 2006

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