Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Papers in Innovation Studies,
Lund University, CIRCLE - Centre for Innovation Research

No 2021/9: Scaling up in Entrepreneurial Ecosystems: A comparative study of Entrepreneurial Ecosystems in Life Science

Janna Alvedalen () and Bo Carlsson ()
Additional contact information
Janna Alvedalen: CIRCLE, Lund University, Postal: CIRCLE - Centre for Innovation Research, Lund University, PO Box 117, SE-22100 Lund, Sweden
Bo Carlsson: Case Western Reserve University, Postal: USA

Abstract: Scaling-up is still underexplored in the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem literature. This paper presents a comparative analysis of five Entrepreneurial Ecosystems in Life Sciences in Sweden and the US, based on own data collection. It examines the factors that support or impede the scale-up process of firms in different geographical contexts. The paper outlines firm-specific and firm-external factors important to high-growth firms in Life Science and shows these factors differentiate across distinct geographical contexts. The study sheds light on key enablers and barriers to scaling-up in Entrepreneurial Ecosystems and the roles of different actors including growth ambition, technological expertise, management competence, business model alteration, funding, global firms, human capital, support organizations, local growth culture, hospitals and universities.

Keywords: Entrepreneurial Ecosystem; scale-up; high-growth firms; Life Sciences; Sweden; U.S.

JEL-codes: L26; M21; O33

33 pages, August 20, 2021

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