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Barriers and drivers for technology commercialization by SMEs in the Dutch sustainable energy sector

L.L.J. Meijer, J.C.C.M. Huijben, A. van Boxstael and A.G.L. Romme

Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 2019, vol. 112, issue C, 114-126

Abstract: To enable the transition to renewable and sustainable energy systems, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) can successfully commercialize new technologies, yet doing so is highly challenging. Moreover, governmental policy makers tend to support measures for early-stage ventures or university spin-offs, based on the assumption that sustainable energy technologies primarily arise from early-stage technology development. Attention has recently been shifting to SMEs, which can help accelerate the energy transition. By combining a literature review with an explorative multiple case study of 20 SMEs in the Dutch sustainable energy sector, this article identified barriers and drivers for technology commercialization by SMEs. A country-specific barrier is the large consumption of natural gas by Dutch households, which strongly inhibits the successful scale-up of new technologies. The study found several managerial, financial, technological and policy-related barriers and drivers which affect technology commercialization of sustainable energy technologies by SMEs. These barriers and drivers were further assessed in an actor-based analysis, which suggests that the various barriers and drivers arise from the interactions between policy makers, industry partners and end-users. The paper also discusses the policy implications of the barriers and drivers identified, and outlines several challenges for future research.

Keywords: Sustainability transition; SMEs; Technology commercialization; Barriers; Drivers (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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DOI: 10.1016/j.rser.2019.05.050

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