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A typology of technology transfer ecosystems: how structure affects interactions at the science–market divide

Matthew Good (), Mirjam Knockaert () and Birthe Soppe ()
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Matthew Good: University of Oslo
Mirjam Knockaert: University of Ghent
Birthe Soppe: University of Oslo

The Journal of Technology Transfer, 2020, vol. 45, issue 5, No 5, 1405-1431

Abstract: Abstract Alongside the increased efforts of universities to commercialize academic science, technology transfer (TT) ecosystems have developed within or close to research universities across the world. Such ecosystems are composed of various organizational entities, such as science parks, incubators, and TT offices. In this paper, we study the organizational structure of TT ecosystems in academia and develop a typology of these ecosystems. Furthermore, we assess how the organizational structure of TT ecosystems affects within-ecosystem interactions. Taking a qualitative, comparative case study approach of eight different universities in Scandinavia, we investigate several elements of organizational structure, including ownership, governance, size, internal structure, and physical location. Based on our analysis, we develop a typology consisting of three types of ecosystems, the introverted, externalized and allied TT ecosystems, and find that within-ecosystem interactions differ significantly across the three types, providing important implications for an ecosystem’s ability to balance both science and market orientation. We discuss the contributions of our findings for theory and practice and identify avenues for future research.

Keywords: Technology transfer; Ecosystems; Organizational structure; Interaction; Research commercialization; Academic entrepreneurship (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O32 L2 L3 M13 P00 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1007/s10961-019-09745-w

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The Journal of Technology Transfer is currently edited by Albert N. Link, Donald S. Siegel, Barry Bozeman and Simon Mosey

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