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Location Attributes and Start-ups in Knowledge-Intensive Business Services


  • Martin Andersson
  • Karin Hellerstedt


This paper examines start-ups in knowledge-intensive business services (KIBS) across Swedish regions by individuals with a formally recognized capacity to produce and develop advanced business services. The empirical analysis focuses on whether their involvement in entrepreneurship may be explained by location attributes. As much as 75 percent of the KIBS founders have prior work experience from business services, suggesting that KIBS start-ups are more frequent in regions where the KIBS sector is already large. Controlling for the stock of potential entrepreneurs and the stock of KIBS firms, it is shown that variables reflecting both supply-side conditions and market size influence KIBS start-up activity. Results are consistent with the hypothesis that KIBS entrepreneurship in a region is stimulated by the simultaneous presence of (i) knowledge resources conducive for the generation and diffusion of knowledge and ideas upon which new firms can be established and (ii) a large market.

Suggested Citation

  • Martin Andersson & Karin Hellerstedt, 2009. "Location Attributes and Start-ups in Knowledge-Intensive Business Services," Industry and Innovation, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(1), pages 103-121.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:indinn:v:16:y:2009:i:1:p:103-121 DOI: 10.1080/13662710902728126

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    Cited by:

    1. Chee-Yang Fong & Keng-Boon Ooi & Boon-In Tan & Voon-Hsien Lee & Alain Yee-Loong Chong, 2011. "HRM practices and knowledge sharing: an empirical study," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 32(5/6), pages 704-723, August.
    2. Tobias Scholl & Thomas Brenner & Martin Wendel, 2016. "Evolving localization patterns of company foundationsEvidence from the German MST-industry," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 26(5), pages 1067-1087, December.
    3. Shaoming Cheng & Huaqun Li, 2012. "New firm formation facing cultural and racial diversity," Papers in Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 91(4), pages 759-774, November.
    4. Michael Wyrwich, 2011. "Knowledge intensive Entrepreneurship across regions: Makes being a new industry a difference?," ERSA conference papers ersa11p1711, European Regional Science Association.
    5. Urban Gråsjö & Charlie Karlsson, 2014. "Accessibility: an underused analytical and empirical tool in spatial economics," Chapters,in: Accessibility and Spatial Interaction, chapter 11, pages 211-236 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    6. Belal Fallah & Mark D. Partridge & Dan S. Rickman, 2014. "Geography and High-Tech Employment Growth in US Counties," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 14(4), pages 683-720.
    7. Johan Klaesson & Therese Norman, 2015. "Market potential and the employment growth of knowledge-intensive services: comparing different geographical resolutions," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer;Western Regional Science Association, vol. 55(1), pages 157-185, October.
    8. Kent Eliasson & Hans Westlund, 2013. "Attributes influencing self-employment propensity in urban and rural Sweden," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer;Western Regional Science Association, vol. 50(2), pages 479-514, April.
    9. Mercedes Rodriguez & José Antonio Camacho, 2011. "The Regional distribution of Knowledge-Intensive Business Services in Europe: a spatial approach," ERSA conference papers ersa10p277, European Regional Science Association.
    10. Pontus Braunerhjelm & Ding Ding & Per Thulin, 2016. "Labour as a knowledge carrier: how increased mobility influences entrepreneurship," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 41(6), pages 1308-1326, December.
    11. Olga V. Kotomina, 2015. "Spatial Dimension of Knowledge Intensive Business Services in Russia," HSE Working papers WP BRP 50/STI/2015, National Research University Higher School of Economics.
    12. Sam Tavassoli & Viroj Jienwatcharamongkhol, 2016. "Survival of entrepreneurial firms: the role of agglomeration externalities," Entrepreneurship & Regional Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 28(9-10), pages 746-767, October.
    13. Dan Rickman & Belal Fallah & Mark Partridge, 2011. "Geographic Determinants of Hi-Tech Employment Growth in U.S. Counties," ERSA conference papers ersa11p518, European Regional Science Association.
    14. Martinsson, Gustav, 2008. "The Impact of Firm Collateral on Knowledge Intensive Consulting Firms," Working Paper Series in Economics and Institutions of Innovation 135, Royal Institute of Technology, CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies.
    15. repec:elg:eechap:14395_27 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. repec:elg:eechap:14395_20 is not listed on IDEAS
    17. Andersson, Martin & Baltzopoulos, Apostolos & Lööf, Hans, 2012. "R&D strategies and entrepreneurial spawning," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 54-68.
    18. Baltzopoulos, Apostolos, 2009. "The Firm and the Region as Breeding Grounds for Entrepreneurs," Working Paper Series in Economics and Institutions of Innovation 189, Royal Institute of Technology, CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies.
    19. Shaoming Cheng & Huaqun Li, 2011. "Spatially Varying Relationships of New Firm Formation in the United States," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 45(6), pages 773-789.
    20. Ana Condeço-Melhorado & Aura Reggiani & Javier Gutiérrez (ed.), 2014. "Accessibility and Spatial Interaction," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 15267.
    21. Charlie Karlsson, 2012. "Entrepreneurship, social capital, governance and regional economic development: an introduction," Chapters,in: Entrepreneurship, Social Capital and Governance, chapter 1, pages 1-26 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    22. Niccolò Ghio & Massimiliano Guerini & Erik Lehmann & Cristina Rossi-Lamastra, 2015. "The emergence of the knowledge spillover theory of entrepreneurship," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 44(1), pages 1-18, January.

    More about this item


    Knowledge-intensive business services; KIBS; spillovers; start-ups; entrepreneurship; market size;

    JEL classification:

    • L26 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Entrepreneurship
    • L84 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Personal, Professional, and Business Services
    • R12 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; Interregional Trade (economic geography)


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