Academic entrepreneurship, patents, and spin-offs: critical issues and lessons for Europe
The paper proposes a definition of “academic entrepreneur” which draws from draws from the economics, history, and sociology of science. Academic entrepreneurs are scientists with a brilliant scientific record, who build their careers through discipline-building, the creation and of new labs and teams, and an appetite for the economic resources necessary to pursue those goals. Long-standing institutional features of national university systems explain to what extent commercial activities may or may not help academic entrepreneurs to progress in their careers. European policies for technology transfer should address these features, rather than aiming straight at university patenting and firm creation.
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