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The role of regional institutional entrepreneurs in the emergence of clusters in nanotechnologies


  • Mangematin, V.
  • Rip, A.
  • Delemarle, A.
  • Robinson, D.K.R.


In the case of new technologies like nanotechnology, institutional entrepreneurs appear who have to act at different levels (organizational, regional, national) at the same time. We reconstruct, in some detail, the history of two cases, in Grenoble and in Twente/Netherlands. An intriguing finding is that institutional entrepreneurs build their environment before changing their institution. They first mobilize European support to convince local and national levels before actual cluster building occurs. Only later will there be reactions against any de-institutionalisation caused at the base location. The Dutch case shows another notable finding: when mobilizing support the entrepreneur will have to agree to further conditions, and then ends up in a different situation (a broad national consortium) than originally envisaged (the final cluster involved a collaboration of Twente with two other centres). In general, an institutional entrepreneur attempts to create momentum, and when this is achieved, he has to follow rather than lead it.

Suggested Citation

  • Mangematin, V. & Rip, A. & Delemarle, A. & Robinson, D.K.R., 2005. "The role of regional institutional entrepreneurs in the emergence of clusters in nanotechnologies," Working Papers 200515, Grenoble Applied Economics Laboratory (GAEL).
  • Handle: RePEc:gbl:wpaper:200515

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Walter Powell & Kenneth Koput & James Bowie & Laurel Smith-Doerr, 2002. "The Spatial Clustering of Science and Capital: Accounting for Biotech Firm-Venture Capital Relationships," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(3), pages 291-305.
    2. Cooke, Philip, 2002. "Regional science policy and the growth of knowledge megacentres in bioscience clusters," ERSA conference papers ersa02p503, European Regional Science Association.
    3. Rip, Arie, 2002. "Regional Innovation Systems and the Advent of Strategic Science," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 27(1), pages 123-131, January.
    4. Garud, Raghu & Karnoe, Peter, 2003. "Bricolage versus breakthrough: distributed and embedded agency in technology entrepreneurship," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 277-300, February.
    5. Harald Bathelt & Andersand Malmberg & Peter Maskell, 2002. "Clusters and Knowledge Local Buzz, Global Pipelines and the Process of Knowledge Creation," DRUID Working Papers 02-12, DRUID, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy/Aalborg University, Department of Business Studies.
    6. Zucker, Lynne G & Darby, Michael R & Brewer, Marilynn B, 1998. "Intellectual Human Capital and the Birth of U.S. Biotechnology Enterprises," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(1), pages 290-306, March.
    7. Agrawal, Ajay & Cockburn, Iain, 2003. "The anchor tenant hypothesis: exploring the role of large, local, R&D-intensive firms in regional innovation systems," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 21(9), pages 1227-1253, November.
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    Cited by:

    1. Robinson, Douglas K.R. & Rip, Arie & Mangematin, Vincent, 2007. "Technological agglomeration and the emergence of clusters and networks in nanotechnology," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(6), pages 871-879, July.

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    JEL classification:

    • M13 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration - - - New Firms; Startups

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