Entrepreneurial ecosystem research: present debates and future directions

  • Angelo CavalloEmail author
  • Antonio Ghezzi
  • Raffaello Balocco


The purpose of this article is to review the emerging research on entrepreneurial ecosystem and to guide future research into this promising area. The study presents a critical review on the entrepreneurial ecosystem, starting from its very definition and antecedents. Combining prior research with building on the main concepts that constitute an entrepreneurial ecosystem, we have developed an original set of guidelines that can help scholars and practitioners seeking an answer to the following pressing question: “How can we gain a comprehensive understanding of an entrepreneurial ecosystem?”. We will then discuss the opportunities for expanding our current knowledge on entrepreneurial ecosystems and describe the current debates and directions for future research. Lastly, we will provide guidelines that policymakers may take into consideration when designing and issuing support measures to promote entrepreneurship in their local ecosystems.


Entrepreneurial ecosystem Entrepreneurship New ventures System 



We would like to thank the Editor in Chief and the anonymous Reviewers, who helped significantly enhancing the study’s contributions. We are also immensely grateful to Per Davidsson, Dean A. Shepherd, Jasmina Berbegal-Mirabent and Stephen Cox for sharing their knowledge and experience with us during the course of this research. Any errors remain our own.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Angelo Cavallo
    • 1
    Email author
  • Antonio Ghezzi
    • 1
  • Raffaello Balocco
    • 1
  1. 1.Politecnico di Milano, Department of Management, Economics and Industrial EngineeringMilanItaly

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