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The Role of Knowledge

  • Michael Fritsch
  • Michael Wyrwich
Chapter
Part of the International Studies in Entrepreneurship book series (ISEN, volume 40)

Abstract

We investigate the role played by an entrepreneurship culture and the historical knowledge base of a region in current levels of new business formation in innovative industries. The analysis is for German regions and covers the years 1907–2016. We find a pronounced positive relationship between high levels of historical self-employment in science-based industries and new business formation in innovative industries today. This long-term legacy effect of an entrepreneurial tradition indicates the prevalence of a regional culture of entrepreneurship. Moreover, local presence and geographic proximity to a technical university founded before the year 1900 is positively related to the level of innovative start-ups more than a century later. The results show that a considerable part of the knowledge that constitutes an important source of entrepreneurial opportunities is deeply rooted in history. We draw conclusions for policy and for further research.

Keywords

Innovative start-ups Universities Regional knowledge Regional cultures of entrepreneurship 

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael Fritsch
    • 1
  • Michael Wyrwich
    • 2
  1. 1.Friedrich Schiller University JenaJenaGermany
  2. 2.University of GroningenGroningenThe Netherlands

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