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The triple helix: science, technology and the entrepreneurial spirit

Henry Etzkowitz (Human Sciences Technology Advanced Research Institute (H‐STAR), Stanford University, Palo Alto, California, USA)

Journal of Knowledge-based Innovation in China

ISSN: 1756-1418

Article publication date: 5 July 2011




The purpose of this paper is to outline the triple‐helix model of university‐industry‐government interactions and its contribution to entrepreneurship, and economic and social development.


This paper draws upon international case studies and interviews to delineate the development of the triple‐helix model and entrepreneurship.


Relationships freely entered into among universities, industry, and government to translate scientific research into economic and social development, go beyond the received practices of both capitalism and socialism. Industry and government have been the two‐leading spheres of modern society since the eighteenth century. The university plays an enhanced role in creating new platforms for economic and social development in the transition to a knowledge‐based society. This new role for the university, sometimes called the “third mission” does not take place in isolation. Fundamental change at the organizational and institutional levels within and between university, industry, and government constitute a new innovation environment, based on science, technology, and a culture of entrepreneurial initiative.


The paper shows the stages and phases of development of the triple‐helix interactions.



Etzkowitz, H. (2011), "The triple helix: science, technology and the entrepreneurial spirit", Journal of Knowledge-based Innovation in China, Vol. 3 No. 2, pp. 76-90.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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