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Venture creation programs: bridging entrepreneurship education and technology transfer

Martin Lackéus (Technology Management and Economics, Division of Management of Organizational Renewal and Entrepreneurship, Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden)
Karen Williams Middleton (Technology Management and Economics, Division of Management of Organizational Renewal and Entrepreneurship, Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden)

Education + Training

ISSN: 0040-0912

Article publication date: 9 February 2015

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore how university-based entrepreneurship programs, incorporating real-life venture creation into educational design and delivery, can bridge the gap between entrepreneurship education and technology transfer within the university environment.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on a literature review and snowball sampling over a two-year period, 18 entrepreneurship education programs were identified as applying a venture creation approach. Ten of these programs were selected for case study, including direct interviews and participatory observation during a two-day workshop. Empirical findings were iteratively related to theory within entrepreneurship education and technology transfer.

Findings

The paper identifies the bridging capabilities of venture creation programs (VCP) across five core themes, illustrating the potential benefits of closer collaboration between entrepreneurship education and technology transfer in a university environment.

Research limitations/implications

A definition for “VCP” is tested empirically. These programs are shown to be sophisticated laboratory environments, allowing for clinical research towards the understanding of entrepreneurship and technology transfer processes.

Practical implications

Findings identify practical benefits of combining entrepreneurship education and technology transfer activities, such as increased value creation through not only new firms, but also an entrepreneurially equipped graduate population. VCPs allow for “spin-through” of innovative ideas in the university environment, while simultaneously contributing to entrepreneurial learning.

Originality/value

This paper presents findings from the first multiple case study into entrepreneurship education specifically designed to develop real-life venture as part of the core curriculum. Findings provide basis for investigating the value of integrating entrepreneurship education and technology transfer at the university.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to acknowledge their colleagues at MORE who have helped facilitate data collection during the ELF conference (June 2012), in particular Dr Mats Lundqvist. The authors would also like to thank the growing network of VCP faculty for their availability and support in data collection.

Citation

Lackéus, M. and Williams Middleton, K. (2015), "Venture creation programs: bridging entrepreneurship education and technology transfer", Education + Training, Vol. 57 No. 1, pp. 48-73. https://doi.org/10.1108/ET-02-2013-0013

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited