Technology business incubators (TBIs) form an indispensable part of an entrepreneurial ecosystem for the promotion of tech start-ups across the global economy. However, they have evolved in varied forms over a period of time, in terms of typologies, sponsors and stakeholders, goals and objectives, functions and services offered, process of incubation support provided through hard and soft infrastructure, outcomes and achievements and even in terms of theoretical bases. The purpose of this paper, therefore, is to review the extant literature on TBIs to arrive at a framework that explains how TBIs contribute to start-up generation.
This paper reviews extant empirical literature for a systematic evaluation to throw light on the various dimensions of TBIs: typology, goals and objectives, functions and services, process and provision of incubation support, outcomes and achievements. Further, after critically reviewing some of the theoretical propositions, it develops a conceptual framework combining pre-incubation, incubation and post-incubation processes of TBIs.
Based on literature understanding and some of the key theoretical constructs, a conceptual framework is developed comprising pre-incubation, incubation and post-incubation stages of start-up formation and graduation. The paper also identifies some prospective areas for future research.
Any empirical research on technology business incubation must focus on pre-incubation and post-incubation processes as much as on the incubation process, to derive meaningful implications and enhance the productivity of TBIs.
The conceptual framework derived out of the systematic literature review will enable further research and exploration of micro-aspects of pre-incubation, incubation and post-incubation phases across multiple dimensions.
This paper forms part of the Research Project Report titled, “Technology Business Incubators in India: an Exploratory Study on their contribution to National R&D Efforts” sponsored by National Science and Technology Management Information System (NSTMIS), Department of Science and Technology, Government of India, New Delhi.
Mungila Hillemane, B.S., Satyanarayana, K. and Chandrashekar, D. (2019), "Technology business incubation for start-up generation: A literature review toward a conceptual framework", International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research, Vol. 25 No. 7, pp. 1471-1493. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJEBR-02-2019-0087
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