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How do entrepreneurs’ characteristics influence the benefits from the various elements of a business incubator?

Christian Kjær Monsson (Roskilde University, Roskilde, Denmark)
Søren Berg Jørgensen (Roskilde University, Roskilde, Denmark)

Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development

ISSN: 1462-6004

Article publication date: 15 February 2016




The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate empirically that differences in characteristics of entrepreneurs result in benefits from different elements of a regional incubator programme.


The authors use mixed methods consisting of in-depth interviews and a survey of 100 incubatees in order to study entrepreneurs within a specific incubator programme called the Growth Factories located in Region Zealand, Denmark.


The authors find that there are significant differences in the perceived benefit of various business incubator elements for incubatees depending on their entrepreneurial characteristics.

Research limitations/implications

Future studies are particularly important in order to learn which elements provide the different kinds of entrepreneurs with a critical factor in determining their success or failure.


The conclusions have importance for regional government and development managers aiming at designing new business incubators. The authors suggest that in order to enhance the effect of incubator programmes they must be tailor-made to the individual entrepreneur.


Previous studies have either tended to treat incubator programmes as a uniform entity, where all entrepreneurs receive the same service, or they have treated all entrepreneurs as a uniform group, even though it is well known that entrepreneurs vary considerably in their characteristics. This paper overcomes the gap.



The authors are grateful from the support from the CBIT department and all the comments from the DOME course: Publish or Perish. The research is partly funded by Væksthus Sjælland and Vækstforum Sjælland, although neither have had a role in the research design or conclusions of the paper.


Monsson, C.K. and Jørgensen, S.B. (2016), "How do entrepreneurs’ characteristics influence the benefits from the various elements of a business incubator?", Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, Vol. 23 No. 1, pp. 224-239.



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