Achieving stable and sustainable economic growth is one of the main goals of local communities and national governments. Entrepreneurship has been recognised by researchers and scholars as a relevant catalyst of economic development and growth. Entrepreneurial societies are not only a consequence of economic freedom and private initiative; government programmes and public policies can also be crucial means for building local and national entrepreneurial ecosystems.
Today there is a vast array of public policies that can be implemented by different levels of government in order to support and foster entrepreneurship and thus stimulate economic growth. For example, it has been demonstrated that public programmes and policies concerning education, the finance market, public procurement, administrative and tax burdens, the protection of knowledge and innovation and the efficiency of the labour market can influence the number, quality, development and success of entrepreneurial ventures.
Academic literature offers mainly comparative analyses of the policies adopted by different countries or by different levels of government. More research is required by entrepreneurship and political science scholars in order to contribute to the clarification of crucial issues concerning public policies on entrepreneurship, and in particular to investigate: (1) how to create innovative policies, (2) how to evaluate them, (3) how to diffuse best practices, and (4) how to select the most appropriate policy and adapt it to a specific context.
This special issue is focused on interdisciplinary open questions concerning the public commitment and actions undertaken by governmental institutions with the aim of fostering entrepreneurship and achieving sustainable economic growth.
Quantitative as well qualitative papers will be considered and reviewed. The issue will carry revised and substantially extended versions of selected papers presented at the International Symposium on Entrepreneurship and Innovation (ISEI 2012) to be held in Venice, Italy, 23-25 May, 2012, but we also strongly encourage researchers unable to participate in the conference to submit papers for this call.
Suitable topics include but are not limited to:
- Adoption and adaptation of public policies. Programmes and incentives that have been recognised as successful and are considered as best practices in a particular country are often used in other geographical contexts. This strategy requires a process of adaptation that could be investigated in order to understand enablers and barriers. How can policies be transferred from one context to another?
- Policies for the creation of an entrepreneurial ecosystem. Which entrepreneurial ecosystems and populations of firms are sources of economic growth? Is there a right entrepreneurial rate that can guarantee growth and regional development? How can policies catalyse the emergence or creation of an entrepreneurial ecosystem?
- Synergic effects of actions promoted by different levels of government. How can local, regional, national and super-national programmes and initiatives reinforce each other, without overlapping or wasting resources? Which is the most appropriate level of government that can really impact entrepreneurship and economic growth?
- Selective or broad policies? Policies to encourage entrepreneurship and small business can be classified as selective (e.g. tax breaks, subsidies or incentives for particular targeted groups of companies or industries) or broad (i.e. they promote an entrepreneur-friendly environment through fiscal policies, rules of the labour market, competition, business regulations, startup costs, capital access, etc.). What are the effects of these policies? Why do governments adopt them?
- Policies for fostering entrepreneurship among specific groups (e.g. ethnic and immigrant minorities, female population, young population).
- Policies and the entrepreneurial spirit of a national/regional community. How does political and cultural commitment stimulate the entrepreneurial spirit of a regional community or a country?
- Evaluating the effectiveness of public policies. How, why and by whom can outcomes and externalities of public initiatives be assessed and evaluated? What are the market imperfections created by public policies? Are the criteria adopted by researchers to evaluate public programmes adequate? How can these criteria be standardised and shared?
- Policies regarding intellectual property (and their impact on technology transfer and academic entrepreneurship).
- The creation of new public policies. How can new public policies to foster entrepreneurship be developed, shaped and experimented with? How can policy makers really be more innovative?
- The variety of public policies. Policies for promoting a knowledge- based and entrepreneurial society. Policies for supporting and stimulating the creation of new ventures. Policies for the growth of small ventures. Policies for supporting high potential businesses.
- Policies and programmes for entrepreneurship education. Policies for stimulating and disseminating innovative teaching methods and pedagogies. Initiatives for leveraging technology for education. Impact of the introduction of entrepreneurship education at all levels (from primary school to lifelong learning). How can a consistent and adequate level of funding for entrepreneurship education programmes be guaranteed?
- Selecting the right policies. How can the most appropriate policy be selected from academic suggestions and policy collections? Which criteria should be used? Governments are requested to implement policies with less resources from the past, with the aim of obtaining better results; how can this process of selection can be optimised? What are the roles of academia, NGOs, foundations and super-national institutions in collecting, analysing and suggesting the most appropriate policies?
Submission deadline: 30 September 2012