Over the last three decades, supporting the creation of new businesses has become a major issue all over the world. Support programmes have been launched at national or regional levels to support the founders of young companies. Entrepreneurial ecosystems have emerged around key players such as incubators. The structuration and institutionalisation of this field have been made easier by national or international networks such as the National Business Incubation Association.
Over this period, this theme has become a research trend in the field of entrepreneurship. Two complementary trains of thought dominate. The first takes an economic stance, focusing in particular on the role of location in entrepreneurial dynamics and the impact of entrepreneurial policies (Audretsch, Grilo and Thurik, 2007). What are the best entrepreneurial policies? How can programmes that support business creation be evaluated? Two evaluation models have been developed to answer these questions (Storey, 2000).
The second train of thought focuses on the key players in support and the different types of support. What determines the performances of incubators? Many works have played a role in better understanding the performances of incubators (Mian, 1997; Hakett and Dilts, 2004).
There are two aims for this special issue. The first is to present a review of current research on entrepreneurial support, and how this theme has become, in the last 30 years, a major research field in entrepreneurship. What theories have been put forward? What are the future perspectives for research?
The second aim is to offer readers a cross-referencing of entrepreneurial support, taking into account geographical and cultural specificities. The question of entrepreneurial support is effectively raised differently from one country and culture to another. In this case, can we – or should we – give a universalist reading of entrepreneurial support? On the contrary, is support only contextualised? What tools and methods should be focused on?
Suitable topics include but are not limited to:
- Skill management and support
- Evaluating support
- Networks and support
- Learning and support
- Funding support
- Innovation and support
- Public policy and support
- Managing incubators
- Genre and support
Deadline for papers: 15 March, 2013
Papers returned to authors: 15 June, 2013
Deadline for revised versions: 15 September, 2013