The Development of High-Technology Firms: An Entrepreneurship in Networks Approach


Kirwan, Paul (2008) The Development of High-Technology Firms: An Entrepreneurship in Networks Approach. In: 16th Annual High Technology Small Firms Conference, HTSF 2008, 21-23 May 2008, Enschede, The Netherlands.

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Abstract:From social network theory, the entrepreneurial process involves accumulating scarce resources, building reputation, finding partners and attracting clients, knowledge, suppliers, etc. from the environment (Autio, Yli-Renko & Salonen, 1997; Brush, Greene & Hart, 2001; O’Farrell & Hitchens, 1998; Birley & Cromie, 1988). This practice among start-up firms has been widely reported and evidenced in entrepreneurship literature. The value of networks as an integral part of entrepreneurial success is widely acknowledged; however, there is considerable confusion and disagreement as to the role particular network characteristics play in the performance of emerging firms (Johannisson, 2000; Rowley et al., 2000) and especially as to what network characteristics are most advantageous in a firm’s early stages (Hite and Hesterly, 2001). The aim of this paper is to examine to what extent the characteristics of structural and relational patterns of networks explain differences in performance?
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