Seminar on Transnational Learnings:
The Accelerator’s Effect on the Startup Ecosystem
On Thursday Jan 28th 2016 various academics, policy makers, practitioners and accelerator managers from around the world came together at Imperial College London to discuss the Accelerator’s effect on the Start-up ecosystem. They attempted to make headway on this question by exploring the variety of accelerators and the treatment effect of a programme in regional entrepreneurial ecosystems. Based on empirical data (quantitative and qualitative), audience input and the panel discussion, some of the most interesting findings were that
- Business accelerators are an increasingly important institutional form in the entrepreneurial ecosystem with clear evidence of positive regional spill-overs i.e. accelerators do not appear to crowd out private sector.
- The explosion of various types of accelerators needs to be perceived as experiments in finding the right way to accelerate new ventures.
- Impact and success metrics of accelerators are hard to define as there is still a lot of uncertainty over the strategic objectives and business models of such programmes
- Each accelerator manager need to bear in mind the responsibility of accelerators towards entrepreneurs
Growth Equals Success?
ERC has supported the establishment of a number of ‘communities of interest’ including one led by the Centre for Enterprise at Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU) focused on Business Growth.
On February 24th, ERC Research Fellow, Dr. Oksana Koryak attended a Small Business Policy Forum “Growth equals success?” held by MMU at the House of Commons.
The Shadow Minister for Business Innovation and Skills gave a keynote address and there were contributions from businesses and from the Federation of Small Businesses.
The research team from MMU shared highlights from recent research with business leaders in the North West of England. The research shed light on alternative modes of growth for example firms using flexible forms of organization and temporary alliances to undertake large projects. The research also highlighted the multi-faceted nature of business owners’ growth aspirations that go beyond just financial sustainability and focus on job creation in local communities, developing reputation for outstanding quality and customer experience etc.
Overall, the presented evidence reinforced the idea that there are many ways of generating new economic activity that do not necessarily fit the conventional high growth firm model.