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Vol 1 - Issue 1

Technology and Innovation

List of Articles

Venture Capital as A Facilitator of High Tech Innovation in Clusters: The Case of French “Pôles de Compétitivité”
Hélène Perrin-Boulonne

Silicon Valley and Route 128 are the most frequently presented cases when we talk about clusters and technological innovation. The literature on the success of these areas is extensive, but little emphasis is placed on this question in French literature on clusters and the specific case of the pôles de compétitivité. To exist, innovate and grow, entrepreneurs need access to finance. The venture capital in all its forms plays a major role in financing innovative entrepreneurship. The presence of venture capitalists and innovative entrepreneurs is not enough; a market is necessary to foster the matching between the demand of capitals from start-ups and the supply of capital by venture capitalists. We establish a typology of different situations in financing innovative companies in the territories. We will look at the different types of existing public policies to support the capital financing of innovative technology companies. We will examine in an explanatory work the presence of venture capital in the French competitiveness clusters, and show the need for further research in this field.

The Development of French Start-Ups: A Problem of Funding?
Sophie Pommet, Jean-François Sattin

The aim of this paper is both to present the different financing tools available for the creation and development of start-ups and to discuss their relative efficiency for their. In France, the start-ups can have access to a large set of private and public funding in order to finance their seed and early stage developments. We present the different financial levers and we show that the growth of the start-ups is limited by what it is called a ‘financing gap’. Finally, we show that this financing gap could be filled, in part, thanks to new means of financing that are rapidly emerging.

The Identity of Start-Up Founder and Hi-Tech Entrepreneur Coaching
Gérard A. Kokou Dokou

A start-up is an innovating company deeply rooted in technologies and with high market prospects. In such structure, the entrepreneur is often focused on his core business, making use of his experiences, knowledge and skills. Support is all the more needed as further skills are necessary to start and to take off in a complex business environment. The founder’s operating logics are thus so deeply affected by his needs to be, to know and to be able to that they recreate the essence of his entrepreneurial identity. These three requirements, which the coach must all include in his advising strategy, underpin the founder’s empowerment according to resource and application theories. In order to test this observation, a qualitative survey has been carried out in the form of group interview (focus group), bringing together 8 start-up founders. The debates have been recorded and transcribed in their entirety. The achieved corpus is then meticulously studied through semantic and structural analytical methods. The interpretative approach leads to asserting the extent of the components of entrepreneurial identity of the start-up founder. Such identity components turn out to be instruments for the coach of technology entrepreneur.

The Importance of Entrepreneurial Creativity
Marc Jaillot

Creativity is a new field of research compared to innovation and the final boundaries of creativity have not yet been clearly defined. Creativity and innovation have often been jointly used to describe product innovation through which companies obtain a “star” product as the single best idea. However, they haven’t been much used to study successful combinations of a multitude of ideas that result in entrepreneurial success. Nevertheless, this creative process can be hard to copy and can therefore be a competitive advantage. The purpose of this article is to explore the concept of entrepreneurial creativity to explain and describe its place and importance in small companies. We will first describe the concept of entrepreneurial creativity in a small business context. Then we’ll examine features that highlight the importance of creativity for entrepreneurs of small companies. The third part will rely on a complementary qualitative empirical research to provide insights and discuss the boundaries of entrepreneurial creativity.

Innovative Milieu and Innovative Entrepreneurship
Corinne Tanguy, Dimitri Uzunidis

A lot of research is being developed today around the relationship between the entrepreneur and their territory, with the underlying assumption of a more or less easy access to skills, knowledge, funding and infrastructure within a territory. The innovative milieu, defined as a set of actors (companies, institutions, etc.) located and anchored in a territory in which the interactions are developed multilaterally, constitute an environment which favours the appearance of various forms of innovation and the emergence of new companies. However the role of the entrepreneur is fundamental in exploiting the opportunities and resources offered by an innovative milieu. Indeed, he is the person who takes advantage of the territory’s resources and contributes to the creation of new technologies and jobs through networks and proximities that he is able to exploit. In France, as we will see, the policy of clusters is presented as an incentive policy for collaboration and innovation, and conducive to innovative entrepreneurship.

Innovation Strategies and Entrepreneurial Dynamics

Innovation, in the industrial capitalism, is based on two pillars: mastering technology and a high level of entrepreneurship. Innovation aims to make profitable the capital invested by the entrepreneur. This link is analysed at three levels, macro (nation), meso (industrial groups, sectors, regions) and microeconomic (entrepreneurial). The evolution of the industrial capitalism may be broken down, according the major inventions, into three generations (1775-1875-1975). Each generation is divided into two stages. The extensive stage covers the transfer of inventions into techniques and production tools; the intensive stage relates to the development of “modern” consumer goods and services. The transition to the intensive stage is facilitated by ideologies promoting technical progress and new social order, in the name of modernity. Then, the entrepreneurship is idealised, for facilitating that transition. However, the typologies of entrepreneurs relativise their actual contribution to the transition towards a new industrial order, by the way of individual strategies aiming at highly variable degrees of innovation. This question is ultimately examined in terms of industrial policies: general policy of industrial and financial corporations, public policy, regional policies of technological and entrepreneurial development.