Academic Entrepreneurship: A Case Study

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

Purpose – To explore, describe and explain what processes are at work in facilitating or inhibiting entrepreneurship amongst academics. Design/methodology/approach – A corporate entrepreneurship perspective is used to construct a framework for understanding academic entrepreneurship at different ontological levels within a university context. A single case study method is adopted involving a purposeful sampling strategy of academic entrepreneurs within one university. A sense-making approach investigated the practice of entrepreneurship by academics. Findings – Develops a tentative framework for bounding the phenomenon of academic entrepreneurship and presents a model that attempts to identify key elements of academic entrepreneurship in terms of different modes of knowledge production and value-creating processes. Research limitations/implications – The single case setting limits the applicability of the research to other institutions. However, the framework and model that are developed and the overall approach are valuable contributions to an important, emerging research area. The academic entrepreneurship framework provides a series of logically related conceptual bins that form a basis for future research. The model of academic entrepreneurship attempts to explain how academics produce different types of knowledge. Practical implications – The paper suggests that academic entrepreneurs have a complex set of relationships with their parent disciplines and the university setting within which they operate. The outcomes indicate that orthodox models of entrepreneurship are not always meaningful as regards understanding what academic entrepreneurs actually do in practice. Originality/value – The paper investigates a little-understood phenomenon and one that is increasingly important for UK policy makers and university administrators. The academic entrepreneurship framework and model is an original and valuable contribution to the study of this phenomenon.
LanguageEnglish
Pages144-164
JournalInternational Journal of Entrepreneurship Behaviour and Research
Volume12
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2006

Fingerprint

Academic entrepreneurship
Entrepreneurs
Entrepreneurship
Knowledge production
Case study method
Politicians
Sampling
Design methodology
Corporate entrepreneurship
Sensemaking

Cite this

@article{d622ba3de9ff42f08dbb9fe5d141cf76,
title = "Academic Entrepreneurship: A Case Study",
abstract = "Purpose – To explore, describe and explain what processes are at work in facilitating or inhibiting entrepreneurship amongst academics. Design/methodology/approach – A corporate entrepreneurship perspective is used to construct a framework for understanding academic entrepreneurship at different ontological levels within a university context. A single case study method is adopted involving a purposeful sampling strategy of academic entrepreneurs within one university. A sense-making approach investigated the practice of entrepreneurship by academics. Findings – Develops a tentative framework for bounding the phenomenon of academic entrepreneurship and presents a model that attempts to identify key elements of academic entrepreneurship in terms of different modes of knowledge production and value-creating processes. Research limitations/implications – The single case setting limits the applicability of the research to other institutions. However, the framework and model that are developed and the overall approach are valuable contributions to an important, emerging research area. The academic entrepreneurship framework provides a series of logically related conceptual bins that form a basis for future research. The model of academic entrepreneurship attempts to explain how academics produce different types of knowledge. Practical implications – The paper suggests that academic entrepreneurs have a complex set of relationships with their parent disciplines and the university setting within which they operate. The outcomes indicate that orthodox models of entrepreneurship are not always meaningful as regards understanding what academic entrepreneurs actually do in practice. Originality/value – The paper investigates a little-understood phenomenon and one that is increasingly important for UK policy makers and university administrators. The academic entrepreneurship framework and model is an original and valuable contribution to the study of this phenomenon.",
author = "Michael Brennan and Pauric McGowan",
note = "Reference text: Birley, S. (2002), “Universities, academics, and spinout companies: lessons from Imperial”, International Journal of Entrepreneurship Education, Vol. 1 No. 1, pp. 133-53. Blacker, F. (1995), “Knowledge, knowledge work and organizations: an overview and interpretation”, Organisation Studies, Vol. 16 No. 6, pp. 1021-46. Brazeal, D.V. and Herbert, T.T. (1999), “The genesis of entrepreneurship”, Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, Vol. 23 No. 3, pp. 29-45. Brown, J.S. and Duguid, P. (1998), “Organising knowledge”, California Management Review, Vol. 40 No. 3, pp. 90-111. Chrisman, J.J., Hynes, T. and Fraser, S. (1995), “Faculty entrepreneurship and economic development: the case of the University of Calgary”, Journal of Business Venturing, Vol. 10 No. 4, pp. 267-81. Clark, B. (1998), Creating Entrepreneurial Universities: Organisational Pathways of Transformation, Pergamon Press, New York, NY. Cohen, W. and Levinthal, D. (1990), “Absorptive capacity: a new perspective on learning and innovation”, Administrative Science Quarterly, Vol. 35 No. 1, pp. 128-52. Collins, H. (1993), “The structure of knowledge”, Social Research, Vol. 60 No. 1, pp. 95-116. Cook, S.D.N. and Brown, J.S. (1999), “Bridging epistemologies: the generative dance between organisational knowledge and organisational knowing”, Organisation Science, Vol. 10 No. 4, pp. 381-400. Cooper, S. (2000), “Technical entrepreneurship”, in Carter, S. and Jones-Evans, D. (Eds), Enterprise and Small Business, Pearson, Harlow, pp. 220-41. Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1999), “A systems perspective on creativity”, in Henry, J. (Ed.), Creative Management, Sage, London, pp. 11-26. Dess, G.G., Ireland, R.D., Zahra, S.A., Floyd, S.W., Janney, J.J. and Lane, P.J. (2003), “Emerging issues in corporate entrepreneurship”, Journal of Management, Vol. 29 No. 3, pp. 351-78. Dickson, K., Coles, A. and Smith, H. (1998), “Science in the marketplace: the role of the scientific entrepreneur”, in During, W. and Oakey, R. (Eds), New Technology-based Firms in the 1990s, Paul Chapman, London, pp. 27-37. Eisenhardt, K.M. (1989), “Building theories from case study research”, Academy of Management Review, Vol. 14 No. 4, pp. 532-50. Ekvall, G. (2002), “Organisational conditions and levels of creativity”, in Henry, J. and Mayle, D. (Eds), Creative Management, Sage, London, pp. 99-110. Etzkowitz, H. (1983), “Entrepreneurial scientists and entrepreneurial universities in American academic science”, Minerva, Vol. 21, Autumn, pp. 198-233. IJEBR 12,3 162 Etzkowitz, H. (2003a), “The European entrepreneurial university: an alternative to the US model”, Industry and Higher Education, October, pp. 325-35. Etzkowitz, H. (2003b), “Research groups as ‘quasi-firms’: the invention of the entrepreneurial university”, Research Policy, Vol. 32 No. 1, pp. 109-21. Fuller, T. and Moran, P. (2001), “Small enterprises as complex adaptive systems: a methodological question”, Entrepreneurship and Regional Development, Vol. 13 No. 1, pp. 47-63. Gibbons, M., Limoges, C., Nowotny, H., Schwartzman, S., Scott, P. and Trow, M. (1994), The New Production of Knowledge, Sage, London. Guba, E.G. and Lincoln, Y.S. (1994), “Competing paradigms in qualitative research”, in Denzin, N.K. and Lincoln, Y.S. (Eds), Handbook of Qualitative Research, Sage, Thousand Oaks, CA, pp. 105-17. Hitt, M.A., Ireland, R.D., Camp, M. and Sexton, D.L. (2001), “Strategic entrepreneurship: entrepreneurial strategies for wealth creation”, Strategic Management Journal, Vol. 22, pp. 479-91. Hurst, D.K. (1995), Crisis and Renewal: Meeting the Challenge of Organizational Change, Harvard Business Press, Boston, MA. Jones-Evans, D. (1995), “A typology of technology-based entrepreneurs: a model based on previous occupational background”, International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour & Research, Vol. 1 No. 1, pp. 26-47. Kirton, M. (1984), “Adaptors and innovators: why new initiatives get blocked”, Long Range Planning, Vol. 17 No. 2, pp. 137-43. Krackhardt, D. and Hanson, J. (1993), “Informal networks: the company behind the chart”, Harvard Business Review, Vol. 71 No. 4, pp. 104-11. Kuhn, T.S. (1962), The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, IL. Louis, K.S., Blumenthal, D., Gluck, M.E. and Stoto, M.A. (1989), “Entrepreneurs in academe: an exploration of behaviours among life scientists”, Administrative Science Quarterly, Vol. 34 No. 1, pp. 110-31. Louw, L., van Eeden, S.M., Bosch, J.K. and Venter, D.J.L. (2003), “Entrepreneurial traits of undergraduate students at selected South African tertiary institutions”, International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour & Research, Vol. 9 No. 1, pp. 5-26. Lundberg, C.C. (1999), “Finding research agendas: getting started Weick-like”, available at: http://siop.org/tip/backissues/TipOcto99/3Lundberg.htm Lundvall, B. (1992), National Systems of Innovation: Towards a Theory of Innovation and Interactive Learning, Pinter Publishers, London. Martin, J.N.T. (2000), Managing Problems Creatively, The Open University, Milton Keynes. Miles, M.P. and Covin, J.G. (2002), “Exploring the practice of corporate venturing: some common forms and their organisational implications”, Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, Vol. 26 No. 3, pp. 21-40. Nonaka, I. (1994), “A dynamic theory of organisational knowledge creation”, Organisation Science, Vol. 5 No. 1, pp. 14-37. Nonaka, I. and Takeuchi, H. (1995), The Knowledge-creating Company: How Japanese Companies Create the Dynamics of Innovation, Oxford University Press, Oxford. Oakey, R.P. (1995), High-technology New Firms: Variable Barriers to Growth, Paul Chapman, London. OST (2001), Science Enterprise Challenge Guidelines, Office of Science and Technology, London, available at: www.ost.gov.uk/enterprise/knowledge/sec.htm Roberts, E.B. (1991), Entrepreneurs in High Technology: Lessons from MIT and Beyond, Oxford University Press, Oxford. Academic entrepreneurship 163 Samson, K.J. and Gurdon, M.A. (1993), “University scientists as entrepreneurs: a special case of technology transfer and high technology venturing”, Technovation, Vol. 13 No. 2, pp. 63-71. Saxenian, A. (1996), Regional Advantage: Culture and Competition in Silicon Valley and Route 128, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA. Segal, N.S. (1986), “Universities and technological entrepreneurship in Britain: some implications of the Cambridge phenomenon”, Technovation, Vol. 4 No. 3, pp. 189-204. Senge, P. (1990), The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization, Century Business, London. Sharma, P. and Chrisman, J.J. (1999), “Towards a reconciliation of the definitional issues in the field of corporate entrepreneurship”, Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, Vol. 23 No. 3, pp. 11-27. Sharma, S. (1999), “Trespass or symbiosis? Dissolving the boundaries between strategic marketing and strategic management”, Journal of Strategic Marketing, Vol. 7 No. 2, pp. 73-88. Spilling, O.R. (1996), “The entrepreneurial system”, Journal of Business Research, Vol. 36 No. 1, pp. 91-103. Storey, D.J. and Tether, B.S. (1998), “Public policy measures to support new technology-based firms in the European Union”, Research Policy, Vol. 26 No. 9, pp. 1037-57. Tidd, J. and Barnes, S. (1999), “Spin-in or spin-out? Corporate venturing in life sciences”, International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Vol. 1 No. 2, pp. 109-16. Tidd, J., Bessant, J. and Pavitt, K. (2005), Managing Innovation, Wiley, Chichester. Van de Ven, A.H. (1993), “The development of an infrastructure for entrepreneurship”, Journal of Business Venturing, Vol. 8 No. 3, pp. 211-30. Walton, A.P. (2003), “The impact of interpersonal factors on creativity”, International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour & Research, Vol. 9 No. 4, pp. 146-62. Weick, K.E. (1995), Sensemaking in Organisations, Sage, Beverly Hills, CA. Wenger, E. (2000), “Communities of practice and social learning systems”, Organization, Vol. 7 No. 2, pp. 225-46. Yin, R. (1994), Case Study Research, Sage, Beverly Hills, CA. Yin, R. (2003), Case Study Research: Design and Methods, Sage, Thousand Oaks, CA. Zahra, S.A. and Dess, G.G. (2001), “Entrepreneurship as a field of research: encouraging dialogue and debate”, Academy of Management Review, Vol. 26, pp. 8-10. Zhao, F. (2005), “Exploring the synergy between entrepreneurship and innovation”, International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour & Research, Vol. 11 No. 1, pp. 25-41. Further reading Fine, M., Weis, L., Weseen, S. and Wong, L. (2000), “For who? Qualitative research, representation and social responsibilities”, in Denzin, N.K. and Lincoln, Y.S. (Eds), Handbook of Qualitative Research, Sage, Thousand Oaks, CA, pp. 107-32. Stake, R.E. (2000), “Case studies”, in Denzin, N.K. and Lincoln, Y.S. (Eds), Handbook of Qualitative Research, Sage, Thousand Oaks, CA, pp. 435-54. IJEBR 12,3 164 To",
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language = "English",
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Academic Entrepreneurship: A Case Study. / Brennan, Michael; McGowan, Pauric.

Vol. 12, No. 3, 2006, p. 144-164.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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T1 - Academic Entrepreneurship: A Case Study

AU - Brennan, Michael

AU - McGowan, Pauric

N1 - Reference text: Birley, S. (2002), “Universities, academics, and spinout companies: lessons from Imperial”, International Journal of Entrepreneurship Education, Vol. 1 No. 1, pp. 133-53. Blacker, F. (1995), “Knowledge, knowledge work and organizations: an overview and interpretation”, Organisation Studies, Vol. 16 No. 6, pp. 1021-46. Brazeal, D.V. and Herbert, T.T. (1999), “The genesis of entrepreneurship”, Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, Vol. 23 No. 3, pp. 29-45. Brown, J.S. and Duguid, P. (1998), “Organising knowledge”, California Management Review, Vol. 40 No. 3, pp. 90-111. Chrisman, J.J., Hynes, T. and Fraser, S. (1995), “Faculty entrepreneurship and economic development: the case of the University of Calgary”, Journal of Business Venturing, Vol. 10 No. 4, pp. 267-81. Clark, B. (1998), Creating Entrepreneurial Universities: Organisational Pathways of Transformation, Pergamon Press, New York, NY. Cohen, W. and Levinthal, D. (1990), “Absorptive capacity: a new perspective on learning and innovation”, Administrative Science Quarterly, Vol. 35 No. 1, pp. 128-52. Collins, H. (1993), “The structure of knowledge”, Social Research, Vol. 60 No. 1, pp. 95-116. Cook, S.D.N. and Brown, J.S. (1999), “Bridging epistemologies: the generative dance between organisational knowledge and organisational knowing”, Organisation Science, Vol. 10 No. 4, pp. 381-400. Cooper, S. (2000), “Technical entrepreneurship”, in Carter, S. and Jones-Evans, D. (Eds), Enterprise and Small Business, Pearson, Harlow, pp. 220-41. Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1999), “A systems perspective on creativity”, in Henry, J. (Ed.), Creative Management, Sage, London, pp. 11-26. Dess, G.G., Ireland, R.D., Zahra, S.A., Floyd, S.W., Janney, J.J. and Lane, P.J. (2003), “Emerging issues in corporate entrepreneurship”, Journal of Management, Vol. 29 No. 3, pp. 351-78. Dickson, K., Coles, A. and Smith, H. (1998), “Science in the marketplace: the role of the scientific entrepreneur”, in During, W. and Oakey, R. (Eds), New Technology-based Firms in the 1990s, Paul Chapman, London, pp. 27-37. Eisenhardt, K.M. (1989), “Building theories from case study research”, Academy of Management Review, Vol. 14 No. 4, pp. 532-50. Ekvall, G. (2002), “Organisational conditions and levels of creativity”, in Henry, J. and Mayle, D. (Eds), Creative Management, Sage, London, pp. 99-110. Etzkowitz, H. (1983), “Entrepreneurial scientists and entrepreneurial universities in American academic science”, Minerva, Vol. 21, Autumn, pp. 198-233. IJEBR 12,3 162 Etzkowitz, H. (2003a), “The European entrepreneurial university: an alternative to the US model”, Industry and Higher Education, October, pp. 325-35. Etzkowitz, H. (2003b), “Research groups as ‘quasi-firms’: the invention of the entrepreneurial university”, Research Policy, Vol. 32 No. 1, pp. 109-21. Fuller, T. and Moran, P. (2001), “Small enterprises as complex adaptive systems: a methodological question”, Entrepreneurship and Regional Development, Vol. 13 No. 1, pp. 47-63. Gibbons, M., Limoges, C., Nowotny, H., Schwartzman, S., Scott, P. and Trow, M. (1994), The New Production of Knowledge, Sage, London. Guba, E.G. and Lincoln, Y.S. (1994), “Competing paradigms in qualitative research”, in Denzin, N.K. and Lincoln, Y.S. (Eds), Handbook of Qualitative Research, Sage, Thousand Oaks, CA, pp. 105-17. Hitt, M.A., Ireland, R.D., Camp, M. and Sexton, D.L. (2001), “Strategic entrepreneurship: entrepreneurial strategies for wealth creation”, Strategic Management Journal, Vol. 22, pp. 479-91. Hurst, D.K. (1995), Crisis and Renewal: Meeting the Challenge of Organizational Change, Harvard Business Press, Boston, MA. Jones-Evans, D. (1995), “A typology of technology-based entrepreneurs: a model based on previous occupational background”, International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour & Research, Vol. 1 No. 1, pp. 26-47. Kirton, M. (1984), “Adaptors and innovators: why new initiatives get blocked”, Long Range Planning, Vol. 17 No. 2, pp. 137-43. Krackhardt, D. and Hanson, J. (1993), “Informal networks: the company behind the chart”, Harvard Business Review, Vol. 71 No. 4, pp. 104-11. Kuhn, T.S. (1962), The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, IL. Louis, K.S., Blumenthal, D., Gluck, M.E. and Stoto, M.A. (1989), “Entrepreneurs in academe: an exploration of behaviours among life scientists”, Administrative Science Quarterly, Vol. 34 No. 1, pp. 110-31. Louw, L., van Eeden, S.M., Bosch, J.K. and Venter, D.J.L. (2003), “Entrepreneurial traits of undergraduate students at selected South African tertiary institutions”, International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour & Research, Vol. 9 No. 1, pp. 5-26. Lundberg, C.C. (1999), “Finding research agendas: getting started Weick-like”, available at: http://siop.org/tip/backissues/TipOcto99/3Lundberg.htm Lundvall, B. (1992), National Systems of Innovation: Towards a Theory of Innovation and Interactive Learning, Pinter Publishers, London. Martin, J.N.T. (2000), Managing Problems Creatively, The Open University, Milton Keynes. Miles, M.P. and Covin, J.G. (2002), “Exploring the practice of corporate venturing: some common forms and their organisational implications”, Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, Vol. 26 No. 3, pp. 21-40. Nonaka, I. (1994), “A dynamic theory of organisational knowledge creation”, Organisation Science, Vol. 5 No. 1, pp. 14-37. Nonaka, I. and Takeuchi, H. (1995), The Knowledge-creating Company: How Japanese Companies Create the Dynamics of Innovation, Oxford University Press, Oxford. Oakey, R.P. (1995), High-technology New Firms: Variable Barriers to Growth, Paul Chapman, London. OST (2001), Science Enterprise Challenge Guidelines, Office of Science and Technology, London, available at: www.ost.gov.uk/enterprise/knowledge/sec.htm Roberts, E.B. (1991), Entrepreneurs in High Technology: Lessons from MIT and Beyond, Oxford University Press, Oxford. Academic entrepreneurship 163 Samson, K.J. and Gurdon, M.A. (1993), “University scientists as entrepreneurs: a special case of technology transfer and high technology venturing”, Technovation, Vol. 13 No. 2, pp. 63-71. Saxenian, A. (1996), Regional Advantage: Culture and Competition in Silicon Valley and Route 128, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA. Segal, N.S. (1986), “Universities and technological entrepreneurship in Britain: some implications of the Cambridge phenomenon”, Technovation, Vol. 4 No. 3, pp. 189-204. Senge, P. (1990), The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization, Century Business, London. Sharma, P. and Chrisman, J.J. (1999), “Towards a reconciliation of the definitional issues in the field of corporate entrepreneurship”, Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, Vol. 23 No. 3, pp. 11-27. Sharma, S. (1999), “Trespass or symbiosis? Dissolving the boundaries between strategic marketing and strategic management”, Journal of Strategic Marketing, Vol. 7 No. 2, pp. 73-88. Spilling, O.R. (1996), “The entrepreneurial system”, Journal of Business Research, Vol. 36 No. 1, pp. 91-103. Storey, D.J. and Tether, B.S. (1998), “Public policy measures to support new technology-based firms in the European Union”, Research Policy, Vol. 26 No. 9, pp. 1037-57. Tidd, J. and Barnes, S. (1999), “Spin-in or spin-out? Corporate venturing in life sciences”, International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Vol. 1 No. 2, pp. 109-16. Tidd, J., Bessant, J. and Pavitt, K. (2005), Managing Innovation, Wiley, Chichester. Van de Ven, A.H. (1993), “The development of an infrastructure for entrepreneurship”, Journal of Business Venturing, Vol. 8 No. 3, pp. 211-30. Walton, A.P. (2003), “The impact of interpersonal factors on creativity”, International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour & Research, Vol. 9 No. 4, pp. 146-62. Weick, K.E. (1995), Sensemaking in Organisations, Sage, Beverly Hills, CA. Wenger, E. (2000), “Communities of practice and social learning systems”, Organization, Vol. 7 No. 2, pp. 225-46. Yin, R. (1994), Case Study Research, Sage, Beverly Hills, CA. Yin, R. (2003), Case Study Research: Design and Methods, Sage, Thousand Oaks, CA. Zahra, S.A. and Dess, G.G. (2001), “Entrepreneurship as a field of research: encouraging dialogue and debate”, Academy of Management Review, Vol. 26, pp. 8-10. Zhao, F. (2005), “Exploring the synergy between entrepreneurship and innovation”, International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour & Research, Vol. 11 No. 1, pp. 25-41. Further reading Fine, M., Weis, L., Weseen, S. and Wong, L. (2000), “For who? Qualitative research, representation and social responsibilities”, in Denzin, N.K. and Lincoln, Y.S. (Eds), Handbook of Qualitative Research, Sage, Thousand Oaks, CA, pp. 107-32. Stake, R.E. (2000), “Case studies”, in Denzin, N.K. and Lincoln, Y.S. (Eds), Handbook of Qualitative Research, Sage, Thousand Oaks, CA, pp. 435-54. IJEBR 12,3 164 To

PY - 2006

Y1 - 2006

N2 - Purpose – To explore, describe and explain what processes are at work in facilitating or inhibiting entrepreneurship amongst academics. Design/methodology/approach – A corporate entrepreneurship perspective is used to construct a framework for understanding academic entrepreneurship at different ontological levels within a university context. A single case study method is adopted involving a purposeful sampling strategy of academic entrepreneurs within one university. A sense-making approach investigated the practice of entrepreneurship by academics. Findings – Develops a tentative framework for bounding the phenomenon of academic entrepreneurship and presents a model that attempts to identify key elements of academic entrepreneurship in terms of different modes of knowledge production and value-creating processes. Research limitations/implications – The single case setting limits the applicability of the research to other institutions. However, the framework and model that are developed and the overall approach are valuable contributions to an important, emerging research area. The academic entrepreneurship framework provides a series of logically related conceptual bins that form a basis for future research. The model of academic entrepreneurship attempts to explain how academics produce different types of knowledge. Practical implications – The paper suggests that academic entrepreneurs have a complex set of relationships with their parent disciplines and the university setting within which they operate. The outcomes indicate that orthodox models of entrepreneurship are not always meaningful as regards understanding what academic entrepreneurs actually do in practice. Originality/value – The paper investigates a little-understood phenomenon and one that is increasingly important for UK policy makers and university administrators. The academic entrepreneurship framework and model is an original and valuable contribution to the study of this phenomenon.

AB - Purpose – To explore, describe and explain what processes are at work in facilitating or inhibiting entrepreneurship amongst academics. Design/methodology/approach – A corporate entrepreneurship perspective is used to construct a framework for understanding academic entrepreneurship at different ontological levels within a university context. A single case study method is adopted involving a purposeful sampling strategy of academic entrepreneurs within one university. A sense-making approach investigated the practice of entrepreneurship by academics. Findings – Develops a tentative framework for bounding the phenomenon of academic entrepreneurship and presents a model that attempts to identify key elements of academic entrepreneurship in terms of different modes of knowledge production and value-creating processes. Research limitations/implications – The single case setting limits the applicability of the research to other institutions. However, the framework and model that are developed and the overall approach are valuable contributions to an important, emerging research area. The academic entrepreneurship framework provides a series of logically related conceptual bins that form a basis for future research. The model of academic entrepreneurship attempts to explain how academics produce different types of knowledge. Practical implications – The paper suggests that academic entrepreneurs have a complex set of relationships with their parent disciplines and the university setting within which they operate. The outcomes indicate that orthodox models of entrepreneurship are not always meaningful as regards understanding what academic entrepreneurs actually do in practice. Originality/value – The paper investigates a little-understood phenomenon and one that is increasingly important for UK policy makers and university administrators. The academic entrepreneurship framework and model is an original and valuable contribution to the study of this phenomenon.

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