Title: Improving local economies through technology transfer: utilising incubators to facilitate cluster development

Authors: Robert P. Singh, Ravi K. Jain

Addresses: Earl G. Graves School of Business, Morgan State University, Baltimore, MD 21251, USA. School of Engineering and Computer Science, University of the Pacific, Stockton, CA 95211, USA

Abstract: Successful technology transfer can spur growth in local economies. There are now over 800 business incubators in the USA. Many of the firms housed within these incubators offer new technologies that hold the promise of creating jobs in the local economies surrounding these incubators. Using Silicon Valley as a model, this paper discusses the importance of cluster development and the role social networks play in creating opportunities and facilitating entrepreneurial and technology transfer processes. The authors argue that while incubators can be an important part of the technology transfer process, economic development stakeholders (e.g., business leaders, politicians, entrepreneurs) must look beyond traditional incubator activities to provide networking opportunities for client firms, and plan for cluster development in order to successfully grow local economies. The paper provides specific recommendations to improve incubator activities based on the theoretical concepts explored in the paper.

Keywords: technology transfer; incubators; cluster development; economic growth/development.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTTC.2003.003169

International Journal of Technology Transfer and Commercialisation, 2003 Vol.2 No.3, pp.249-262

Published online: 13 Jul 2003 *

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