Title: Bridging the gap between universities of professional education and Small- and Medium-sized Enterprises

Authors: Enno Masurel, Peter Nijkamp

Addresses: Amsterdam Center for Entrepreneurship at VU (ACE@VU), Department of Management and Organization, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, VU University Amsterdam, De Boelelaan 1085, 1081, The Netherlands. ' Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Department of Spatial Economics, VU University Amsterdam, De Boelelaan 1085, 1081 HV Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Abstract: Improving the relationship between knowledge institutions (especially Universities of Professional Education, UPE) and Small- and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) is one of the challenges of current economic policy. Innovation is an important aspect of this policy. However, the characteristics of both UPEs and SMEs appear to be an obstacle in bridging the gap between these two groups. Based on an analysis of survey data from SMEs, this paper contributes to bridging this gap. Information concerning the relationship with UPEs was collected from entrepreneurs to draw strategic policy lessons.

Keywords: SMEs; small and medium-sized enterprises; higher education; universities; professional education; knowledge institutions; economic policies; entrepreneurs; strategic policy; Netherlands; Zwolle; Holland; Windesheim University; foresight; innovation policies; innovative business resources; economic development.

DOI: 10.1504/IJFIP.2011.040064

International Journal of Foresight and Innovation Policy, 2011 Vol.7 No.1/2/3, pp.23 - 43

Published online: 13 May 2011 *

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