Title: The role of trust as mediator between contract, information and knowledge within business incubators

Authors: Benjamin Vedel; Inès Gabarret

Addresses: IAE University of Lille, LEM – Labex Entreprendre, 104 av du people Belge, 59043 Lille Cedex, France ' EDC Paris Business School, OCRE – Labex Entreprendre, 70 Galerie des Damiers, Paris La Defense 1, 92415 Courbevoie Cedex, France

Abstract: The relationship between the incubator team and the tenants is very important to the success of the incubation process. A good relationship is based on cooperation and both parties need to be committed (Rice, 2002). From a monitoring point of view, incubator managers can use two mechanisms to build good relationships with their tenants: the contract and trust. We analysed 177 incubated firms using multiple regression analysis and a structural equation methodology. Our results show that trust acts as a mediator between the contract and both information disclosure and knowledge acquisition.

Keywords: business incubators; trust; information disclosure; contract specificity; knowledge acquisition; mediation; multiple regression analysis; structural equation modelling; incubator teams; incubator tenants; cooperation; SEM; incubator managers; contracts.

DOI: 10.1504/IJESB.2014.065685

International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business, 2014 Vol.23 No.4, pp.509 - 527

Published online: 15 Nov 2014 *

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