Perceptions of firm competitive advantages from teaming up with universities : an exploratory study

Simmons, Sharon and Levie, Jonathan and Monsen, Erik (2015) Perceptions of firm competitive advantages from teaming up with universities : an exploratory study. In: University Evolution, Entrepreneurial Activity and Regional Competitiveness. International Studies in Entrepreneurship, 32 . Springer, pp. 153-174. ISBN 978-3-319-17712-0

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Abstract

In the context of university collaborations, we know very little about why some firms perceive that teaming up with universities provide them with competitive advantages. One reason why we know so little is that university collaborations can take different forms and vary in terms of the nature of relationships, the motivation of parties and the outcomes that are expected from the collaboration. Another reason why is the lack of panel data that can be used to empirically study the competitive advantages that firms obtain from collaborating with universities. That said, the Kauffman Firm Survey (KFS) is a large dataset that asks firm owners about the competitive advantages of their firms and the reasons why they exist. In this paper, we use the KFS perceptual variables to explore the perception of firm owners about the competitive advantages of teaming up with universities. While there are limitations to the empirical conclusions that can be drawn, the research questions we explore using the KFS sample provide interesting avenues for future research.