Chapter 5: Solar Photovoltaic Industry Development from the Early 1990s to World Leadership
Marco Andreozzi INTRODUCTION Technology entrepreneurship is a style of business leadership based on the process of identifying high-potential, technology-intensive business opportunities, gathering resources such as talent and cash, and managing rapid growth using principled, real-time decision-making skills. An attractive business opportunity consists of a great value proposition, technically feasible products, strong intellectual property, a sustainable competitive advantage, a large potential market, and a scaleable business model. It can be based on either a revolutionary breakthrough in technology or an evolutionary advancement; and it can target an existing market or create an entirely new one. This entrepreneurial process is relevant for both independent start ups and within established corporations. (Byers, 2009, p. 1) From the above definitions this chapter will be developed. The analysis of solar photovoltaic (PV from now on) entrepreneurship in China starts from the origins in the early 1990s, as witnessed by the author of this chapter since his early 1993 assignment at Guangzhou University. The year 2011 is when China’s enormous PV manufacturing industry truly became the undisputed centre of the PV world and this is no surprise, as this trend had been establishing itself for years, and is related to China’s emergence in 2010 as the world’s largest exporter and an economic powerhouse of the twenty-first century. However, PV manufacturing has unique conditions as an industry, and the reasons for China’s dominance – and its weaknesses as well – tell an important story that has global relevance for other nations which seek to remain or become clean energy...
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