Chapter 1: Knowledge commercialization and valorization in regional economic development: new perspectives and challenges
In recent years, commercialization and valorization of knowledge has come to be seen as an important stimulant of economic growth (Agrawal, 2001; Baycan and Stough, 2012; Bok, 2003; Etzkowitz, 1990, 2002; Litan et al., 2007; Viale and Etzkowitz, 2010), particularly for improving the development capabilities and economic performance of regions (Duch et al., 2011; Goldstein and Renault, 2004; Shane, 2004). In parallel, the traditional mission of universities including teaching and research has gradually changed, with new perspectives on the role of the university in the system of knowledge production, and has expanded in order to take over a ‘third mission’, namely commercial activities including patenting, licensing and company formation (Baldini, 2006; Owen-Smith and Powell, 2003; Rasmussen et al., 2006). Universities are now expected not only to sustain or to support economic growth but also to generate economic growth through producing new knowledge and human capital, licensing innovations and creating new companies. These developments have led to the emergence of new phenomena called ‘entrepreneurial universities’ (Baldini, 2006; Etzkowitz et al., 2000; Jacob et al., 2003; Powers, 2004; Smilor et al., 1993) and ‘academic entrepreneurship’ (Bercovitz and Feldmann, 2008; Meyer, 2003; Shane, 2004, Wright et al., 2007).
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