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Elisa Thomas and Luciana Maines da Silva

One of the assumptions of responsible research and innovation (RRI) is the participation of multiple stakeholders in the research and development (R & D) process with the objective of better aligning the outcomes of R & D with the values, needs, and expectations of society. This chapter aims to analyse how start-ups manage stakeholders’ participation in the RRI context, considering different types of knowledge sharing. Two case studies are presented of start-ups in Brazil that develop online solutions for health and social problems. Results show that the inclusion of stakeholders happens via tacit or explicit knowledge exchange, and that firms need different structures and routines to deal with different knowledge types to fully explore the potentials of inclusiveness. We also found that the main measurement to evaluate ideas for products’ improvement is the start-ups’ internal strategy and not the quantity of requests from external partners.

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Nadja Nordling, Elisa Thomas, Rhiannon Pugh and Roberto Rivas Hermann

This chapter analyses the roles and activities of multinational companies (MNCs) in an entrepreneurial ecosystem (EE) and local start-up incubation. Drawing from literature regarding EEs and incubation policy, we present an example of a type of intervention under-theorized to date: incubation efforts stemming from MNCs rather than government or universities. Presenting the case of Microsoft Innovation Centers (MIC) in Brazil, we explore how collaboration is organized between interdependent actors to provide start-up incubation and foster ecosystem development. We consider both the benefits for the MNC and for the regional actors, and some potential compromises or downsides when MNCs step into the sphere usually occupied by public institutions. Through collaboration with local actors, MNCs may tap into business ecosystems and link regional resources to their own R & D activities at an international scale, while increasing competences in the local community.