Edited by David B. Audretsch, Isabel Grilo and A. Roy Thurik
Chapter 1: Explaining Entrepreneurship and the Role of Policy: A Framework
* David B. Audretsch, Isabel Grilo and A. Roy Thurik Introduction This book has two cornerstones. The ﬁrst is that entrepreneurship has emerged as a bona ﬁde focus of public policy, particularly with respect to economic growth and employment creation. For example, the primary role played by entrepreneurship was identiﬁed by Romano Prodi during his tenure as President of the European Commission, ‘Our lacunae in the ﬁeld of entrepreneurship needs to be taken seriously because there is mounting evidence that the key to economic growth and productivity improvements lies in the entrepreneurial capacity of an economy’ (Prodi, 2002, p. 1). The European Union does not have a monopoly on the concern about entrepreneurship. From the other side of the Atlantic, Mowery (2005, p. 40) observes: During the 1990s, the era of the ‘New Economy,’ numerous observers (including some who less than 10 years earlier had written oﬀ the US economy as doomed to economic decline in the face of competition from such economic powerhouses as Japan) hailed the resurgent economy in the United States as an illustration of the power of high-technology entrepreneurship. The new ﬁrms that a decade earlier had been criticized by such authorities as the MIT Commission on Industrial Productivity (Dertouzos et al., 1989) for their failure to sustain competition against large non-U.S. ﬁrms were seen as important sources of economic dynamism and employment growth. Indeed, the transformation in U.S. economic performance between the 1980s and 1990s is only slightly less remarkable than the failure of...
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