Global Experience in Policy and Program Development
Edited by Sarfraz A. Mian
Chapter 17: Science, Technology and Regional Entrepreneurial Growth in India: The Case of the Software Industry
Jay Mitra and Ganesh Natarajan INTRODUCTION It is argued that growth and development of the software industry in India has a symbiotic relationship with entrepreneurship and entrepreneurial values. In this context entrepreneurship is referred to as the process by which new venture creation or innovation is generated and supported by a mix of talented and creative people, responsive and dynamic organizational values, and a conducive environment created by both external factors and effective policy formulation (Mitra, 2000). The authors draw on empirical evidence to posit a view that the nature and scope of software development allow for the evolution of entrepreneurship through the operation of four generic processes: ‘variation’, ‘selection’, ‘retention and diffusion’ and ‘the struggle over scarce resources’ (Aldrich, 1999) involving entrepreneurial people, entrepreneurial organizations and an entrepreneurial environment (Mitra, 2007). The emergence of the software industry in India has enabled a new generation of industrial development and subsequent economic growth in the sub-continent, enabling this large democracy to follow a unique path of economic growth driven primarily by the dynamics of overseas markets. However, development does not occur in the abstract and evolutionary models identify path-dependent factors (Singhal and Rogers, 2006). Historical antecedents of a quest for technological selfsufficiency and investment in human capital, for example, account for some of that path-dependence. Variation and selection have occurred in the reorganization of technology through a partial abandonment of notions of self-sufficiency as espoused by various governments, based on the recognition of the global environment for software development, an acceptance...
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