Edited by David B. Audretsch, Oliver Falck, Stephan Heblich and Adam Lederer
Chapter 17: Startup Firms from Research in US Universities
Richard A. Jensen INTRODUCTION As is well known by now, the Bayh–Dole Act led to an explosion in technology transfer efforts by universities, as well as a substantial increase in the commercialization of university inventions. Technology transfer offices (TTOs) at US universities are responsible for making good-faith efforts to commercialize university inventions. This process begins when a faculty member discloses a potential invention to the TTO, which then tries to find a partner for commercialization. The partner may be either an established firm or a new business venture (startup) funded independently by venture capitalists, angel investors or the faculty inventor. Although initially most of this activity took the form of license agreements with established firms, there has been an increase in commercialization via new firms, or startups, with the passage of time. This chapter empirically examines university entrepreneurship in the form of the commercialization of faculty inventions through startup firms for the period 1994 through 2004. According to data collected by the Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM), for fiscal years 1993–2004, the number of startups emerging from US universities increased by nearly 80 percent, and the average number of startups per university increased by about 45 percent. Several models are estimated of both the annual number of startups initiated per university and the annual cumulative number of operational startups per university. Generally speaking, annual startups initiated measures the number of new firms created in that year, while annual cumulative operational startups measures the number of all startups...
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