Handbook of Research on Energy Entrepreneurship
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Handbook of Research on Energy Entrepreneurship

Edited by Rolf Wüstenhagen and Robert Wuebker

This timely Handbook provides an excellent overview of our knowledge on the drivers, influencing factors and outcomes of energy entrepreneurship. As the world grapples with global resource crunches and fights to reap the rewards of new energy technologies, a wide space for entrepreneurial opportunity has emerged. The Handbook of Research on Energy Entrepreneurship offers critical insight on how nations the world over can make full use of those opportunities.
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Chapter 5: Entrepreneurial Opportunity and the Formation of Photovoltaic Clusters in Eastern Germany

Matthias Brachert and Christoph Hornych


Matthias Brachert and Christoph Hornych 1 INTRODUCTION Research on the spatial distribution of economic activity has focused mainly on identifying conditions that sustain industrial clusters, as these are perceived to be the locus of regional economic growth (Braunerhjelm and Feldman, 2006; Lee and Sine, 2007). However, very little is known about the factors that facilitate the emergence of spatial structures in new industries or its performance implications. To achieve deeper insights into these formation processes, ‘theory must explain how information and resources for entrepreneurial activities come to be disproportionally massed in some places and some times’ (Romanelli and Schoonhoven, 2001, p. 41). In this context, recent developments in institutional economic geography underline the contribution of social movements to institutional change and government action, thus affecting entrepreneurship and entrepreneurial opportunity (Sine and David, 2003; Lee and Sine, 2007). As government actions have a spatial dimension, they can induce windows of locational opportunity (WLOs) supporting the evolution of spatial patterns of new industries (Storper and Walker, 1989; Boschma, 1997; Boschma and van der Knaap, 1999). To date, there has been little research into the role of institutional change and government action in the evolution of new industries or entrepreneurial opportunity (Lounsbury et al., 2003; Sine and David, 2003). With regard to the energy sector, the importance of institutional change seems to hold for the effects of environmental movements, as they were able to give an increased awareness of pre-existing technological solutions (see, in particular regarding alternative sources of energy, Lee and Sine,...

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