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|Título:||Social networks and early resource mobilisation by science-based firms|
|Citação:||Videira, P. ; Fontes, M.; Sousa, C. Social networks and early resource mobilisation by science-based firms. In: Proceedings of the 4th European Conference on Entrepreneurship and Innovation (ECEI). Antwerp, 2009, 10-11 September|
|Resumo:||This paper addresses the way entrepreneurs’ social networks affect the opportunity identification and the access and mobilization of resources in a science-based field – biotechnology - facilitating the founding of new firms. Adopting an analytical framework that combines contributions from the technological entrepreneurship and the social network literature we propose that: (i) entrepreneurs’ social networks are critical to access the wide range of resources required for firm creation; (ii) different networks configurations (in terms of composition and structure) are associated with the access and mobilisation of different types of resources. The paper presents a methodology that combines several methods usually applied separately and which permits to assemble a vast array of data capturing the origin, nature and contents of the relationships through which key resources and competences flow into the new firm. A central aspect of this methodology is the reconstruction of the firm social networks, encompassing the mapping of the personal networks of the entrepreneurial team, built along their academic and professional trajectories (potential networks); and the identification of the members of these networks who were mobilised by the firms during the formation process, as well as the new relationships, informal or formal, intentionally build already having the new firm as a goal (mobilisation networks). Different “mobilisation networks” are reconstructed, according to the nature of the inputs being searched: network of opportunity and access (tangible resources, such as capital, human resources and facilities); network of innovation (scientific and technological knowledge); network of power and influence (credibility and mediation into relevant sources). The structure and composition of these networks are then analysed and compared, using social network analysis methods, with a view to assess whether the nature of different types of resources is associated with different networks configurations. This methodology is applied to the most science-based sub-set of the Portuguese biotechnology industry – the molecular biology firms (23 firms and 61 entrepreneurs). In this paper we present preliminary results based on the analysis of four cases that enabled us to test the viability and robustness of the methodology and to evaluate its effectiveness in answering to your research questions. The results are therefore still exploratory, being focused on regularities that could be identified and that might reflect modes of behaviour that are shared by this category of firms. They confirm that entrepreneurs, in their search for key resources, select only some of the members of networks derived from their previous trajectories, but also add new members, purposefully chosen because they fulfil some important function in the new firm. In addition, the comparison of the composition and structure of different “mobilisation networks”, provides some confirmation that access to different resources entail different types of actors and relations, thus being associated with different network configurations. But it also uncovers the presence of “multiplex ties” that provide access to more than one type of resource, as well as the central role of some type of actors, associated with the entrepreneurs trajectory.|
|Aparece nas colecções:||UMOSE - Comunicações em actas de encontros científicos internacionais|
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