Building Entrepreneurial Ecosystems Conducive to Student Entrepreneurship: New Challenges for Universities

Par Mireille Matt, Véronique Schaeffer

We explore the challenges universities face when contributing to the development of an entrepreneurial ecosystem. The lack of efficiency of policies inspired by the traditional entrepreneurial university model, and the fact that students are more active than academic researchers in creating start-ups, lead to student start-up creation being part of the issue of academic entrepreneurship. The higher the number of stakeholders the broader the ecosystem and the more the challenges for universities actively engaged in their development. Our research explores the mechanisms used by universities in triggering transformation of the entrepreneurial ecosystem when integrating student entrepreneurship. It is based on a longitudinal study of the University of Strasbourg. Our findings highlight the incremental nature of entrepreneurial ecosystem building, the internal changes operated by universities integrating students’ entrepreneurship activities in their technology transfer policies, and the evolution of policies oriented to the development of an entrepreneurial culture.
Codes JEL: M13, O32


  • entrepreneurial ecosystem
  • academic entrepreneurship
  • student entrepreneurship
  • university
  • academic start-up
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