Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


University spin-outs in Europe - Overview and good practice

Funded under: FP5-INNOVATION-SME


Innovation Policy Studies - Innovation Management

This paper represents the findings from a research programme begun in January 2000 and utilising a variety of techniques and events to identify good practice in spin-out and spin-off financing by research and technology development institutions (RTDIs). The tools employed in the course of the investigation have included a summary literature review, a questionnaire-based survey of practitioners and 40 in-depth telephone interviews with spin-out programme managers. Overall the consultants estimated that there are just over 300 spin-out programmes throughout Europe. These take a number of institutional forms, and operate at widely different levels of activity and financial support.

Europe has four distinct models for developing spin-out programmes. The "top down" model, in which government funding is channeled through public agencies; the "network" model, in which a privately funded university incubator, business support agency and financiers get together; a more "incremental" approach by local universities, in which spin-out programme components like incubators and funds are developed over time; and the "technopole" model, which involves a fundamental re-orientation to create an entrepreneurial culture in all aspects of university life.

The study is published by the Innovation Directorate of DG Enterprise as Innovation Papers No. 21 (EUR 17046).

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