Innovation and Industry Evolution (MIT Press)

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9780262011464: Innovation and Industry Evolution (MIT Press)

It once took two decades to replace one-third of the Fortune 500; now a subset of new firms are challenging and displacing this elite group at a breathtaking rate, while armies of startups come and go within just a few years. Most new jobs are, in fact, coming from small firms, reversing the trend of a century. David Audretsch takes a close look at the U.S. economy in motion, providing a detailed and systematic investigation of the dynamic process by which industries and firms enter into markets, either grow and survive, or disappear. He shapes a clear understanding of the role that small, entrepreneurial firms play in this evolutionary process and in the asymmetric size distribution of firms in the typical industry.Audretsch introduces the large longitudinal database maintained by the U.S. Small Business Administration that is used to identify the startup of new firms and track their performance over time. He then provides different snapshots of the process of industries in motion: why new-firm startup activity varies so greatly across industries; what happens to these firms after they enter the market; the extent to which entrepreneurial firms account for an industry's economic activity and why that measure varies across industries; how small firms compensate for size-related disadvantages; and who exits and why.Audretsch concludes that the structure of industries is characterized by a high degree of fluidity and turbulence, even as the patterns of evolution vary considerably from industry to industry. The dynamic process by which firms and industries evolve over time is shaped by three fundamental factors: technology, scale economies, and demand. Most important, the evidence suggests that it is the differences in the knowledge conditions and technology underlying each specific industry -- key elements in innovation -- that are responsible for the pattern particular to that industry.

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About the Author:

David B. Audretsch is the Director of the Max Planck Institute of Economics in Jena, Germany. He also serves as a Scholar-in-Residence at the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. In addition, he is an Honorary Professor at the Friedrich Schiller University of Jena, Research Professor at Durham University, a Distinguished Professor and the Ameritech Chair of Economic Development and Director of the Institute for Development Strategies at Indiana University, an External Director of Research at the Kiel Institute for the World Economy, and a Research Fellow of the Centre for Economic Policy Research (London). Dr Audretsch's research has focused on the links between entrepreneurship, government policy, innovation, economic development, and global competitiveness. Dr Audretsch is ranked as the 21st most cited scholar in economics and business, 1996 2006. He is co-founder and co-editor of Small Business Economics: An Entrepreneurship Journal. He was awarded the 2001 International Award for Entrepreneurship and Small Business Research by the Swedish Foundation for Small Business Research.

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