Cross-faculty proximity and academic entrepreneurship: The role of business schools

Maximilian Goethner, Michael Wyrwich*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)
18 Downloads (Pure)


Over the past decades, entrepreneurial activity has started to be considered a third mission of higher education institutions. Our study examines the extent to which entrepreneurship at universities is driven by spatial proximity between university faculties. To this end, we use a new dataset that links information on business idea generation by faculties of German universities between 2007 and 2014 with comprehensive data on structural characteristics of these universities and faculties (e.g., number of academic staff, students, industry funding). Our analysis shows that the emergence of entrepreneurial ideas in natural sciences is positively affected by proximity to business schools. This pattern suggests the presence of knowledge flows between these two types of university faculties as an important source of science-based and technology-oriented business ideas. We do not find such a relationship between proximity to business schools and other faculties.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1016-1062
Number of pages47
JournalJournal of technology transfer
Issue number4
Early online date27 Mar 2019
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Academic entrepreneurship
  • Entrepreneurial human capital
  • Knowledge spillover
  • Spatial proximity


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