Commercialization networks in emerging technologies: the case of UK nanotechnology small and midsize enterprises. Fatemeh Salehi, Philip Shapira, and Judy Zolkiewski.
The Journal of Technology Transfer. March 11, 2022. Open Access, available at https://doi.org/10.1007/s10961-022-09923-3.
Contrasting network types and their influences on commercialization outcomes are probed in the context of technology-oriented small and mid-size enterprise (SME) value chain positions. We consider roles of SME agency and strategy to put forward a framework of network types. Using a multiple case approach of a sample of UK nanotechnology SMEs, value-chain positions and networks for commercialization are examined. Data are collected through semi-structured primary interviews with managers and informants and from secondary business databases and other sources.
Commercialization outcomes are found to vary by SME network type and value chain positioning. SMEs can proactively create SME-led, peer-SME or broker-led networks that aid commercialization. SME-led networks enable successful commercialization of upstream and midstream products. Peer- SME networks are used for downstream commercialization. Broker-led networks facilitate commercialization in the upstream part of the value chain. Hybrid networks are used where SMEs pursue multiple commercialization strategies. Reactive approaches to networking and interrupted networks, regardless of value chain position, are unfavourable for commercialization. The study’s conceptual