Academic entrepreneurship: work identity in contexts

Giulia Giunti*, Jo Duberley

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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    Through the qualitative analysis of 81 semi-structured interviews of academics from the STEM fields, working in UK, Australia, and Italy, we support and challenge the previous literature on academic entrepreneurship. On the one hand, our research supports previous studies which suggest that some academics find compatibility between their academic roles and forms of science commercialisation and knowledge transfer. The findings suggest that such an alignment of roles takes place in contexts (disciplinary, proximal) which stimulate and support academic entrepreneurship. At the same time, we argue against of the idea of fusion of academic-entrepreneur role identity and we suggest whilst the two roles may coexist, they are separate, as the academic identity remains the central salient identity. Continuity of core academic values is linked to ‘supranational’ factors such as norms and values of the academic profession and of disciplinary fields, which influence perceptions of alignment or misalignment with various activities, including the entrepreneurial one. We offer a redefinition of academic entrepreneurship through the lens of social entrepreneurship which could constitute the bridge between two worlds which are typically considered difficult to connect.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)532-552
    Number of pages21
    JournalEntrepreneurship and Regional Development
    Issue number5-6
    Early online date22 Feb 2023
    Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2023


    • Academic entrepreneurship
    • Work identity
    • Cross-country
    • Social entrepreneurship
    • Identity work
    • Qualitative analysis
    • Context


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