Entrepreneurial Business Model for Classical Research University


  • Tonis Mets University of Tartu


knowledge production, entrepreneurial university, intellectual property (IP), publication, patenting, University-IndustryGovernment linkages


Commercialization process of research is analyzed in University-Industry-Government (UIG) framework in the context of entrepreneurial university business model. Critical issue in the UIG-relations model is the role of entrepreneurship: is enterprise integrated into all (education and not only intra-) university activities or is entrepreneurship support system targeted as a function for university R&D commercialization system only? From the literature it is known that the patterns of entrepreneurial university as a knowledge creator for society are more frequently represented in applied science oriented technology universities. The main aspects in entrepreneurial pattern of university are creation and implementation of transferable new knowledge and behaviour of actors in that process. All these aspects contain topics related to R&D funding, inventorship and ownership of patents. Patenting alone is not the evidence of entrepreneurial behaviour of the university, but this is one of the first steps targeted to implement created new knowledge into real business. The aim of the paper is to explore knowledge creation, especially patented intellectual property (IP) created by university staff targeted on commercialization of university research. Entrepreneurship and entrepreneurial environment in UIG network have been identified as critical success factor in knowledge production by university. Based on previous publications university business model in the University-IndustryGovernment framework has been described. The author’s position is that the (state) government is playing a very specific role in university entrepreneurship domain via governmental order as it has been in the fields of education and research. Empirical survey of knowledge production is based on the sample of five European universities from Sweden, Finland, Estonia and the Netherlands. The main research questions are general data about sample universities, like number of researchers, funding of R&D, creation of IP as well as indicators of efficiency of knowledge production. Results demonstrate growth in a number of publications abstracted in ISI Web between 1.2 and 2.0 times in the period 2000-2008. Productivity of publication per researcher differs maximum 1.9 times between universities and productivity of patenting figure differs approximately 13.5 times, partly as a result of Swedish “professors’ privilege” IP regime. That points on the need to learn more non-university patenting by academic personnel of other countries, but it obviously raises the question related to employment and patent ownership regulation in European countries generally. This regulation seems to be absolutely inefficient to protect new knowledge produced for national public R&D funding.

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