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Place-based ecosystems: making connections between entrepreneurship and innovation

A team of academics from the Centre for Regional Economic and Enterprise Development (CREED) at Sheffield University Management School (SUMS) participated in an ESRC funded two-day workshop in Tokyo, Japan, exploring new insights into entrepreneurial ecosystems. Dr Chay Brooks, Dr Cristian Gherhes and Professor Tim Vorley are collaborating in a new project exploring the future of entrepreneurial ecosystems and the importance of innovation for the future of the UK economy. Dr Cristian Gherhes, a Research Associate at CREED commented: “The opportunity to be in Japan and participating in this event highlights the exciting work of CREED in pushing research horizons.”

The workshop, organised by Dr Fumi Kitagawa of the University of Edinburgh, brought together universities, government and innovative businesses from across the United Kingdom and Japan to discuss a range of emergent issues relating to global science and innovation policy. Speakers tackled topics ranging from the current approach of start-up policies to the past, present and future of ecosystems in both countries, as well as how entrepreneurial ecosystems are evaluated and measured.

The workshop programme included a series of high profile speakers from the British Embassy in Japan, the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (also known as MEXT), Japanese Cabinet Office, Tokyo Metropolitan Government, Osaka Prefectural Government Office, Bureau of Industrial and Labour Affairs, alongside Universities across Tokyo. The team from CREED all acted as respondents across the panels, providing international reflection on the presentations.

Speaker at workshop In conjunction with Japanese partners CREED will continue to engage in this  programme of research going forward and will explore how entrepreneurial ecosystems are being developed in global contexts. The project sits alongside the ongoing relationship between SUMS and Kobe University, part of which CREED PhD student Sara Ballero is researching entrepreneurship and enterprise in rural areas.

This work forms part of a broader portfolio of interdisciplinary research led by CREED examining the policy and practice of innovation, entrepreneurship and regional economic development both in the UK and around the world. This project builds on continuing work with UK and international governments and organisations.

In commenting on the visit to Japan and participation in the event at the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies Dr Chay Brooks said:

“This is an excellent example of CREED engaging in internationally leading initiatives. We are delighted to be part of this initiative funded by the Economic and Social Research Council and hope it leads to other opportunities.”

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