, Volume 95, Issue 3, pp 1189–1207

Entry strategies in an emerging technology: a pilot web-based study of graphene firms

  • Sanjay K. Arora
  • Jan Youtie
  • Philip Shapira
  • Lidan Gao
  • TingTing Ma

DOI: 10.1007/s11192-013-0950-7

Cite this article as:
Arora, S.K., Youtie, J., Shapira, P. et al. Scientometrics (2013) 95: 1189. doi:10.1007/s11192-013-0950-7


We explore pilot web-based methods to probe the strategies followed by new small and medium-sized technology-based firms as they seek to commercialize emerging technologies. Tracking and understanding the behavior of such early commercial entrants is not straightforward because smaller firms with limited resources do not always widely engage in readily visible and accessible activities such as publishing and patenting. However, many new firms, even if small, present information about themselves that is available online. Focusing on the early commercialization of novel graphene technologies, we introduce a “web scraping” approach to systematically capture information contained in the online web pages of a sample of small and medium-sized high technology graphene firms in the US, UK, and China. We analyze this information and devise measures that gauge how firm specialization in the target technology impacts overall market orientation. Three groups of graphene enterprises are identified which vary by their focus on product development, materials development, and integration into existing product portfolios. Country-level factors are important in understanding these early diverging commercial approaches in the nascent graphene market. We consider management and policy implications of our findings, and discuss the value, including strengths and weaknesses, of web scraping as an additional information source on enterprise strategies in emerging technologies.


Emerging technology Graphene Small and medium enterprise Commercialization Market entry Web scraping United States United Kingdom China 

Mathematical Subject Classification


JEL Classification

C81 D22 M13 O32 O32 O57 Z18 

Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sanjay K. Arora
    • 1
  • Jan Youtie
    • 2
  • Philip Shapira
    • 1
    • 3
  • Lidan Gao
    • 4
  • TingTing Ma
    • 5
  1. 1.School of Public PolicyGeorgia Institute of TechnologyAlantaUSA
  2. 2.Enterprise Innovation InstituteGeorgia Institute of TechnologyAtlantaUSA
  3. 3.Manchester Institute of Innovation Research, Manchester Business SchoolUniversity of ManchesterManchesterUK
  4. 4.Chengdu Library of the Chinese Academy of SciencesChengduPeople’s Republic of China
  5. 5.School of Economics and ManagementBeijing Institute of TechnologyBeijingPeople’s Republic of China

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