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University Technology Transfer and Agricultural Science Entrepreneurial Education: a View from Inside

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Focusing on universities whose faculty has little understanding of technology transfer and the commercialization of academic research, we provide a case study of such a university and argue that even some elementary and indirect form of entrepreneurial training can positively affect faculty technology transfer. In light of the above, we seek to contribute to the literature exploring what makes technology transfer programs at Universities successful and our unique contribution lies on elucidating the link between university technology transfer and science and technology entrepreneurial education (STEE). To this effect, we discuss ways to develop integration processes among STEE and technology transfer offices.

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  1. An indication of the international orientation of AUA’s staff can be provided by looking into the countries where they obtained their PhD. Fifty-five percent got their PhDs in Greek Universities (41% in AUA). The remaining 45% received their PhD in UK: 19%, USA: 13%, France: 5%, Germany: 4%, and other countries: 4%.

  2. In this period, there have been 1, 69, and 130 papers from AUA in respectively the top 1, 10, and 25% most influential.

  3. Data on number of publications, number of citations, and relative citation impact are taken from Sahini (2014).

  4. A manual search was done on the full list of AUA staff using the European Patent Office (EPO) online service, Espacenet. As discussed in Drivas et al. (2015), matches have been further cross-checked to see if the inventor had disclosed a Greek address and whether the technology field of the patent was similar to his/her area of specialization.

  5. The figure is even lower if single applicants are considered: in fact, the 28 patent applications have been filed by 11 researchers, meaning that 94% of the research staff has not been involved in any patenting activity from 2002 to 2013.

  6. ECOTROPHELIA has the ambition to promote entrepreneurship and competitiveness within the European food industry by implementing a training network of excellence in food innovation and the organization of national and European food innovation competitions “The Student Awards of Food Innovation” a real eye-opener for the food industry see

  7. Interview conducted on 23 June 2017.

  8. Interview conducted on 23 June 2017.

  9. Interview conducted on 24 June 2017.

  10. Interview conducted on 24 June 2017.

  11. Interview conducted on 23 June 2017.

  12. Interview conducted on 24 June 2017.

  13. Interview conducted on 24 June 2017.

  14. Interview conducted on 24 June 2017.

  15. Interview conducted on 24 June 2017.

  16. The largest majority of these research money stems from the Framework Programs.

  17. Espacenet is a database hosted by the European Patent Office, which contains information on patents and patent applications for more than 90 countries.

  18. We examined the characteristics of faculty that the team attained an interview and those that did not. We did not find any notable statistical differences between the two samples.

  19. In general, funding from the government is less competitive and implies more bureaucratic burden and uncertainties in dates, annuities. Moreover, it depends on institutional and organizational hurdles of absorbing EU funds at the first place which conveys abrupt changes in the flows of funds to beneficiaries (Grant et al. 2011).


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This research is partially funded from the Municipality of Athens grant “Innovation and Entrepreneurship – Valorization of Research by the Agricultural University of Athens”, reference no: 464052. Stelios Rozakis acknowledges financial support by the Widening Program ERA Chair: project BioEcon (H2020), contract number: 669092. The authors are grateful to Kyriakos Drivas for helpful advice on the quantitative analysis. The usual disclaimer applies.

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Correspondence to Andreas Panagopoulos.

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Panagopoulos, A., Rozakis, S., Sideri, K. et al. University Technology Transfer and Agricultural Science Entrepreneurial Education: a View from Inside. J Knowl Econ 10, 1466–1481 (2019).

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