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  • Open Access
  • © 2022

Questioning the Entrepreneurial State

Status-quo, Pitfalls, and the Need for Credible Innovation Policy

  • This book is open access, which means that you have free and unlimited access

  • Provides a holistic critique of the notion of an ‘Entrepreneurial State’

  • Analyses both failed and successful innovation policies in Europe, USA, and China

  • Assists in future policy-design

Part of the book series: International Studies in Entrepreneurship (ISEN, volume 53)

Buying options

Softcover Book USD 49.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
Hardcover Book USD 59.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)

Table of contents (18 chapters)

  1. Front Matter

    Pages i-xi
  2. Introductory Chapter

    1. Front Matter

      Pages 1-1
    2. Introduction

      • Karl Wennberg, Christian Sandström
      Pages 3-18Open Access
  3. The Entrepreneurial State: Theoretical Perspectives

    1. Front Matter

      Pages 19-19
    2. The Entrepreneurial State and the Platform Economy

      • Sinclair Davidson, Jason Potts
      Pages 21-36Open Access
    3. An Effectual Analysis of Markets and States

      • Saras D. Sarasvathy
      Pages 37-55Open Access
    4. The Entrepreneurial State: An Ownership Competence Perspective

      • Samuele Murtinu, Nicolai J. Foss, Peter G. Klein
      Pages 57-75Open Access
  4. The Entrepreneurial State, Entrepreneurial Universities, and Startups

    1. Front Matter

      Pages 93-93
    2. Building Local Innovation Support Systems: Theory and Practice

      • Dan Hjalmarsson
      Pages 95-109Open Access
    3. Cultural Ideals in the Entrepreneurship Industry

      • Anna Brattström
      Pages 133-155Open Access
    4. Evaluating Evaluations of Innovation Policy: Exploring Reliability, Methods, and Conflicts of Interest

      • Elias Collin, Christian Sandström, Karl Wennberg
      Pages 157-173Open Access
    5. Do Targeted R&D Grants toward SMEs Increase Employment and Demand for High Human Capital Workers?

      • Sven-Olov Daunfeldt, Daniel Halvarsson, Patrik Gustavsson Tingvall, Alexander McKelvie
      Pages 175-198Open Access
  5. The Entrepreneurial State and Sustainability Transitions

    1. Front Matter

      Pages 199-199
    2. Third-Generation Innovation Policy: System Transformation or Reinforcing Business as Usual?

      • John-Erik Bergkvist, Jerker Moodysson, Christian Sandström
      Pages 201-217Open Access
    3. The Failures of the Entrepreneurial State: Subsidies to Renewable Energies in Europe

      • Carlo Amenta, Carlo Stagnaro
      Pages 233-250Open Access
  6. From the Entrepreneurial State Towards Evidence-Based Innovation Policy

    1. Front Matter

      Pages 271-271

About this book

The 2008 financial crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic have made the authorities to increasingly turn inward and use ethnocentrism, protectionism, and top-down approaches to guide policy on trade, competition, and industrial development. The continuing aftereffects of such policies range from the rise and seeming success of authoritarian states, rise of populist and protectionist trends, and evolving academic agendas inspiring the reemergence of top-down industrial policies across the world.

This open access edited volume contains contributions from 40 scholars with expertise in economics, innovation, management, and economic history. The chapters offer unique theoretical and empirical contributions discussing topics such as how industrial policies affect risk, incentives, and information for investments. They also address the policy perspectives on new technologies such as AI and its implications for market entry, the role for independent entrepreneurship in increasingly regulated markets, and whether governments should focus on market interventions or institutional capacity-building.

Questioning the Entrepreneurial State initiates a much sought-after debate on the notion of an Entrepreneurial State. It discusses the dangers of top-down approaches to industrial policy, examines lessons from such approaches for future policy design, and calls attention to the progress of open and contestable markets in a sound economy and society. 


  • Open Access
  • Market failure
  • Innovation policy
  • Protectionism
  • Competition policy
  • EU Green Deal

Editors and Affiliations

  • Stockholm School of Economics, Stockholm, Sweden

    Karl Wennberg

  • Jönköping International Business School, Jönköping, Sweden

    Christian Sandström

About the editors

Karl Wennberg holds the Barbara Bergström Chair of Educational Leadership and Quality and is a research fellow at the House of Innovation, both at the Stockholm School of Economics (Sweden). He is one of the leading scholars on entrepreneurship in Europe, with over 60 published scholarly articles in high-ranking journals and 10 books. His research is on entrepreneurship, innovation policy, and organization theory, where public policy implication of theoretical and empirical research has been a common thread in his research. 

Christian Sandström is Senior Associate Professor of Digital Business at Jönköping International Business School (Sweden) and the Ratio Institute (Sweden). His research concerns innovation policy and the interplay between technological and institutional change.

Bibliographic Information

Buying options

Softcover Book USD 49.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
Hardcover Book USD 59.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)