Citation Brown R & Mawson S (2019) Entrepreneurial Ecosystems: A Critique of the Latest Industrial Policy Blockbuster. Working Papers in Responsible Banking & Finance, 19-001. Centre for Responsible Banking & Finance. https://www.st-andrews.ac.uk/business/rbf/workingpapers/RBF19_001.pdf
Abstract Efforts to develop entrepreneurial ecosystems (EEs) have proliferated in recent years making it the latest industrial policy ‘blockbuster’. This paper critiques the concept and reviews its application within public policy. It reports the findings from a comprehensive comparative analysis of policy approaches deployed under this conceptual umbrella. Empirically, the findings suggests it is fraught with conceptual ambiguity and is predominantly (and rather
crudely) used to promote ‘more’ entrepreneurship. Genuine systemic policy instruments to aid the functioning of ecosystems are extremely rare. The paper suggests the concept is a ‘chaotic’ one open to wide-ranging misinterpretation and indeed misuse by policy makers.