Network creation mechanisms in business incubators and clusters and the implications on new ventures in Lagos technology ecosystem

Kwazu, C., 2022. Network creation mechanisms in business incubators and clusters and the implications on new ventures in Lagos technology ecosystem. PhD, Nottingham Trent University.

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Purpose: The purpose of this study is to explore and analyse the role of entrepreneurs in the network creation process. A great deal of attention has been paid to the relational and structural characteristics of networks to understand the impact of networks on new ventures. Even though these properties provide insight into understanding network impact, they do not cover the whole story since they neglect those who are network beneficiaries or brokers. Additionally, the role of context in stimulating network activities and the relationships that make up those networks has received limited attention. According to researchers like Vissa (2014) and Hallen and Eisenhardt (2012), entrepreneurs should not be viewed as passive actors constrained by network structure, but rather as reflective agents who can shape their network endeavours over time. This study examines the roles of agency, cognition, and context in explaining how entrepreneurs trigger, regulate, and pursue network relationships. By contributing to this knowledge, researchers can better understand network actors' perceptions of network impact. As the context is essential to understanding entrepreneurship, the Lagos Technology Ecosystem, comprised of different incubator models and clusters, is examined. By doing so, knowledge is gained regarding the way entrepreneurial networks are shaped.

Study design/methodology/approach: Multiple case studies are used in this study to allow for comparisons between different cases and exploration of the phenomenon. Two contexts are involved in this study: the incubator and the cluster. By comparing multiple case studies, we can gain a more nuanced understanding of networking mechanisms within them. In addition, they facilitate perceptions of the impact on actors who are involved in networking activities.

Findings: Findings from this study showed that context is essential for building relationships and improving access to critical ingredients for building networks. However, the entrepreneur, who is crucial to creating networks, is influenced by the interaction between contextual factors and sense-making outputs, which enables us to find out what they perceive as network quality and impact. Furthermore, this study provides a framework that can be used to gauge entrepreneurial actors' involvement. The framework can be used to identify properties of networks that can be utilized to design network activities.

Implication: Based on what is learned in this research; we can create network activities for entrepreneurs in various contexts. This could also be used to benchmark the effectiveness of network activities.

Originality: In this study, a conceptual framework for understanding entrepreneurial actors' involvement in network creation is presented. The research explores motivation, brokerage, and contextual interaction in the creation of networks. Unlike conventional models of networking, this takes into account motivation, brokerage, and interaction to understand network impact.

Item Type: Thesis
Creators: Kwazu, C.
Date: February 2022
Rights: This work is the intellectual property of the Chiamaka Kwazu. You may copy up to 5% of this work for private study, or personal, non-commercial research. Any re-use of the information contained within this document should be fully referenced, quoting the author, title, university, degree level and pagination. Queries or requests for any other use, or if a more substantial copy is required, should be directed in the owner(s) of the Intellectual Property Rights.
Divisions: Schools > Nottingham Business School
Record created by: Linda Sullivan
Date Added: 22 Mar 2022 09:20
Last Modified: 22 Mar 2022 09:20

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