Incubation of technology-based student ventures: The importance of networking and team recruitment

Article by Dag Håkon Haneberg and Lise Aaboen

Associate professor and professor at NTNU and associated with Engage


Student entrepreneurship is an important but not well-studied field of research. Student venturing activity is characterized by the lack of experience and expertise among founders, which is a critical barrier in technology-based venturing. Through an in-depth qualitative study of a student venture incubation initiative, the present paper finds that to support student ventures in overcoming this barrier, the recruitment of skilled students with sufficient technical knowledge is the most essential. Several different actors are involved in the process, and the support for student ventures tends to be informal and need-driven rather than structured, formal, and university-prescribed. The multiple actors, both internal and external to the university, are complementary for student venture incubation. This perspective indicates the need for university managers and policy makers to support several multiple actors. Value creation from student entrepreneurship could further be boosted by improved team recruitment activities such as matchmaking events and other networking activities at the university.

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