Let’s stop talking about ‘innovation’…

The term ‘innovation’ is widely used and abused. What do you imagine when you think of ‘innovation’? Something new? New technology? New drugs or the latest app? Any or all of these could be innovations each of which will have very different impacts on society and the firms and consumers they touch. A new edition… Read more

Building resilience in under-represented entrepreneurs: A European comparative study

Equipping under-represented SME leaders with the skills and resources to identify and plan for key future risks will not only improve their firms’ resilience – it will also deliver ongoing wider economic benefits. These are some of the takeaways from our latest research report, supported by the JPMorgan Chase Foundation – Building resilience in under-represented… Read more

Small business priorities for a new parliament

Newly-elected MPs heading to Westminster, inboxes no doubt groaning with congratulatory messages and policy briefings, have a busy few weeks (and months) ahead. Moving forward with the first stage of getting Brexit done – the EU Withdrawal Bill – will consume much of parliament’s time at the beginning of 2020. But then what? It’s the… Read more

The time has come to sharpen the focus on productivity

Raising productivity is often cited as one of the UK’s most important economic challenges. On the surface of it, improving productivity sounds like a pretty straightforward idea to grasp. It’s about economies, workplaces and people being more efficient, increasing the volume of goods created in relation to the inputs used to produce them. But in… Read more

What’s happening to finance in an uncertain world?

This week saw the launch of the latest results of the SME Finance Monitor, produced by BVA BDRC . In the first half of this year, it seems that financing behaviours have been shifting across the SME sector. This movement comes after a long period of relative stability. The survey responses add further colour to… Read more

Small firms and formal intellectual property protection: A paradox?

We know that firms use knowledge protection mechanisms to limit imitation and enhance their ability to appropriate the returns to their innovative investments. Recent research at the ERC suggests that both formal (e.g. patents) and informal (e.g. secrecy) knowledge protection mechanisms are important for the innovation returns of small firms (those with fewer than 50… Read more

Strengthening Sectors – ERC’s 6th State of Small Business conference

Understanding small business dynamics is central to our work at the Enterprise Research Centre and once a year we gather at the Shard in London with 150 researchers, stakeholders, policy makers and small business owners to discuss and debate the state of the small business community. The sixth of these events was held at the… Read more

Innovation and productivity: How strong is the connection?

Innovation and productivity: How strong is the connection? ‘Innovation’ is a much used (and abused) term employed to describe everything from flea collars for dogs[1] to electric cars. As a result, measuring innovation can be tricky, particularly in service sectors where firms’ relationships to customers are often individual and bespoke. Fortunately, the kind people at… Read more