1. The Enterprise Research Centre (ERC) is an independent research centre which provides robust and reliable evidence to guide SME policy and practice. The Centre was established in February 2013 to answer one central question ‘What drives SME Growth?’

2. Our mission is to “become an international focal point for research, knowledge and expertise on SME growth and entrepreneurship”.

3. The ERC is a partnership between the following Business Schools: Warwick, Aston, Imperial College, Strathclyde and Birmingham.

4. The Centre is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS), the Technology Strategy Board (TSB) and the British Business Bank (BBB).

Expertise and Advice

We are always keen to disseminate our research findings and knowledge to a broader audience, and would be pleased to help with your enquiries on any issues related to SME Growth issues. Below are some of the subject areas covered by each  Research Theme .


  • How are ambitious are young entrepreneurs?
  • How does this compare to other countries?
  • What can we do to encourage ambition traits in SMEs?

Business Demography

  • Which businesses generate jobs?
  • What impact does regulation have on business growth?


  • How do the support requirements for SMEs run by diverse groups and ethnic minorities?
  • What support mechanisms work?
  • Women in Business?
  • Behaviour analysis of SMEs founded and run by Ethnic Minorities?
  • Impact of Culture on Business Growth?
  • Family Businesses

Finance and Governance

  • How does access to business finance impact SME Growth?
  • Discourage Borrowers?
  • The role of Boards

Innovation and Exporting

  • Innovation
  • Enterprise growth and development
  • Regional development


  • Applied psychology of entrepreneurship and intrapreneurship.
  • What impact does business failure have on SMEs?
  • What role does tuition play in SME growth?
  • What role does the provision of business advice services have on small firms?
  • How do firms learn?

For information on the ERC Projects for 2016 – 2018 , please click here and for the latest news from the ERC visit the News Hub

Press Contact

If you would like to find out more about our research and activities, or have a press enquiry please contact the ERC Centre Manager