Ecosystems of entrepreneurship: configurations and critical dimensions
Entrepreneurial ecosystems research has largely focused on the profile of a handful of successful locations. This has prevented a deeper understanding of the mechanisms that shape entrepreneurial activity across the geographical space. Our goals in this research are (1) to identify the critical dimensions of entrepreneurial ecosystems, and (2) to assess whether successful ecosystems rely on heterogeneous configurations. Through fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis, we address this issue with data from the State of São Paulo, Brazil. Findings generate a typological hierarchy of attributes, where the range of critical dimensions seems to be much more restricted than previously argued, and alternative configurations appear to lead to similar outcomes. A first pivotal path toward establishing a thriving ecosystem is fundamentally based on the conditions of the knowledge Infrastructure. A second approach combines elements of the socioeconomic system with the knowledge environment. Although some elements are ubiquitous, contributing attributes differ across distinct configurations, suggesting some level of heterogeneity in the dominant dimensions of entrepreneurial ecosystems. Such evidence contributes to the debate on entrepreneurial ecosystems’ dimensions and elements, offering exploratory insights on alternative ways to promote an environment conducive to knowledge-intensive ventures.