Indiana University


by David Audretsch

Entrepreneurship, Growth, and Public Policy

Edited by

David B. Audretsch
Indiana University, Bloomington

Zoltan Acs
George Mason School of Public Policy, Fairfax

Robert Strom
Kauffman Foundation, Kansas City

Published by Cambridge University Press
ISBN-10: 0521894921
ISBN-13: 9780521894920
Hardbound, 368 pages: $75.00 / £40.00
Available at and other booksellers.

While the public policy community has turned to entrepreneurship to maintain, restore, or generate economic prosperity, the economics profession has been remarkably taciturn in providing guidance for public policy for understanding the links between entrepreneurship and economic growth as well as for framing and weighing policy issues and decisions. The purpose of this volume is to provide a lens through which public policy decisions involving entrepreneurship can be guided and analyzed. In particular, this volume provides insights from leading research concerning the links between entrepreneurship, innovation, and economic growth that shed light on implications for public policy. The book makes clear both how and why small firms and entrepreneurship have emerged as crucial to economic growth, employment, and competitiveness as well as the mandate for public policy in the entrepreneurial society.

  • Most up-to-date academic book on entrepreneurship, growth, and public policy
  • Celebrated contributors include Nobel laureates Paul Samuelson, Robert Solow and Edmund Phelps
  • Highly accessible essays identify what encourages growth and what holds it back


'This volume contains an important set of papers by leading scholars explaining why entrepreneurship matters. By focusing on the role of entrepreneurship in innovation and economic growth and on how public policy can support this role, this book provides useful insights and an excellent overview. It will be a valuable source of information and inspiration for economists interested in entrepreneurship and growth for years to come.'
-- Bo Carlsson, Case Western Reserve University

'Acs, Audretsch, and Strom have assembled an extraordinary group of contributors to share their insights into one of the most important - and previously neglected - policy topics of our time. Anyone concerned with economic growth over the long term ought to read it.'
-- David M. Hart, George Mason University

'With globalisation under threat, and public expenditure under scrutiny, it is essential that the links between scientific research, technological innovation, entrepreneurship, and productivity growth are widely understood. This timely and authoritative book addresses this need. Re-focusing economic analysis from the accumulation of physical capital to the accumulation of knowledge capital, it restores entrepreneurship and small firm growth to their rightful place at the centre of economic policy debate about international competitiveness.'
-- Mark Casson, University of Reading



The Entrepreneurial Society

book cover


David B. Audretsch
Indiana University, Bloomington

Published by Oxford University Press (US / UK)
ISBN-10: 0-19-518350-9
ISBN-13: 978-0-19-518350-4
Hardbound, 248 pages: $29.95 / £17.99
Available at and other booksellers.

Your father enjoyed the security of lifelong employment with one company. You’ve switched jobs several times. Today’s youth will have four employers by the time they reach 30. In The Entrepreneurial Society, the next generation will either be self-employed or employed by a friend.

With globalization, where jobs and factories can be moved quickly to low-cost locations, the competitive advantage has shifted to ideas, insights, and innovation. If your job doesn’t contribute to innovation as yesterday’s technology is replaced, don’t expect to have that job much longer. The Entrepreneurial Society relies on individuals to create growth, jobs, and competitiveness.

In The Entrepreneurial Society, award-winning economist David B. Audretsch identifies the positive, proactive response to globalization: The Entrepreneurial Society, where change is the rule and routine work is inevitably outsourced. Under the managed economy of the cold war era, government policies around the world supported big business, while small business was deemed irrelevant and largely ignored. The author documents the fundamental policy revolution currently underway. As communities shift support to technology and knowledge-based entrepreneurship, the resulting start-ups have emerged as the driving force for economic growth and job creation. Universities have moved from the economic sidelines to a highly valued seedbed of new ideas with the potential to create not just breathtaking new ventures but also entire new industries. By understanding and managing the shift from the managed economy to The Entrepreneurial Society, individuals, businesses, universities, and communities can learn how to proactively harness the opportunities afforded by globalization.

Editorial Reviews

"The Entrepreneurial Society is a guided tour of economic opportunity by a man who knows equally well the languages of businesses and universities, Europe and the United States, history and politics, Bob Dylan and the literature of technical economics. David Audretsch has something interesting to say about all of it."
--David Warsh, author, Knowledge and the Wealth Of Nations: A Story of Economic Discovery and editor,

"The Industrial Society of the 1950s and 60s is over. In its place is emerging a new Entrepreneurial Society and culture. How can business adapt? Which countries and regions will win and lose? What does it mean for you? David Audretsch provides the answers in this important book."
--Richard Florida, author, Rise of the Creative Class

"Dave Audretsch understands entrepreneurship. In The Entrepreneurial Society he rationalizes the history, causes and significance of entrepreneurship as the current driving force behind America's successful return to global financial leadership. He also outlines the threats we face from abroad, again, if we fail to recognize the world is reshaping itself to compete on our knowledge turf. Once only a punchline to describe the maverick behavior of Silicon Valley, Audretsch has brought entrepreneurship permanently into the shared spotlight of academic research, public policy and, most importantly, global corporate strategy. His book is a first."
--Jack Harding, President and CEO, eSilicon Corporation

"With insight and clarity, Audretsch describes the sweeping transformation of the American economy over the past two decades. Adroitly weaving together social, economic, and cultural changes, he chronicles the demise of the bureaucratic "managed" economy. The dawn of the "entrepreneurial society" in its place carries far-reaching consequences, and Audretsch's book serves as an important guide to exploring them."
--Carl J. Schramm, President and CEO, The Kauffman Foundation

With one foot in Germany and the other in the U.S., Audretsch is in a unique position to show what does and does not make an economy tick. Appearing in an era when India, Brazil, China and Russia loom, this book is mandatory reading for scholars of U.S. competitiveness and Eurosclerosis both. Listen to Audretsch".
--Amity Shlaes, Syndicated Columnist, Bloomberg

"In The Entrepreneurial Society, Audretsch makes a valuable contribution to understanding contemporary America by charting the rise of entrepreneurship as the critical force in driving American economic preeminence. He contributes to our economic future by outlining what American policy makers and average citizens must do to continue to stoke this force."
--Randall Kempner, Vice President, Regional Innovation, Council on Competitiveness

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