Academic founders of university spinouts: Reconciling Mode 1 and Mode 2 logics of knowledge production through nested referents of legitimacy

Date

2014-07-05

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Conference

Peer reviewed

No

Abstract

This paper explores how academic inventors who have been involved in university spinout formation negotiate their use of the apparently contradictory logics of academic and commercial science – operationalized as Mode 1 and Mode 2, respectively. Interviews with 18 academic inventors from top research universities in the UK suggest that the two logics are not in a binary contradiction. As they work at the interface of industry and academia, academic inventors are both motivated and governed by components drawn from two different logics in a conditional, context-dependent manner. While they incorporate social accountability as a desired function of academic research, inventors are simultaneously controlled by the traditional norm of what constitutes good science. In other words, they embed an extended reference point for legitimacy (society) under the academic one (peer community) albeit in an asymmetrical way, as scientific legitimacy still reigns supreme. We suggest how alternative practices are attainable yet governable through non-adversarial framing of competing logics, dialectical responses, and referents of legitimacy.

Description

Keywords

Legitimacy, Institutional logics, Public science, Mode 2, Spinout

Citation

Klangboonkrong, Y. and Jenkins, M. (2014) Academic founders of university spinouts: Reconciling Mode 1 and Mode 2 logics of knowledge production through nested referents of legitimacy. 30th EGOS Colloquium, Rotterdam, 3-5 July 2014.

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Research Institute

Centre for Enterprise and Innovation (CEI)