Date of Award


Document Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Business (Research)


Business and Social Studies

First Advisor

Breda O'Dwyer


Campus incubators catalyse campus enterprise development by encouraging Third Level “spin offs”, commercialisation of research and facilitating “spin-in” enterprises. They provide academic staff, graduates and “spin-in” entrepreneurs with a range of support services including space, advice, training, mentoring and networking opportunities. The real value of a campus incubator location for clients is their association with a reputable Third level Institute and access to the Institute’s resources namely academic staff, embedded knowledge, manager’s expertise and enterprise netvyorks. The researcher explored literature on campus and business incubators and identified a lacuna of research on campus incubation, particularly within Irish Higher Education Institutes. Using a best practice framework of business incubators, developed by Rice and Matthews (1995), the researcher investigated current practice of four Irish campus incubators to determine if they encompass such best practice features. From the analysis of the research results, the researcher proposes a best practice framework for campus incubators applicable to the Institute of Technology sector. Whilst acknowledging that this framework cannot be applied generically to all Institutes given their individual focus and the regional factors at play, this research is a first step towards best practice of campus incubators within the sector. The research recommendations will inform key players within the Institute of Technology sector how to optimise campus incubators to stimulate and support campus and regional enterprise development. The research also identified four specific research questions which are worthy of further research and would advance the field of campus incubation research in a meaningful manner.

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