When innovative research fails: exploring the role of principal investigators

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Morgan Boyce (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/
Albert Link

Abstract: There is a small but growing body of literature that examines the role of principal investigators in publicly funded R&D projects. In this dissertation I discuss the literature on principal investigators and R&D project failure and found there is limited intersection between the two. I provide a theoretical model in this dissertation which explains how firm characteristics, including those of the principal investigator, impact the probability of failure. The theoretical model serves as a structural form model to motivate the empirical analysis which assesses the probability of failure in small technology-based firms that received a Phase II award from the Department of Energy’s Small Business Innovation Research program. Using a Probit model, I estimate a reduced form specification of the structural model to estimate the probability a firm will experience failure conditional on characteristics of the principal investigator and the firm. I found that prior experience of the firm with a similar technology, university faculty involvement, and the age of the principal investigator are negatively associated with project failure. I also found a positive relationship between failure and firms where the principal investigator was the sole founder and CEO of the firm.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2021
Innovation, Principal Investigator, Research Failure, SBIR
United States. $b Department of Energy. $b Small Business Innovation Research Program
Research and development contracts, Government $z United States
Small business $x Technological innovations $z United States
Small business $x Risk management $z United States

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