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Business Innovation Centers as communities of entrepreneurs: the Sachsen project

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The economics of social communities. Beside the theory of learning we agree on, ... information tools (search engines, selections of classified documents, yellow ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Business Innovation Centers as communities of entrepreneurs: the Sachsen project


1
Business Innovation Centers as communities of
entrepreneursthe Sachsen project
Seminar Community Networks for the Local Economy
Development
Stefano Micelli University Ca Foscari of
Venice e.mail micelli_at_unive.it
Milan, 11 February 1999
2
The economics of social communities
The concept of community has become a buzzword in
the business community.
  • Beside the theory of learning we agree on, do we
    have an effective economic theory about (virtual)
    communities?

3
The WINT community
  • The WINT project has been conceived by the
    Business Development Center Sachsen to achieve
    two main goals
  • Rethinking coaching tools for the development of
    new local entrepreneurs facing growing economic
    and technological complexity
  • Lowering training costs by empowering final
    users, assigning them a key role in the system
    design

Key word community of practice
4
The evolving role of WINT members
Community life cycle
Entrepreneur role
Firm life cycle
  • Conception
  • Take off
  • Business Development

The business idea is presented and discussed
External
1. Step admission insidethe community
User
The entrepreneur and a dedicatedcoaching team
redefine the project
2. Step coaching
Key player
The firm grows and developsits presence on
relevant market
3. Step proactive role
5
WINT community management tools
  • The community offers a bundle of services that
    can be divided as follows
  • information tools (search engines, selections of
    classified documents, yellow pages, collaborative
    filtering)
  • cooperation spaces (on line consulting,
    personalized document workflow management,
    restricted discussion groups, explicitly managed
    discussion groups)

6
WINT community members
7
The Web interface 1/2
8
The Web interface 2/2
9
WINT the groupware and the web
10
Results from the pilot program
Guidelines for development
Empirical evidence
  • The entrepreneurs actively participated to
    community life, contributing to archives
    development.
  • Experts and consultants played a key role in
    activating users participation
  • The most used services communication and
    interaction areas where dialogues are
    continuously edited.
  • An active community requires a considerable
    management effort.
  • The activity of content certification by
    community managers is fundamental to catch users
    attention.
  • A considerable part of community management
    should be dedicated to interfacing other
    communities.

11
The Leeds Virtual Science Park
  • The Leeds Virtual Science Park (VSP), an
    initiative of the University of Leeds provides an
    on-line, Web-based environment for its tenants.
  • The VSP uses a familiar physical metaphor as
    its interface. Clients rent space on the Park in
    order to set up a tenancy to support the
    development of their business.
  • Services offered include Knowledge Resource
    Rooms, On-line tutorial support, Group discussion
    forums, Offices for academic and industrial
    mentors, Access to the full range of expertise
    and knowledge resources publicly available within
    the VSP

12
One of the Virtual Rooms of the VSP Leeds
13
The BarcelonaNetActiva experience
  • Barcelona Activa - a private municipal company
    from Barcelona City Council - has created a
    Virtual Busines Incubator, a web-based tool for
    innovation and knowledge
  • This community provides its tenants with four
    main service areas
  • information databases
  • business cooperation systems
  • distance learning environments
  • community services

14
The Portal of BarcelonaNetActiva
15
A converging path
  • Virtual Business Innovation Centers seem to be
  • strongly rooted in a specific geographical area
  • activated by end users eager to share business
    experience with other entrepreneurs facing
    similar experiences
  • managed with a constant support a well equipped
    back office
  • focus on users learning experience to provide
    newcomers with the older entrepreneurs experience
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