Research focus at the Bettany Centre for Entrepreneurship

The Bettany Centre works with entrepreneurs along the entire entrepreneurial life-cycle, linking our research, education and practice. The Centre's research areas are broad, reflecting individual scholarly interest and adding value to the cumulative knowledge in entrepreneurship. These include:

  • Entrepreneurial mindsets and behaviours
  • Entrepreneurial finance and de-risking ventures
  • Commercialisation of science and technology
  • Family business growth and succession
  • Social impact and social entrepreneurship/sustainability
  • Entrepreneurship in larger organisations
  • Entrepreneurial leadership/teams
  • Ecopreneurship
  • Entrepreneurial ecosystems
  • Business growth and decision making

This list is by no means exhaustive. However, we have a preference for research which is empirical in orientation and supported by robust analysis, whether this is quantitative or qualitative (using case-based methods). We seek to develop insights that can be published in high impact journals, provide thoughtful content for practitioners and enable our teaching and materials to remain at the forefront of the field.

Recent updates

PhD researcher Natasha Allden is presenting her work on Technology Transfer at the Doctoral Consortium at World Open Innovation Conference in Bilbao. Co-supervised by Professor Phil Longhurst.  .

PhD researcher Alejandro Terroba travelled from Argentina to Barcelona to present his paper “Answering the sustainability call: a qualitative systematic review on using management control systems to achieve sustainable goals” at the 12th Conference on Performance Measurement and Management Control September 13-15, 2023. Barcelona, Spain. Alejandro is supervised by Dr Monica Franco-Santos and Dr Richard Adams.

With Farrukh Qureshi and Professor Asta Pundziene, colleagues at Kaunas University of Technology, Lithuania, Dr Richard Adams has had a paper published in IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management - Appraising the transformation and future of Digital Multisided Platforms - A bibliometric analysis and systematic literature review.

Current research projects

SME NetZero project

In times of climate emergency, countries are marching towards NetZero emissions target. The UK is committed to achieving the NetZero target by 2050 (Gov.UK, 2021). It is widely recognised that this will require significant carbon emissions reductions from SMEs as they account for approximately half of total emissions from UK businesses (British Business Bank, 2022). However, a recent report by ONS (2021) suggests limited action is taken among SMEs with regard to achieving NetZero emissions. Therefore, it calls for researchers’ action to explore the underlying reasons that contribute to pro-NetZero actions among SMEs. Thus, this research project examines what influences UK SMEs’ taking actions towards achieving NetZero, particularly balancing their growth ambition with carbon reduction goals.

Entrepreneurial ecosystem

Entrepreneurial ecosystems have become increasingly popular as a concept for fostering entrepreneurship and economic growth among practitioners, policy makers and academics. Two projects have been carried out:

  1. Recognising the pivotal role of digital technologies in shaping contemporary business landscapes, the first facet of our project looks at the digitalisation of entrepreneurial ecosystems. This involves a comprehensive exploration of how technology, such as digital platforms and tools, influences entrepreneurial activities.
  2. The second project delves into the exogenous linkages of and between entrepreneurial ecosystems, shedding light on the factors that bind these ecosystems together. By examining interregional and global connectedness, we seek to unravel the complex dynamics and influences that drive collaboration, knowledge exchange, and adaptive strategies among diverse entrepreneurial hubs.

Corporate entrepreneurship

In today’s ever-changing business landscape, corporate entrepreneurship has been recognised as playing a key role in driving innovation, fostering adaptability, and ensuring sustained growth for organisations operating on a larger scale. This project is dedicated to investigating the key contributors to successful corporate entrepreneurial environments within large companies.

Past research projects

Flush with Success

The ‘Flush with Success’ roundtable on 14 June 2023 was co-hosted by Cranfield School of Management, Water & Sanitation for the Urban Poor and the Container Based Sanitation Alliance. It brought together more than 50 global sanitation experts, social entrepreneurs and researchers to share experiences of supporting a growth approach to addressing global WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) challenges. WASH-focused Small and Medium-Sized Social Enterprises need a precise customer value proposition to succeed. Balancing service quality and social goals, and private and public funding, can be complex. Social entrepreneurs need to be supported by and work with governments and international and local agencies to develop viable business and financing models.

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Keen logo


The “Knowledge-Empowered Entrepreneurship Network” was developed to position Kaunas University of Technology at the forefront of EU research in entrepreneurship. The overall objective of the KEEN project is to strengthen the research excellence of Kaunas University of Technology (Lithuania) in entrepreneurship, improve its capacities to exploit and disseminate its research outputs, and enhance its ability to engage the public in its research and entrepreneurship awareness, understanding, and acceptance.

Four European universities are involved in reaching objectives of KEEN project:

  • Kaunas University of Technology (Lithuania)
  • 果酱视频官网 (United Kingdom)
  • Bergische Universität Wuppertal (Germany) 
  • Universität St. Gallen (Switzerland)

Previous grants/funding partners

QTEC: Quantum Technology Enterprise Centre

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation: Business models for the Nano Membrane Toilet

Software Sustainability Institute: Computationally-supported approaches to content analysis in systematic review

British Academy / Leverhulme: Blockchain for Good