The motivations, institutions and organization of university-industry collaborations in the Netherlands

Isabel Maria Bodas Freitas, Bart Verspagen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


This study builds on the economics and organization literatures to explore whether and how institutions and organizational structure complement or substitute each other to create specific spaces of alignment where specific individual actors’ motivations co-exist. Focusing on university-industry collaborations, the study examines whether and how different axes of alignment of university and industry motivations are integrated in projects with specific technological objectives and organizational structures, benefitting from the presence of specific institutions designed to facilitate collaboration. Empirically, the study relies on in-depth data on 30 university-industry collaborations in the netherlands, and provides preliminary evidence that the technological objective and organizational structure of collaboration are malleable variables allowing the integration of both partners’ objectives and expectations. Different institutional incentives for university-industry collaboration favor specific axes of alignment of motivations and certain types of collaborative projects’ design. Hence, our exploratory results suggest that specific organizational and technological structures tend to prevail in the presence of specific institutions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)379-412
JournalJournal of Evolutionary Economics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2017


  • Incentives
  • Motivations alignment
  • Organization
  • University-industry collaboration
  • Innovation policy


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