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Chapter 3. Managing Technological Evolution

Chapter 3. Managing Technological Evolution

While the previous chapter indicated that technological change is a source of entrepreneurial opportunity, the discussion was incomplete. Responding to the right type of technological change is as important, if not more important for successful technology entrepreneurship, than is responding to technological change in general. Successful technological entrepreneurship requires a focus on technological transitions.

This focus on technological transitions is important because, most of the time, entrepreneurs target the wrong type of technological change to establish their new businesses. They start their businesses to exploit incremental change. By focusing on incremental change, entrepreneurs often find that they cannot compete with established firms and fail. What successful technology entrepreneurs have come to realize is that, to be successful, new ventures need to target technological transitions, points when an industry is shifting from one basic technology to another, such as when the printing industry shifted from hot lead linotype machines to cold off-set printing generated by computers.


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