Reflections from SME Growth and Performance: Quantitative Perspectives
track chair, Professor Stephen Roper
Seven papers were presented in this Track with two main interlinking themes: context and dynamics. Analyses relating both to self-employment and innovation across European firms emphasised the role of context in shaping firms’ growth trajectory. Both emphasised the challenge of capturing local opportunities, and resources and their contribution to business growth and performance.
The importance of context was also emphasised in studies of small firms in developing economies. Significant challenges remain linking context and performance.
Other studies both at the intra-firm and firm level emphasised the dynamics of growth. Debate centred on whether fast growth firms actually exist or whether what we observe instead are firms experiencing fast growth episodes.
The policy and business support implications of the distinction were discussed in some detail with the need for intelligence-led support emphasised.