Our Genesis

UW Campus Spring Cherry Blossoms
UW Campus where the first WCRS symposium was held.

Given the importance of entrepreneurship in the global economy, the dramatic increase in demand for entrepreneurship education, and the growing acceptance of entrepreneurship scholarship as an academic discipline, interest in technology entrepreneurship is strong and growing among scholars based on the West Coast.

A primary driver is the proximity of the key universities to major regional clusters of young, technology-based firms in Seattle, Portland, San Francisco/Silicon Valley, Los Angeles/Orange County, and San Diego. Yet despite this importance and interest, technology entrepreneurship is a particularly challenging research area because it requires knowledge of both the dynamics of technology and innovation, and their interplay with launching and managing new firms.

Given this research challenge and growing interest in technology entrepreneurship, faculty from three universities – Suresh Kotha (University of Washington), Kathy Eisenhardt (Stanford University), and Alan Meyer (University of Oregon)  – initiated the ‘West Coast Research Symposium’ in Seattle in 2003.  Since then faculty from additional universities have joined the consortium – Nandini Rajagopalan (University of Southern California) in 2005, Kaye Schoonhoven (University of California, Irvine) in 2007, and most recently, Michael Lounsbury (University of Alberta, Canada) in 2015.