Urban leaders who would like to create new jobs and better revenues may want to think high tech. That’s the advice of Bruce Kirchhoff, PhD, distinguished professor of management at New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT), who believes there are many good reasons today for businesses to turn high tech and for the government to support their efforts.
“High tech start-up businesses create more net new jobs per firm than any other category of start-up businesses,” said Kirchhoff. “They create more than twice the number of innovations per employee compared to larger firms. Recent surveys of micro- and nano-technology businesses show that small firms bring technology to the market in half the time that it takes a larger firm to do the same.”
Kirchhoff has been telling his tale in the U.S. as well as around the world. A few weeks ago, he lectured leaders of economic development in the Netherlands; last month, he delivered a similar talk to people involved in micro and nano-technology in the U.S. Kirchhoff is a former chief economist for the U.S. Small Business Administration (USBA).
At both talks, Kirchhoff noted the importance of the U.S. Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. “The program which was conceived in 1976, is the mechanism in the U.S. for financing new technology and launching new high-tech businesses,” he said. NOTE TO EDITORS: Kirchhoff is available for interviews. Call Sheryl Weinstein 973-596-3436 for details.
Kirchhoff noted that the level of university human capital has a minor influence on job creation. “University research and development influences new firm formations and employment,” he said. “On the other hand, university research and development expenditures can influence new firm formations. This suggests that new firms are formed by spill-over from university research and development.
Kirchhoff directs the Technological Entrepreneurship Program at NJIT. He has served as director of the Center for Entrepreneurship and Public Policy at Fairleigh Dickinson University, and as director of research in Babson College's Entrepreneurship Center. Kirchhoff earned his PhD in business administration from the University of Utah where he also earned an MBA. He received a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from Case Western Reserve University.
Kirchhoff authored Entrepreneurship and Dynamic Capitalism, The Economics of Business Firm Formation and Growth (Prager, 1994). The book describes how entrepreneurship contributes to economic growth.
The SBIR program directs government agencies with research and development funding to spend a portion of their funds on small businesses with technology proposals. It was conceived after the first study on innovation in 1976 showed that small firms were the most productive innovators.