chapter  5
25 Pages

The Role and Importance of Gazelles and Other Growth Firms for Innovation and Competitiveness: Mercedes Bleda, Kathryn Morrison and John Rigby


This chapter focuses on the study of the role and importance of small, high-growth fi rms for innovation and competitiveness, and the way in which policy support can stimulate their further development and growth. The chapter begins with a discussion of how these fi rms (usually known as gazelles) have become a policy priority area. Gazelles are placed in the policy context and rationales for policy support are examined. The issue of what defi nitions are used in this area is a key one. By varying size and growth criteria in the defi nition of a gazelle fi rm, it is possible to defi ne various sets of growth fi rms, each of which have fundamentally diff erent characteristics and policy requirements. We examine these defi nitional issues and consider the ways in which policymakers should address support for gazelle fi rms. We put forward the diffi culties of defi ning precise and eff ective policies and illustrate the diff erent measures used so far in a variety of countries.