SUSTAINING LOOSE COMMUNITIES THROUGH PARTICIPANT ENGAGEMENT: THE CASE OF INNOCAMPUS ACCELERATOR PROGRAM

2021-9-6
Kardar, Yashar
Alongside the growing interest in entrepreneurship, accelerators and their role in entrepreneurship ecosystems and the success of entrepreneurs is increasingly being explored and studied. However, the social dynamics present in these programs and their role on the sustainability of the impact they have on the continued development of alumni have been relatively overlooked in the literature. The aim of the study is to explore and understand factors influencing continued alumni engagement with accelerator programs in the case of the Innocampus accelerator program. This study explores participant engagement in the Innocampus accelerator program before, during, and after their graduation from the participants’ perspective. This thesis also examines whether or not these engagements lead to the development of communities of practice that influence alumni development. In order to understand these, semi-structured interviews have been conducted with the alumni of the Innocampus accelerator program, and they have been asked about their experiences and reflections on the subject of study. Three major conclusions have been derived from the study. First, post-program engagement of the Innocampus alumni with the organization is influenced by the dynamics developed through their experiences in joining Innocampus and during their participation in the program, combined with experiences and interactions after the program with Innocampus and its network. Second, the expectations and motivations of alumni continue to change in different stages towards the organization and the network. Third, as a result of the existing network structure, alumni engagement continues inside the network in the form of a loose community.

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Citation Formats
Y. Kardar, “SUSTAINING LOOSE COMMUNITIES THROUGH PARTICIPANT ENGAGEMENT: THE CASE OF INNOCAMPUS ACCELERATOR PROGRAM,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2021.