Review of 20 Business Incubation Models – Jones’s Incubation Value Chain Model_2010 (Part 16 of 20)

Today I will continue blogging about models of Business Incubators. Jones’ model is a very simple but powerful model. It’s among those models (Booz, et al model and Carter & Jones-Evans model) that links time, and practices that incubator apply in order to move ventures along their life cycles. The interesting point about this model is how authors tried to match those practices along the life cycle.

2010, Jones, process, external, operations

Jones’s Incubation Value Chain Model (2010)

The Incubation Value Chain Model[1] is a first comprehensive approach to link incubation process to the processes in the innovation ecosystem and entrepreneur’s life cycle. Firstly, Jones separated the process into several stages:

1)     Pre-incubation. This stage is not leaded directly by incubator. It is here initial training, planning and research support for would-be entrepreneur is delivered.

2)     Early-stage incubation. This is classical stage of any incubator which includes funding access, business support, marketing, mentoring, financial and accounting services, accommodation, etc. This stage is no longer than a year. Most accelerators work in the early-stage incubation stage.

3)     Classic incubation. Serious stage that lasts about 2-3 years with the access to services and resources of typical business incubator.

4)     Graduate program. After graduation entrepreneurs or companies could get support in special business support programs or get some benefits from government in tax and financial sphere.

Second and the main point of the model is that Jones considers business incubator as a part of a value chain which allows us to think about long-term goals of the innovation system in the whole. Later I will introduce my model of business incubation that shows it in a system engineering manner. First part of it we have already introduced here.

Summary of the model

Important conclusion that should be made from this model is:

  • business incubation or venture development is step-by-step process that should be addressed by different development institutions on each stage: from ideation phase till later stage of the venture.
  • Matching venture’s development stages with incubation stages helps us understand needs of ventures on the one hand, and propose particular business incubation services on the other hand.
Source (Author, Year): Jones, 2010
Purpose of a model: To present an incubation value chain
Type of a model: Process model (value chain)
Abstraction technique: Black-box
Theoretical background: No information
Resources: Incubator resources, pre-incubation support services, graduate programs.
Processes and practices: 4 stages:1)     Pre-incubation2)     Early-stage incubation

3)     Classic incubation

4)     Graduate programme

Efficiency and effectiveness: No information
Linkages “Entrepreneur – Business Incubator – Innovation Ecosystem”: Incubation process directly linked to the external environment via promotion of entrepreneurship and links to business networks, service providers. On the other hand there is a support for entrepreneur on the each stage of its life cycle.
Key contribution: Business incubation is viewed as a part of a value chain.

[1] Ewan, Jones M, 2010: How to Create an Award Winning Incubator? Presentation held at SBI Conference, Liverpool;

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