Why say no to innovation? Evidence from industrial SMEs in European Union


  • Nuno Miguel Castanheira Carvalho Universidade de Coimbra
  • Zornitsa Yordanova University of National and World economy




innovation, SME, industry, European Union, non-innovative enterprises


This paper aims at presenting the results from a research on the reasons why more than 50% of the small and medium size enterprises (SMEs) in European Union (EU) are non-innovative. The paper intends to find out which are the specific factors that influence the percentage of non-innovative industrial SMEs, considering that SMEs are the main stakeholders and target group of EU funds and policies, and industry is the main direction for economic development. The study employs a cross-sectional study and linear regressions. The findings after applying the research methodology show some already known factors that obstruct SMEs innovation performance like lack of internal finance and little market competition. However, the main contribution of the research is the finding that a low market demand does not contribute to an increase in the percentage of non-innovative enterprises. As a conclusion, all the measures and EU programs for boosting market demand for the purposes of increasing the number of innovative enterprises would be useless.


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Author Biographies

Nuno Miguel Castanheira Carvalho, Universidade de Coimbra

Nuno Carvalho has a graduation in Economics and another in Administration. He has a Master's degree in Management with specialization in Entrepreneurship and Innovation and is currently a PhD student in Management and works as project manager at University of Coimbra. His research interests are innovation, entrepreneurship, knowledge management and e-Government.

Zornitsa Yordanova, University of National and World economy

Zornitsa B. Yordanova has received her PhD in the area of Business Innovations management in the University of National and World economy, Sofia, Bulgaria and now she is an Assistant Professor there. Her research interest includes innovation management, business innovations, project management, innovation projects, enterprise management, management information systems and enterprise software. She is also certified as PMP® and CSM® in the area of project management.


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How to Cite

Carvalho, N. M. C., & Yordanova, Z. (2018). Why say no to innovation? Evidence from industrial SMEs in European Union. Journal of Technology Management & Innovation, 13(2), 43–56. https://doi.org/10.4067/S0718-27242018000200043



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