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Freel, Mark

Freel, Mark

Vice-Dean (Career Development), RBC Financial Group Professor in the Commercialization of Innovation
Full Professor
M.A. (Glasgow), M.Sc. (Paisley), Ph.D. (Aberdeen)
DMS 6110
613-562-5800 x 4733
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Research Areas
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Innovation
  • Small Business
  • Technology and Innovation Management


Dr. Mark Freel is a full professor at the Telfer School of Management in the area of innovation and entrepreneurship. He is a recognized researcher and has undertaken different projects on behalf of European regional, national and supra-national government bodies. Additionally, he has been awarded several grants from charities and research councils to study different aspects of entrepreneurship, innovation policy and strategy in the context of specific communities in Britain. He brings to the University of Ottawa 10 years of teaching, research and consultancy experience garnered at the Universities of Edinburgh, Aberdeen, Warwick and Paisley (all in the UK).

His current research is concerned with innovation policy and practice in relation to small and medium sized firms, and with the role of universities in innovation systems. Dr. Freel has co-authored one textbook on entrepreneurship and small firms (McGraw-Hill, now in its 4th edition), and has published several book chapters and more than 20 articles in leading academic journals such as Small Business Economics, the International Journal of Innovation Management, the International Small Business Journal and Research Policy.

Publications during the last 7 years


Deakins, D. and Freel, M.S. Entrepreneurship and Small Firms. London, UK: McGraw-Hill, 2012.

Doloreux, D., Freel, M.S. and Shearmur, R. Knowledge-Intensive Business Services (KIBS): Geography and Innovation. Surrey, UK: Ashgate Economic Geography Series, 2010.

Chapters in Books

Robson, P.J., Chamberlin, T. and Freel, M.S. Built to grow? Exploring the drivers of initial capitalization. In Smallbone, D., Sauka, A. and Virtanen, M.. Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Regional Development . London, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing, Inc., 2017.

Freel, M.S. Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Small Firms. In de Clercq, D. and Blackburn, R.. The Sage Handbook of Small Business and Entrepreneurship. Sage, 2016.

Freel, M.S. and Doloreux, D. KIBS Users and Uses: Exploring the propensity to innovation-related cooperation with Knowledge-Intensive Business Services. In Doloreux, D., Freel, M.S. and Shearmur, R.. KIBS: Geography and Innovation. Ashgate, 2010.

Doloreux, D., Freel, M.S. and Shearmur, R. Introduction. In Doloreux, D., Freel, M.S. and Shearmur, R.. Knowledge Intensive Business Services (KIBS): Geography and Innovation. Ashgate, 2010.

Papers in Refereed Journals

Rostamkalaei, A. and Freel, M.S. 2017. Business advice and lending in small firms. Environment and Planning C: Government & Policy.

Berchicci, L., de Jong, J.P. and Freel, M.S. 2016. Remote collaboration and innovative performance: the moderating role of R&D intensity. Industrial and Corporate Change, 25(3): 429-446.

Freel, M.S. and Robson, P.J. 2016. Appropriation strategies and open innovation in SMEs. International Small Business Journal.

Rostamkalaei, A. and Freel, M.S. 2016. The cost of growth: Small firm and the pricing of bank loans. Small Business Economics, 46(2): 255-272.

Wang, J., Robson, P.J. and Freel, M.S. 2015. The Financing of Small Firms in Beijing, China: Exploring the Extent of Credit Constraints. Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, 22(3): 397-416.

Freel, M.S., Robson, P.J. and Jack, S. 2014. Risk capital constraints to innovation in services. Journal of Business and Industrial Marketing, 29(6): 476-486.

Freel, M.S., Carter, S., Tagg, S. and Mason, C. 2012. The Latent Demand for Bank Debt: Characterizing 'Discouraged Borrowers'. Small Business Economics, 38(4): 399-418.

Freel, M.S. and Wiig-Aslesen, H. 2012. Industrial knowledge-bases as drivers of open innovation. Industry and Innovation, 19(7): 563-584.

de Jong, J.P. and Freel, M.S. 2010. Absorptive Capacity and the Reach of Collaboration in High Technology Small Firms. Research Policy, 39(1): 47-54.

Invited Contributions and/or Technical Reports

Freel, M.S. 2012. "Intellectual Property Strategies and Challenges in Canadian Technology Firms", Industry Canada, n/a.

de Jong, J.P. and Freel, M.S. 2010. "Geographical distance of innovation collaborations", SCALES research reports. EIM, Zoetermeer, The Netherlands, n/a, 17 pages.

Funded Research during the last 7 years

Funded Research during the last 7 years
From-To Source Title * ** Role Amount
2017-2020 SSHRC The Fate of High Growth Firms R C PI $ 95,000
2015-2016 Fund for the Development of Academic Initiatives - Destination 2020 proposal The Entrepreneurship Foundry R I PI $ 40,000
2014-2016 Telfer School of Management Open Innovation and Firm Performance R I Co-I $ 4,000
2011-2012 Telfer School of Management Research Fund (SMRF) Understanding the Origins of Canadian Photonics Firms R I Co-I $ 4,000
2011 Industry Canada Strategic behaviour relating to patenting and the effects on Canadian Business R G PI $ 24,900
2009-2010 Telfer School of Management (4A SSHRC Program) Entrepreneurial Recycling: A Research Agenda R I Co-I $ 4,000
2008-2012 SSHRC Complexity, Novelty and Innovation Networking in Small Firms R C PI $ 88,919
2008-2011 SSHRC - Research in Management, Business and Finance Commercial Lending and R&D-Intensive SMEs R C Co-I $ 65,000

*Purpose = C: Contract (R and D), E: Equipment Grant, R: Research Grant, S: Support Award, P: Pedagogical Grant, O: Other, U: Unknown

**Type= C: Granting Councils, G: Government, F: Foundations, I: UO Internal Funding, O: Other, U: Unknown

Role: PI = Principal Investigator, Co-I = Co-Investigator, Co-PI = Co-Principal Investigator