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Dr Allan O'Connor
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Allan O'Connor purchased his first business venture at 18 years of age to support his career development in mechanical engineering with John Lysaght (Australia) Ltd. Allan later used this venture to explore a career as a professional musician; teaching, performing and participating in a Jazz studies program at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, one of the oldest and most prestigious music schools in Australia. Returning to engineering, Allan worked in Business Development functions primarily in the mechanical services sector for a number of small and medium enterprises. Being involved and leading the development and introduction of new products, opening of new markets, and expanding business opportunities for both established and new businesses, Allan achieved record sales levels and significant success in product development while enduring the harsh realities of innovation. Excelling in Regional Sales Management and with further experience of his own product and consulting businesses, Allan has been combining his industry experience with his academic credentials to lecture in entrepreneurship, strategic opportunities and managing strategic growth since 2001.
Allan's academic qualifications in entrepreneurship include a Master degree in Enterprise Innovation and a PhD in the field of entrepreneurship education and public policy for economic development. In 2008 Allan joined the Entrepreneurship, Commercialisation and Innovation Centre (ECIC) to lead the development and growth of the Master of Applied Innovation and Entrepreneurship and its nested degree programs at the University of Adelaide which is now recognised as a leading international entrepreneurship program. Allan stepped down from this role at the end of 2016 to focus on research development activities.
The ECIC's mission is to foster innovation through entrepreneurship, commercialisation, and project management, research, teaching, and community and industry engagement activities. Allan's research at the ECIC involves inquiry at the intersections between entrepreneurship, innovation and socioeconomic development. During his time at the ECIC Allan has worked closely with South Australian government stakeholders to contribute research on South Australian entrepreneurship and innovation by leading the establishment of the Australian Cluster Observatory in 2014, being instrumental in establishing South Australia's annual Entrepreneur Week program, publishing an edited volume on Integrating Innovation in South Australia in 2015, and pioneering research on entrepreneurial ecosystems during 2015/2016. Stemming from this work Allan is considered an expert on entrepreneurial ecosystems recognised on the international stage being invited to deliver presentations and keynote addresses overseas (such as Japan, Spain and Indonesia) and in Australia. Allan has recently been invited to lead an editorial team for a Special Issue on Entrepreneurial Ecosystems for the Small Business Economics Journal and an editorial team for Springer International Publishing for their International Studies in Entrepreneurship series on Entrepreneurial Ecosystems: Place-based Transformations and Transitions.
Recognising Allan's experience and knowledge in entrepreneurship, Cengage Learning Australia, a leading academic text publisher, invited Allan to co-author Entrepreneurship: Theory, Process and Practice in 2011, the most comprehensive and widely sourced Asia Pacific text on entrepreneurship. Allan continues to update this text with regular new editions.
Mechanical Engineering Certificate, Graduate Diploma in Airconditioning, Graduate Diploma in Management, Master of Enterprise Innovation, PhD (Entrepreneurship)
Entrepreneurship and innovation have many components. Allan's main teaching interests are in opportunity assessment and entrepreneurial strategy. In 2012 he has co-authored one of the leading Asia Pacific texts on entrepreneurship 'Entrepreneurship: Theory, Process and Practice' with Howard Frederick and Donald Kuratko. For more information see the Cengage Australia site.
Allan's research interests include entrepreneurship education, policy and the intersections between entrepreneurship, innovation and socioeconomic development. More specifically, Allan's research utilises an intellectual capital analysis approach to examine regional development, organisational development and human capital development. Projects have involved working with the Centre for Regional Development at Swinburne University of Technology, Questacon (the National Institute for Science and Technology, Canberra), the Hargraves Institute, (a member's services organisation focussing on corporate innovation) and the Westpac Global Entrepreneurship Monitor Australia project in 2004 and 2005 serving as project manager, researcher and co-author.
The following is a short list of publications. For a full list of publications see the Files section below.
Refereed Journal Articles
Li, H., Corral de Zubielqui, G. & O’Connor A. (in press) ‘Entrepreneurial networking capacity of cluster firms: a social network perspective on how shared resources enhance firm performance’, Small Business Economics, accepted 24th March 2015.
Roos, G. & O’Connor A. 2015, ‘Government Policy Implications of Intellectual Capital: An Australian Manufacturing Case Study’, Journal of Intellectual Capital, Vol. 16, Iss. 2, pp. 364-389.
O’Connor, A., Du, K. & Roos, G. (in press) ‘The intellectual capital needs of a transitioning economy: A case study exploration of Australian sectoral changes’, Journal of Intellectual Capital, accepted 4th Dec, 2014.
Corral de Zubielqui, G., Lindsay, N. & O'Connor, A. 2014 ‘How product, operations, and marketing sources of ideas influence innovation and firm performance in Australian SMEs', International Journal of Innovation Management, Vol. 18, No. 2, Available at DOI: 10.1142/S1363919614500170.
Burton, K.N., O'Connor, A. & Roos G. 2013 ‘An empirical analysis of the IC Navigator approach in practice - A case study of five manufacturing firms', Knowledge Management Research and Practice, Vol. 11, pp. 162-174.
Foley, D. & O'Connor, A. 2013 ‘Social Capital and the Networking Practices of Indigenous Entrepreneurs', Journal of Small Business Management, Vol. 51, No. 2, pp. 276-296.
O'Connor, A. 2013 'A Conceptual Framework for Entrepreneurship Education Policy: Meeting Government and Economic Purpose, Journal of Business Venturing, Vol. 28, pp. 546-563.
O'Connor, A. & Greene F. 2012 'Is there an association between business and entrepreneurship education and differing entrepreneurial groupsin Australia? Evidence from GEM Australia', Small Enterprise Research, Vol. 19, Iss. 1, pp. 5-15.
Hindle, K., Yencken, J. & O'Connor, A. 2011 ‘An entrepreneurship policy framework for high-growth firms: navigating between policies for picking winners and market failure', International Journal of Entrepreneurial Venturing, Special Edition: Technological Entrepreneurship: Opportunity for High Growth Firms, Vol. 3, No. 4, pp. 324- 343.
O’Connor, A. & Yamin, S. 2011 ‘Innovation and Entrepreneurship: Managing the Paradox of Purpose in Business Model Innovation’, Int. J. Learning and Intellectual Capital, Vol. 8, No. 3, pp. 239-255.
O'Connor, A., Roos, G. & Vickers-Willis, T. 2007 ‘Evaluating the innovation capacity of a public sector organization: an Australian case study', European Journal of Innovation Management, Vol. 10, No 4, pp. 532-538.
O'Connor, A., Cherry, N. & Buckley P. 2007 ‘Defining entrepreneurship as a ‘domain of practice': Implications for theory and research for policy and education', International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business, Vol. 4, No. 5, pp. 654-678.
O'Connor, A. & Ramos, J. 2006 ‘Empowering Entrepreneurship Through Foresight And Innovation: Developing A Theoretical Framework For Empowerment In Enterprise Programs', Journal of Developmental Entrepreneurship, Vol. 11, No. 3, pp. 207-231.
Unpublished doctoral thesis
O'Connor, A. 2009 Enterprise, Education and Economic Development: An exploration of entrepreneurship's economic function in the Australian government's education policy, dissertation submission for the completion of the Doctor of Philosophy degree at The Australian Graduate School of Entrepreneurship, Swinburne University of Technology, Melbourne, Australia, June 2007.
O’Connor, A. (in press) ‘Questioning the ethics of university entrepreneurship curriculum’, in Hoskinson, S. & Kuratko, D. (Eds), ‘Advances in the Study of Entrepreneurship, Innovation, and Economic Growth, Vol 25, accepted 2nd Feb, 2015.
O’Connor, A. & Roos G. (2015) ‘Innovation and Entrepreneurship: Building the Systems and Strategies for South Australia’, in Roos, G. & O’Connor, A. (eds), Integrating Innovation: South Australian Entrepreneurship Systems and Strategies, The University of Adelaide Press: Adelaide, Australia. Available at: http://www.adelaide.edu.au/press/titles/integrating-innovation/.
Roos G. & O’Connor, A. (2015), ‘The idea of integrating innovation: entrepreneurship and a systems perspective’, in Roos, G. & O’Connor, A. (eds), Integrating Innovation: South Australian Entrepreneurship Systems and Strategies, The University of Adelaide Press: Adelaide, Australia. Available at: http://www.adelaide.edu.au/press/titles/integrating-innovation/.
Li, H. & O’Connor, A. (2015), ‘Do clusters matter to the entrepreneurial process? Deriving a Conceptual Model from the Case Study of Yalumba’, in Roos, G. & O’Connor, A. (eds), Integrating Innovation: South Australian Entrepreneurship Systems and Strategies, The University of Adelaide Press: Adelaide, Australia. Available at: http://www.adelaide.edu.au/press/titles/integrating-innovation/.
Corral DeZubielqui, G, Pi-Shen Seet , P. & O’Connor, A. (2015), ‘Intellectual Capital System Perspective: A Case Study of Government Intervention in Digital Media Industries’, in Roos, G. & O’Connor, A. (eds) , Integrating Innovation: South Australian Entrepreneurship Systems and Strategies, The University of Adelaide Press: Adelaide, Australia. Available at: http://www.adelaide.edu.au/press/titles/integrating-innovation/.
O’Connor, A., Corral De Zubielqui, G., Li, H. & Dissanayake, M. 2014, ‘Supporting Entrepreneurship in High Cost Economies: What Can Governments Do?’ in Roos, G. & Kennedy, N. (Eds) Global Perspectives on Achieving Success in High and Low Cost Operating Environments, IGI Global, Hershey, USA, pp. 290-392.
Balan-Vnuk, E., Dissanyake, M. & O'Connor A. 2014, ‘Policy analysis for entrepreneurship education in necessity-based contexts: A Sri Lankan case study', in Brewer J., Dwyer, G. & Gibson, S.W.(Eds) Necessity Entrepreneurs: Micro-enterprise and Economic Development, Edward Elgar Publishing Company, pp. 160-182.
Allan combines his qualifications and extensive industry experience to provide consulting services to institutions and organisations seeking to develop entrepreneurship and innovation capacities. Here's what one what recent client has said about his facilitation for a strategic management group on innovation:
"Thank you very much for facilitating Wednesday's workshop. The content was very good and the delivery and facilitation most professional. It achieved the objective we wanted and there was good follow on discussion by the team over dinner."
Cam Pearce | Director Business Development | Coopers Brewery Ltd
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