George Tsekouras

George Tsekouras

Dr, DPhil, Director of CENTRIM


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Personal profile

Research interests

George has led research on innovation and entrepreneurship. His research includes themes such as managing open innovation in Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs); linking SMEs with the research base; enabling business development and innovation activities through peer-to-peer learning networks; empower SME growth through innovation coaching; innovation  for non-high tech SMEs; new product development strategies for SMEs; managing and supporting innovation in Social Enterprises; and the life cycle for SMEs. 

George has also worked in various other innovation areas of research such as innovation policies benchmarking, business processes engineering for SMEs and scenario foresight for innovation.


Scholarly biography

He was the co-ordinator of the INSPIRE project which investigated best practices for managing Open Innovation in SMEs with the aim to support the professionalization of Open Innovation within SMEs ( George was also the co-ordinator of the SPARK consortium which looked into the role of innovation in Social Enterprises ( 

He was also the co-ordinator of the RAPPORT consortium (, which looked at best practices to connect SMEs to the public research organisations as well as the Public-Private Innovation Partnrships to support innovation for SMEs. 

He also participated in several research projects (smE-MPOWER, Bio smE-MPOWER, CoachCom.2020) investigating the concept of innovation coaching for SMEs. The differences between innovation coaching and other forms of support (mentoring, consultancy etc.) as well as the relation and impact of innovation coaching on business development, organisational development and co-operation were among the issues investigated.  

Previsoulsy he participated in a number of research projects (ION, Knowlaboration, KLAB) investigating the phenomenon of learning networks, especially for the benefit of SMEs. The phenomenon of peer-to-peer learning was central to these considerations. 

George is the Innovation Track Leader for Innovation in the British Academy of Management (BAM). He has presented his work to various international conferences. He is also reviewer for international journals such as Research Policy, Organization Science and Industrial and Corporate Change. 

He has a first degree in mechanical engineering from National Technical University of Athens, a DPhil from SPRU.

Supervisory Interests

George has supervised several PhD students on topics including among others: Building innovation capabilities in SMEs through learning networks; the contribution of people with learning conditions to the innovation activities of small businesses; innovation skills and behaviours of employees in high-growth SMEs in the digital technology sector; the role of innovation coaching for innovative SMEs; and the development of technology-based start-ups in a developing economy.

George has an interest to supervise PhD students that explore the development of innovation activities and innovation capabilities within SMEs. All types of SMEs (technology-based, high-growth, low-and-medium tech etc.) are of interest. Both challenges of managing the innovation activities and their support are of interest.  

Knowledge exchange

George is the founder of the Profitnet programme which has included a number of peer-to-peer learning networks in UK, Ireland and South Africa with the participation of more than 2,000 SMEs around the world. The last evaluation exercise of the British Government (REF - Research Excellence Framework) rated the Profitnet programme as an international leading case ( Vinnova, the Swedish Agency for Innovation also found Profinet as a best practice for supporting innovation in SMEs.

George also worked for the CoachCom.2020 consortium that helped the Executive Agency for SMEs (EASME) to develop the innovation coaching scheme for the SME Instrument programme, the flagship EU programme to support innovative SMEs. This work included the development of tools for the innovation coaches, the development of training programme for the coaches, the establishmnt of processes to underpin the delivery of innovation coaching including a special web-based system. 

George is currently working closely with the Green Growth Platform ( to enable SMEs working in 'clean technologies' areas to innovate and grow. He is also working to develop special support for SMEs in the Digital sector together with public and private intermediaries. 

Approach to teaching

George is great supporter of teaching that makes a diffference. His teaching aims to be always interactive, engaging with the students in various ways. 

He has designed and delivered many executives training and consulting programmes on entrepreneurship around the world, including UK, Ireland, USA, Croatia, South Africa, Colombia, Greece and Cyprus. 

Education/Academic qualification

PhD, Integration, Organisation and Management: Investigating Capability Building, University of Sussex

1 Jan 199230 Aug 1999

Award Date: 30 Jan 2000

Master, Technology and Innovation Management, University of Sussex

Award Date: 31 Jan 1992

Bachelor, Mechanical Engineering, National Technical University of Athens

Award Date: 31 Jul 1990

External positions

Visiting Fellow, Xidian University

10 Jul 2019 → …

Chair of Innovation Special Interest Group (SIG), British Academy of Management - BAM

1 Mar 201531 Dec 2019

Innovation Track Leader, British Academy of Management - BAM

1 Jan 2010 → …


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