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Boulevard of Broken Dreams:
Why Public Efforts to Boost Entrepreneurship and Venture Capital Have Failed--and What to Do About It
Josh Lerner

Book Description | Table of Contents
Chapter 1 [in PDF format]


"Mr. Lerner provides more than a dozen rules of thumb for effective government intervention in the private sector."--Harry Hurt III, New York Times

"[A] useful book."--David Brooks, New York Times

"During economic turmoil, many look to the government to boost the economy by investing in entrepreneurship. But is that a good idea? Josh Lerner wrestles with that question in Boulevard of Broken Dreams, which considers the history of the public sector's involvement in entrepreneurship and venture capitalism--what's worked, from Silicon Valley to Singapore, and what's gone horribly awry. . . This book aims to steer policymakers in the right direction."--BizEd Magazine

"The book is instructive, well researched and contains some wise lessons from the past in terms of the government's role in promoting entrepreneurship and growth businesses. . . . [T]ake note, politicians and mandarins: this book can provide much-needed advice and perhaps a shortcut to developing more effective policies. . . . [R]ecommended reading to any local economic development practitioner who takes an interest in the big policy questions of today, and [it has] direct relevance to local economic development."--Glenn Athey, Local Economy


"This important, well-reasoned book reminds us in times of financial crisis that it is innovation and technical change in the real economy that is ultimately responsible for our prosperity--and that, alas, there are no silver bullets or simple policies to advance the process. Provocative, interesting, and useful."--Amar Bhidé, author of The Venturesome Economy

"Boulevard of Broken Dreams shows a deep understanding of the role of government in boosting entrepreneurship."--Sir Ronald Cohen, chairman of The Portland Trust and Bridges Ventures, and cofounder and former chairman of Apax Partners

"Boulevard of Broken Dreams is destined to be regarded as the classic study about how governments can succeed or fail in attempting to produce successful entrepreneurial environments and programs. All policymakers interested in achieving success--and avoiding failure--in encouraging entrepreneurial activity need to study and master the lessons described so eloquently by Josh Lerner."--David M. Rubenstein, cofounder and managing director of The Carlyle Group

"Innovation and entrepreneurship are incredibly important engines for economic growth. As governments around the world try to restart this engine in the wake of the global crisis, they will find this book to be an ideal guide."--Ken Wilcox, CEO of Silicon Valley Bank

"Such a cogent, well-reasoned explanation of the role of government policy--for good and ill--is long overdue. I hope that all audiences, whether policymakers, entrepreneurs, educators, or voters, will read and heed its advice."--Richard Kramlich, cofounder and general partner of New Enterprise Associates

"In this valuable and well-thought-out book, Lerner supports his astute observations with a wealth of clear models drawn from throughout the world. He provides striking examples in which governmental efforts to encourage entrepreneurial activity have been effective, along with other instances in which such efforts have fallen on their face and incurred high costs to society."--William J. Baumol, author of The Free-Market Innovation Machine

"This important and timely book will impact the ways policymakers think about venture capital and how to support it more effectively. The book is deeply rooted in economic research, leaves ideology behind, and focuses on facts. It explains complex economic analysis in simple terms and provides many useful examples to illustrate fundamental issues."--Thomas F. Hellmann, University of British Columbia

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File created: 4/21/2017

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