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Business Advice, Public Support & the Supply Chain

Aims, results & dissemination

This project developed an in-depth analysis of how business advice is sought and used, and its impact on the business. This project built on and, in its focus on internal business characteristics of advice users, was complementary to the work carried out in the CBR in the past. It made use of CBR survey results obtained in 1999, and subsequent case studies to provide a detailed examination of the process of seeking and obtaining advice. The project was particularly concerned with the way in which this process is mediated through the internal management organisation of firms, as well as with the extent of geographical localization and interactions between firms in the supply chain. It also located and assessed the role of publicly supported advice sources within the general market for information and advice. The project was completed in the autumn of 2001 (before the current reporting period). During 2002-2004 a number of papers which had previously been reported as forthcoming were published.

Working papers

Bennett, R.J., Bratton, W.J.A. and Robson, P.J.A. (2000) Business Advice: The influence of distance.CBR Working Paper No. 167, June.

Bennett, R.J. and Robson, P.J.A. (2000) The Small Business Service: Business support, use, fees and satisfaction: econometric estimates. CBR Working Paper No. 181, September.

Bennett, R., Robson, P. and Bratton, W. (2000) The influence of location on the use by SMEs of external advice and collaboration: detailed econometric estimates.CBR Working Paper No. 190, December.

Bennett, R. and Robson, P. (2001) Changing use of external business advice and government supports by SMEs in the 1990s. CBR Working Paper No. 210, September.

Bennett, R.J. and Robson, P.J.A. (2000) Government advice networks for SMEs: An assessment of the influence of local context On Business Link use, impact and satisfaction.CBR Working Paper No. 182, September.

Journal articles

Bennett, R.J. and Robson, P.J.A (forthcoming) 'The advisor-SME client relationship: an empirical test of a model of client impact, satisfaction and commitment, Small Business Economics.

Bennett, R.J. and Robson, P.J.A (2004) 'The role of boards of directors in small and medium-sized firms', Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, 11 (1), 95-113. (This paper awarded the Emerald Literati award 2005 for the best paper in JSBED for 2004)

Bennett, R. J. and Robson, P. J. A. (2004) Support services for SMEs: does the ‘franchisee’ make a difference to the Business Link offer?, Environment and Planning C: Government and Policy

Bennett, R.J. and C, Smith (2004) The selection and control of management consultants by small business clients, International Small Business Journal, 22(5) 435-462.

Bennett, R.J. and Robson, P.J.A. (2003) ‘Changing use of external business advice and government support by SMEs in the 1990s’, Regional Studies, 37: 795-811

Bennett, R.J. and Smith, C. (2003) ‘The spatial market of business advice and consultancy to SMEs’, Journal of Computers, Environment and Urban Systems, 27: 309-33

Bennett, R and Smith, C (2002) ‘Competitive conditions, competitive advantage and the location of SME’s’, Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development 9(1), 73-86

Bennett, R and Smith, C (2002) ‘The influence of location and distance on the supply of business advice’, Environment and Planning A, 34, 251-270

Bennett, R and Smith, C (2002) 'Competitive conditions, competitive advantage and the location of SME's', Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, 9(1), 73-86

Bennett, R and Smith, C (2002) 'The influence of location and distance on the supply of business advice', Environment and Planning A, 34, 251-270.

Bennett, R.J., Bratton, W.J.A. and Robson, P.J.A. (2000) 'Business advice: The influence of distance', Regional Studies, 34 (9), 813-828.

Bennett, R.J., Robson, P.J.A. and Bratton, W.J.A. (2000) 'Government advice networks for SMEs: an assessment of the influence of local context on Business Link use, impact and satisfaction', Applied Economics.

Bennett, R.J. and Robson, P. (2000) 'The Small Business Service: Local service use, fees and satisfaction', Policy Studies.

Project leader

Robert Bennett

Research fellows

Colin Smith
Paul Robson

Project status

Completed