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UpStart BW by Horváth

Empowering early-stage entrepreneurs through data-driven research

UpStart key notes

  • Investigating early-phase startups of BW's eco system
  • Identification of startups with great social/ecological potential
  • Formulation of recommendations for founders, stakeholders and politics
  • Run time: 2023 to 2026

UpStart detailed

The project UpStart BW by Horváth aims to explore different aspects of Baden-Württemberg's (BW) startup landscape. Using modern methods of data collection, we aim to gain insights in this variable system, with the explicit goal of identifying and studying early-stage startups. Based on these insights, the UpStart BW team constructs a metric measuring startups on two dimensions: The degree to which a startup's goals and contributions improve our environment and society at large (Social Potential) and the startup's score on different factors of venture sucess (Success Potential).

Based on these metrics, new and existing startups can be continually (re-)evaluated based on their goals and performances. In addition to this data-driven approach, interviews with select founders from BW's startup landscape bring new perspectives into entrepreneurship research. This enables us to evaluate research hypotheses around startup success based on real-world data, as well as the formulation and evaluation of new theories around success factors.

Project goals

Core aim of the project is the generation of an overview over the startup landscape of BW, with a special focus on early-stage startups (defined as pre-Handelsregister registration). We draw special attention to startups wth high potential for societal improvements that up until now have not received their deserved attention based on a lack of (ex. financial) resources.

While the project's main focus lies on early-phase startup with high Social Potential scores, the collected data allow for general analyses of early-stage startups, as a wide variety of actors, ideas and industries are present in BW. This not only broadens the horizon of our analyses, but also enables deeper insights into the phenomenon of startup founding. Additionally, incorporationg time as a dimension into the project and the focus on early-stage startup projects allows us to derive recommendations for founders, ecosystem stakeholders and (loal) politics based on project evaluations.

From a research perspective, UpStart BW's Goal is to gain an insight into the lived reality of early-stage startups that remain under-studied in previous studies and established methods of analysis. By taking temporal changes into account as well as a develoment of custom methodologies for data collection, evaluation and analysis, the project has a unique research perspective and contribution on the fields of early-stage startup and entrepreneurial ecosystem research.

BW ecosystem published reports

A first report about BW's startup ecosystem, with fundamental analyses and reflections as well as a first ranking of all surveyed startups.

Download-Link (not yet available)

Further information with greater depth, based on more data about BW's startup ecosystem as well as in-depth interviews with some select startup founders and entrepreneurs.

Download-Link (not yet available)


For an overview of scientific studies and presentations based on the project's collected data, as well as for further information about this research project:

DEEM project page


This image shows Andreas Wahl

Andreas Wahl

Dr. rer. pol.

Head of Teaching

This image shows Johannes  Engels

Johannes Engels


Research Associate

This image shows Sophia Hess

Sophia Hess


Research Associate

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