For the last 40 years, a geographic and mental space in the San Francisco Bay Area now known as Silicon Valley has been the birthplace of many of the largest and fastest growing electronics firms in the world and a number of new industrial sectors. 1 The technologies these firms commercialized have had a significant impact on many aspects of social and economic life. To facilitate the commercialization, a set of institutions evolved in Silicon Valley to nurture the new firms; these were established to exploit the poten... tial for rapid growth stemming from electronics innovations.