Jeffrey D. Nuechterlein
The United States solidified its position as the world's most successful entrepreneurial economy during the second half of the twentieth century. U.S. companies have dominated several critical new technologies, including the computer, software, and Internet industries. This article describes and analyzes the role of venture capital as a key source of financing for start-up companies in the United States and compares the success of the U.S. venture capital industry with the venture capital industries in Europe and Asia. In preceding articles, Robert Hormats and David McCurdy have noted the important advisory role that the United States can play in the "networked" economy of the next century. As governments become more aware that venture financing can promote entrepreneurial activity and drive economic growth, they increasingly will look to the United States for guidance in how to support their venture capital sectors.