On completion of his PhD in Small and Medium sized Enterprise (SME) and urban regeneration policy at Birkbeck College, London University, Robert was appointed as a Researcher at the Centre for Enterprise and Economic Development Research (CEEDR) in 1994. After initially dividing his time between SME research and lecturing in political and economic geography, since 1996 Robert has focused on research at CEEDR. In 2001 he established a legal recruitment agency and in 2006 a holiday lettings company in the Algarve, Portugal, whilst holding a part-time Principal Researcher post with CEEDR. In 2009 he returned to full–time work with CEEDR, whilst retaining his business Directorships.
Robert is currently a full-time Principal Researcher at CEEDR. His most recent research has focused on the financing of SMEs and MSBs (small and mid sized businesses), including leading on a number of recent projects for the UK Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS), including: investigating the motivations behind UK company listings on UK stock exchanges (2013); an early assessment of the UK Innovation Investment fund (2012); assessment of the new Business Link Universal Offer (2012); and an investigation of MSB growth (2011). Other key projects Robert has played a significant role in include: investigating the barriers to take up of business assistance for BIS; access to bank finance for Scottish SMEs for the Scottish Government; an assessment of the government's equity finance initiatives for SMEs with growth potential (for BIS); a vocational training needs assessment for the Falkland Islands Government; examining bank finance for Ethnic Minority Businesses (EMBs) for the British Bankers Association; assessing the impacts of the Deprived Urban Post Office Fund in England for the DTI; exploring capacity building approaches for the Third Sector for CapacityBuilders.
Books and published reports
Academic Refereed Journal Articles
Teasdale, Simon (2013) Playing with numbers: a methodological critique of the social enterprise growth myth. Journal of Social Entrepreneurship, 4 (2). pp. 113-131. ISSN 1942-0676
North, David J. (2013) Funding the growth of UK technology-based small firms since the financial crash: are there breakages in the finance escalator? Venture Capital, 15 (3). pp. 237-260. ISSN 1369-1066
Teasdale, Simon (2013) Placing with numbers: a methodological critique of the social enterprise growth myth. Journal of Social Entrepreneurship, 4 (2). pp. 113-131. ISSN 1942-0676
North, David J. (2010) Early assessment of the impact of BIS equity fund initiatives. Project Report. Middlesex University, London.
North, David J. (2010) Follow-up research into mid-cap business having difficulty raising bank finance. Project Report. Middlesex University, London.