failing #startups #entrepreneurs

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📍 We always hear that only 10% of startups succeed, but how much have we heard about the other 90%? Survivorship bias blinds us to the inherent risks of innovation.

One would think that, being at the forefront of basic science, PhD's, Postdocs would be exposed to different ranges of failures. After all, there's no way of knowing where a line of research leads.

Sadly, the academic career is built only on successes: a paper published, a grant awarded. It builds an inherently conservative ecosystem that rewards certain results over insightful yet risky paths.

We publish a paper on the experiment that worked and neglect the thousands that didn't: coming from a single-molecule/single-nanoparticle world, I know exactly what it means "one experiment".

There are many reasons why startups don't succeed, why products don't succeed. Failure (whatever failure means in context) of a product has a big impact on the people involved.

I have one such failures under my belt, and it taught me much more than any incubator, workshop, training, book, or online guru could have ever done.

I try to speak about it whenever I have the chance, even if it's hard. I believe it paints a truthful story of how things can look like for ambitious scientists who are considering the entrepreneurial path for their careers.


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Aquiles Carattino
Aquiles Carattino
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