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ESU Conference 2009 on Entrepreneurship Benevento, 9-12 September 2009 What can we learn from the history of entrepreneurship? Hans Landström Institute.

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Presentation on theme: "ESU Conference 2009 on Entrepreneurship Benevento, 9-12 September 2009 What can we learn from the history of entrepreneurship? Hans Landström Institute."— Presentation transcript:

1 ESU Conference 2009 on Entrepreneurship Benevento, 9-12 September 2009 What can we learn from the history of entrepreneurship? Hans Landström Institute of Economic Research/CIRCLE Lund University, Sweden Email: hans.landstrom@fek.lu.sehans.landstrom@fek.lu.se

2 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Main Arguments History matters! 1.Some of the best and most influential works were written in early days of entrepreneurship research, of which many are intellectual achievements that are stimulating to read. 2.It is a question of knowledge accumulation  not ”invent the wheel” everytime starting a new study. 3.Today we can see an increased interest in a theoretical development of the field, and we are borrowing of concepts and theories from other research fields …  and when borrowing from other fields we need to understand the roots and assumptions on which these concepts and theories are based.

3 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Three Eras of Entrepreneurship Research 1870-1940 1940-1970 1970 - Economics Era Social ScienceManagement Era Studies Era 187019001950 2000

4 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Disciplinary Focus – Advantages and Disadvantages Integrated within main stream disciplines … 1.No need to reinvent the wheel. 2.Entrepreneurship research is required to meet the quality criteria of the discipline (academic legitimacy). Liberation from main stream disciplines … 1.Complex phenomena (existing theories not always optimal). 2.Research community in entrepreneurship (tacit knowledge). 3.Focus on the most central questions of entrepreneurship.

5 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Three Eras of Entrepreneurship Research 1870-1940 1940-1970 1970 - Economics Era Social ScienceManagement Era Studies Era 187019001950 2000

6 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Cognitive and Social Dimension of Research Cognitive dimension of research Including a general delimitation of and background knowledge about the study object as well as accepted methods and ways of reasoning. Social dimension of research Expressed in terms of organized forums for communication between researchers within the field, role models, and educational programs that provide and define the minimum competence required of researchers within the field.

7 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Development of Entrepreneurship Research Take off phaseGrowth phaseSearching maturation Cognitive dimension Social dimension

8 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström The Environment During the 1950s and 1960s Schumpeter (1942) ”… what we have got to accept is that the large-scale establishment has come to be the most powerful engine of progress.” (p 106) Galbraith (1967) Provided an important rationale for an economic policy oriented toward the large corporations. He argued that innovative activities as well as improvements in products and processes were most effeciently carried out in the context of large corporations. Servan-Schreiber (1968) Warned Europeans to be aware of The American Challenge in the form of the ”dynamism, organization, innovation, and the boldness that characterize the giant American corporation.”

9 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Social Changes in the 1960s and 1970s - Dynamics in society (… change in industrial structure) - Economic problems (… unemployment) - Change in fashion (… ”small is beautiful”) - Increased political interest (… Keynes’ ideas questioned) Development in society - Studies supporting- Demand from students the prevailing trends- External donors - Data bases and- Support programs data capacity Cognitive aspects Social aspects Macro-level analysis Micro-level analysis Small business economics Management studies

10 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström David Birch: The Job Generation Process (1979) Birch’s contribution was that he realized that no data were available to resolve various questions related to job creation, and he utilized and reshaped existing data in a way that they could be used for longitudinal analyses (Dun & Bradstreet data base 1969-1976). The majority of new jobs were created with 20 or less employees – often independent and young firms (thus, it was not the large firms that created new jobs). The report (54 pages) was sold in twelve copies, but its influence was enormous (among policy makers as well as research community). Considerable debate, but many of the findings have proved very robust and have been verified in many later studies (Storey, Kirchhoff, Reynolds, Davidsson).

11 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Take Off Phase – the Inflow of Researchers From Different Research Disciplines Pioneers – macro-level analysis (small business economics) Job generation:David Birch, David Storey, Catherine Armington, Marjorie Odle, David Evans, etc. Dynamics ofRichard Nelson, Sidney Winter, William Brock, David Evans industries:Robert Lucas, Linda Leighton, Bruce Kirchhoff, etc. Innovation:Zoltan Acs, David Audretsch, Bo Carlsson, Roy Rothwell, etc. Regional Giacomo Becattini, Sebastiano Brusco, Werner Sengenberger, development:Charles Sabel, David Storey, Ray Oakey, etc. Pioneers – micro-level analysis (management studies) Allan Gibb, David Kirby, Bengt Johannisson, Arnold Cooper, Charles Hofer, Jeffry Timmons, William Bygrave, Ian MacMillan, Jeffrey Covin, Dennis Slevin, William Gartner, Howard Stevenson, Sue Birley, William Wetzel, Edward Roberts, Jim Curran, John Stanworth, Robert Hisrich … and many many more …

12 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Take Off Phase – Cognitive Dimension Researchers picked up where social scientists left of  searching for entrepreneurial traits and characteristics (anchored in McClelland, Collins, et al., Smith) Low entry field Discovery of a new phenomenon Churchill (1992) made an analogy to the six blind men and the elephant: It was an unstructured exploration of the elephant – the researchers discovered that this animal was different, that it was composed of a number of unusual parts, and that it was quite large.

13 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Take Off Phase – Social Dimension Individualism – the research community was small and fragmented Emerging ”arenas” for entrepreneurship scholars Professional organizations ICSB 1977 (1956), ECSB 1988, Academy of Management Entrepreneurship Division 1987 (1974) Academic conferences Rencontres de St-Gall 1948, and ICSB 1956, UK Small Firm Policy and Research Conference 1979, Nordic Conference on Small Business 1980, Babson Conference 1981, RENT Conference 1987 Scientific journals Explorations in Entrepreneurial History 1949, Internationales Gewerbearchive 1952, Journal of Small Business Management 1955, American Journal of Small Business 1977 (ETP 1988), European Small Business Journal 1982 (today ISBM), Journal of Business Venturing 1985, Entrepreneurship & Regional Development 1989, Small Business Economics 1989

14 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Development of Entrepreneurship Research – Take Off Phase Take off phase Growth phase Searching maturation Cognitive dimension Explorative driven Practical orientation Pragmatic methodology Social dimension Strong links to society Individualism Pioneers

15 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Growth of Entrepreneurship Research

16 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Growth Phase – Cognitive Dimension Systematic shift from an interest in the entrepreneur as an individual (entrepreneurial traits) to contextual and processual aspects. William Gartner, 1985, A conceptual framework for describing the phenomenon of new venture creation, Academy of Management Review. William Gartner, 1988, Who is the entrepreneur? is the wrong question, American Journal of Small Business.

17 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Changing Focus in Entrepreneurship Research (Bygrave & Hofer, 1991) Traditional focus New focus Characteristics of the entrepreneur of the process Key questions:- Who becomes - What’s involved in perceived entrepreneurs? opportunities effeciently? - Why do people - What are the key tasks in successfully become entrepreneurs? establishing new organizations? - What characterize - How are these tasks different from (un)successful managing ongoing companies? entrepreneurs?

18 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Growth Phase – Social Dimension Organized forums for communication (eg. 44 English-language refereed scientific journals). Role models and ideals (eg. 277 endowed chairs in the US). Educations programs in entrepreneurship (eg. more than 2,200 courses in entrepreneurship and small business in the US, and an increased number of Ph D programs). (Katz, 2003). Conclusion A rather advanced social structure for entrepreneurship research, and probably the social dimension has developed faster than the cognitive dimension of entrepreneurship research (descriptive and fragmented – potpurri of research [Low, 2001], mosaic of issues [Zahra, 2005], ” we are getting more pieces of the puzzle but no picture is emerging ” [Koppl & Minniti, 2003]).

19 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Development of Entrepreneurship Research - Growth Phase Take off phase Growth phase Searching maturation Cognitive dimension Explorative driven Practical orientation Pragmatic methodology Phenomenon and empirical driven fragmentation Policy orientation Improved empirical methodology Social dimension Strong links to society Individualism Pioneers Strong links to the topic Social infrastructure (Bounded)multi- disciplinary

20 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström A New Change – the Domain of Entrepreneurship Research Sankaran Venkataraman and Scott Shane Entrepreneurship is a scholarly field that seeks to understand how opportunities to bring into existence ”future” goods and services are discovered, created, and exploited, by whom, and with what consequences. (Academy of Management Review, 2000) Domain discussion 1.Domain approach 2.Integrative approach 3.Multi-research approach

21 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Search for Maturation – Cognitive Dimension 1.A realization that entrepreneurship is a complex, heterogeneous and multi-level phenomenon –Contextualizing entrepreneurship + topics (corporate, social, etc.) + spatial (different countries) –Specific knowledge (Cornelius et al., 2006) and specific language (Karlsson, 2008) –From fragmentation to specialization  emerging ”research circles” (ETP, 2006) 2.The return of economics and psychology (cognition)

22 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Search for Maturation – Social Dimension

23 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Development of Entrepreneurship Research - Searching Maturation Take off phase Growth phase Searching maturation Cognitive dimension Explorative driven Practical orientation Pragmatic methodology Phenomenon and empirical driven fragmentation Policy orientation Improved empirical methodology Stronger theory orientation specialization Knowledge orientation Widening of methodological approach Social dimension Strong links to society Individualism Pioneers Strong links to the topic Social infrastructure (Bounded)multi- displinary Strong links to the domain Cognitive development Emerging ”tribes”

24 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström What Can We Learn From History? 1.Influential works and intellectual achievements  role models Global Award for Entrepreneurship Research 1996David Birch2001Zoltan Acs David Audretsch 2006Israel Kirzner 1997Arnold Cooper2002Giacomo Becattini Charles Sabel 2007The Diana Project 1998David Storey2003William Baumol2008Bengt Johannisson 1999Ian MacMillan2004Paul Reynolds2009Scott Shane 2000Howard Aldrich 2005William Gartner

25 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström What Can We Learn From History? 2.Knowledge accumulation Empirical and descriptive knowledge that help us understand the phenomenon (the importance of entrepreneurship, the complexity and heterogeneity of the entrepreneurship, etc.), and it is a necessary step in order to build theory effectively, i.e. a deep understanding of the issues and practices involved improves the validity, sophistication and power of theoretical models developed. Shows the importance of relevance in research. Early scholars (the pioneers) had a clear connection to entrepreneurs and to society (practice and policy).

26 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström What Can We Learn From History? 3.Increased theoretical interest in entrepreneurship research Theory-driven methodologies/sampling (Davidsson, 2008)  Test theories not only describe reality. Borrow and invent (Zahra, 2007)  Good groundwork  when borrowing from other fields we need to understand the roots and assumptions on which these concepts and theories are based.

27 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Advices for PhD students Learn how to write … write, write, write! What you write is important (publications and citations more and more important) Make your research recognized through publications, and learn how to publish - create your own ”voice” in papers and articles - choose your ”conversation group” and journals (SCI) - make your publications easy to access (home page). … but who you know is almost as important! (researchers form social networks and within these networks theories are developed in dialogue, through mutual citations) Extend your publishing experience through collaboration with other researchers (note least the ”elite” within the field). Create a social network - peers: use for review, but also in order to increase the number of citations - seniors: personal communication (make yourself ”known”) - general: visibility (conferences/seminars/etc). Sell your ideas and publications (marketing).

28 Lunds universitet / Hans Landström Landström, Hans, 2005, Pioneers in Entrepreneurship and Small Business Research, Yew York: Springer ISBN 0-387-23601-5 More about the history of entrepreneurship research THANKS!


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