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Perception and pursuit of entrepreneurial opportunities: an evolutionary economics perspective

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  • Guido Buenstorf

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Abstract

Considerable debate surrounds the concept of entrepreneurial opportunities. This paper contributes to the discussion by bringing in concepts and findings from evolutionary economics. It makes three points. First, adopting an evolutionary market process perspective sheds new light on the nature of opportunities. Second, not only the pursuit of entrepreneurial opportunities, but also the further development of the entrepreneurial venture is dependent on subjective opportunity perception and interpretation. Third, findings on industry evolution help understand how opportunities, as well as agents' ability and willingness to pursue them, change over time. Effects of pre-entry experience on opportunity recognition and firm performance are also discussed.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Max Planck Institute of Economics, Evolutionary Economics Group in its series Papers on Economics and Evolution with number 2006-01.

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Length: 24 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:esi:evopap:2006-01

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Keywords: opportunities; market process; business conceptions; industry evolution; spin-offs;

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References

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  1. Christian Cordes, 2006. "Darwinism in economics: from analogy to continuity," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 16(5), pages 529-541, December.
  2. Guido Buenstorf, 2006. "Evolution on the Shoulders of Giants: Entrepreneurship and Firm Survival in the German Laser Industry," Papers on Economics and Evolution 2005-20, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Evolutionary Economics Group.
  3. Witt, Ulrich, 2000. "Changing Cognitive Frames--Changing Organizational Forms: An Entrepreneurial Theory of Organizational Development," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 9(4), pages 733-55, December.
  4. Peter Thompson & Steven Klepper, 2003. "Submarkets and the Evolution of Market Structure," Working Papers 0303, Florida International University, Department of Economics.
  5. Klepper, Steven, 1997. "Industry Life Cycles," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 6(1), pages 145-81.
  6. Steven Klepper & Sally Sleeper, 2005. "Entry by Spinoffs," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 51(8), pages 1291-1306, August.
  7. Witt, Ulrich, 1998. "Imagination and leadership - The neglected dimension of an evolutionary theory of the firm," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 35(2), pages 161-177, April.
  8. Israel M. Kirzner, 1997. "Entrepreneurial Discovery and the Competitive Market Process: An Austrian Approach," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(1), pages 60-85, March.
  9. Ulrich Witt, 1999. "Do Entrepreneurs Need Firms? A Contribution to a Missing Chapter in Austrian Economics," The Review of Austrian Economics, Springer, vol. 11(1), pages 99-109, January.
  10. Guido Buenstorf, . "Designing Clunkers: Demand-Side Innovation and the Early History of the Mountain Bike," Papers on Economics and Evolution 2001-05, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Evolutionary Economics Group.
  11. Buchanan, James M. & Vanberg, Viktor J., 1991. "The Market as a Creative Process," Economics and Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(02), pages 167-186, October.
  12. Steven Klepper, 2002. "The capabilities of new firms and the evolution of the US automobile industry," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 11(4), pages 645-666, August.
  13. Klepper, Steven, 1996. "Entry, Exit, Growth, and Innovation over the Product Life Cycle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 562-83, June.
  14. Ulrich Witt, 2006. "Evolutionary Economics," Papers on Economics and Evolution 2006-05, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Evolutionary Economics Group.
  15. Margaret A. Peteraf & Jay B. Barney, 2003. "Unraveling the resource-based tangle," Managerial and Decision Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 24(4), pages 309-323.
  16. Ulrich Witt, . "How Evolutionary is Schumpeter's Theory of Economic Development?," Papers on Economics and Evolution 2001-12, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Evolutionary Economics Group.
  17. Guido Buenstorf & Steven Klepper, 2009. "Heritage and Agglomeration: The Akron Tyre Cluster Revisited," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(537), pages 705-733, 04.
  18. Robert A. Burgelman, 1983. "Corporate Entrepreneurship and Strategic Management: Insights from a Process Study," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 29(12), pages 1349-1364, December.
  19. Jay B. Barney, 1986. "Strategic Factor Markets: Expectations, Luck, and Business Strategy," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 32(10), pages 1231-1241, October.
  20. Guido Buenstorf & Johann Peter Murmann, 2005. "Ernst Abbe's scientific management: theoretical insights from a nineteenth-century dynamic capabilities approach," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 14(4), pages 543-578, August.
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Cited by:
  1. Isabel Salavisa & Pedro Videira & Filipa Santos, 2009. "Entrepreneurship and social networks in IT sectors: the case of the software industry in Portugal," Journal of Innovation Economics, De Boeck Université, vol. 0(2), pages 15-39.

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