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Buridan's Ass, Risk, Uncertainty, and Self-Competition: A Theory of Entrepreneurship

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  • Khalil, Elias L

Abstract

This paper defines entrepreneurship as about 'self-competition,' the test to quest self-ability: can a future self achieve greater goals than what has been so far achieved? Self-competition involves the development of ability and, hence, ex ante assessment of ability is uncertain. Such anxiety occasions either immobilizing anxiety (Buridan's ass) or entrepreneurial action. No such uncertainty surrounds the assessment of risk probability characterizing events such as floods and stock market crashes. An observable prediction of the proposed uncertainty/risk dichotomy is that insurance, which concerns risk, cannot crowd out religions and other belief systems which appeal to uncertainty. Copyright 1997 by WWZ and Helbing & Lichtenhahn Verlag AG

Suggested Citation

  • Khalil, Elias L, 1997. "Buridan's Ass, Risk, Uncertainty, and Self-Competition: A Theory of Entrepreneurship," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(2), pages 147-163.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:kyklos:v:50:y:1997:i:2:p:147-63
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    Cited by:

    1. Elias Khalil, 2013. "Practical beliefs vs. scientific beliefs: two kinds of maximization," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 74(1), pages 107-126, January.
    2. Tony Yu, 2001. "An Entrepreneurial Perspective of Institutional Change," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 12(3), pages 217-236, September.
    3. Elias L. Khalil, 2013. "Egotism: making sense of social preferences," Chapters,in: Handbook on the Economics of Reciprocity and Social Enterprise, chapter 12, pages 121-133 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    4. Khalil, Elias L., 2010. "The Bayesian fallacy: Distinguishing internal motivations and religious beliefs from other beliefs," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 75(2), pages 268-280, August.
    5. Tony Fu-Lai Yu, 2003. "Innovation and coordination: A schutzian perspective," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(5), pages 397-412.
    6. Khalil, Elias L., 1998. "Accounting for tastes : By Gary Becker. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1996, pp. 258 (hardcover)," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 293-298.
    7. Khalil, Elias L., 1999. "Sentimental fools: a critique of Amartya Sen's notion of commitment," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 40(4), pages 373-386, December.
    8. Khalil, Elias L., 2013. "Lock-in institutions and efficiency," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 27-36.
    9. Khalil, Elias L., 2015. "Temptations as Impulsivity: How far are Regret and the Allais Paradox from Shoplifting?," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 551-559.
    10. Fikret Adaman & Pat Devine, 2002. "A Reconsideration of the Theory of Entrepreneurship: A participatory approach," Review of Political Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 14(3), pages 329-355.

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