IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/kap/sbusec/v26y2006i2p189-202.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Modern Theories of Entrepreneurial Behavior: A Comparison and Appraisal

Author

Listed:
  • Anthony Endres
  • Christine Woods

    ()

Abstract

This paper compares and appraises three principal, contemporary theories of entrepreneurial decision making – neoclassical, Austrian and behavioral. We employ theory appraisal criteria made available in Fritz Machlup’s (1967) celebrated article on alternative theories of the firm. The paper considers theories that treat sequences of behavior by which individual entrepreneurs reach decisions on two levels: the discovery of profit opportunities and their exploitation. We also consider how each theory characterizes the entrepreneur’s decision making process by contrast with the posited behavior of other economic agents. Austrian theory is suited to explaining novel, adventurous behavior at the discovery stage. The algorithm for opportunity exploitation in both the neoclassical and Austrian approaches is a single-repertoire, optimization rule. Neoclassical theory is situated in frictionless, atomistic Walrasian markets and emphasizes mathematical tractability. Austrian and behavioral theories conceive entrepreneurial acts taking place in market processes understood as complex institutional phenomena. There are strong theoretical complementarities between Austrian and behavioral approaches; both approaches value descriptive accuracy, though the behavioralists place more weight on operational tractability. Austrians and behavioralists share an interest in heuristics; they emphasize the role of prior micro-level knowledge at the discovery stage. Therefore more collaborative research in future between Austrians and behavioralists should prove fruitful. Copyright Springer 2006

Suggested Citation

  • Anthony Endres & Christine Woods, 2006. "Modern Theories of Entrepreneurial Behavior: A Comparison and Appraisal," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 26(2), pages 189-202, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:sbusec:v:26:y:2006:i:2:p:189-202
    DOI: 10.1007/s11187-004-5608-7
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s11187-004-5608-7
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Francesca Lotti & Enrico Santarelli & Marco Vivarelli, 2009. "Defending Gibrat’s Law as a long-run regularity," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 32(1), pages 31-44, January.
    2. Enrico Santarelli & Marco Vivarelli, 2007. "Entrepreneurship and the process of firms’ entry, survival and growth," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 16(3), pages 455-488, June.
    3. Pei-Chou Lin & Deng-Shing Huang, 2008. "Technological Regimes and Firm Survival: Evidence Across Sectors and Over Time," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 30(2), pages 175-186, February.
    4. Sophie BOUTILLIER & Dimitri UZUNIDIS, 2011. "De l’incertitude des marchés au risque des affaires : la fonction de l’entrepreneur THE UNCERTAINTY OF THE MARKET AND THE RISK OF BUSINESS: THE ENTREPRENEURIAL FUNCTION," Working Papers 22, Réseau de Recherche sur l’Innovation. / Research Network on Innovation.
    5. Isachenkova, N. & Weeks, M., 2008. "Acquisition, Insolvency and Managers in UK Small Companies," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 0838, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
    6. Berg, Nathan, 2014. "Success from satisficing and imitation: Entrepreneurs' location choice and implications of heuristics for local economic development," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 67(8), pages 1700-1709.
    7. Amarante, M & Ghossoub, M & Phelps, E, 2013. "Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Knightian Uncertainty," Working Papers 12241, Imperial College, London, Imperial College Business School.
    8. Trofimov, Ivan, 2017. "Entrepreneurship and policy dynamics: a theoretical framework," MPRA Paper 79497, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Vera Catarina Rocha, 2012. "The entrepreneur in economic theory: from an invisible man toward a new research field," FEP Working Papers 459, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto.
    10. O'Connor, Allan, 2013. "A conceptual framework for entrepreneurship education policy: Meeting government and economic purposes," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 546-563.
    11. repec:kap:sbusec:v:50:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1007_s11187-017-9904-4 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Defeuilley, Christophe, 2009. "Retail competition in electricity markets," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(2), pages 377-386, February.
    13. Pei-Chou Lin & Deng-Shing Huang, 2006. "Technological Regimes and Firm Survival: Evidence across Sectors and over Time," IEAS Working Paper : academic research 06-A012, Institute of Economics, Academia Sinica, Taipei, Taiwan.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    alertness; entrepreneurial behavior; heuristics; optimization; theory appraisal; M13; M21; D21; B41;

    JEL classification:

    • M13 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration - - - New Firms; Startups
    • M21 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Economics - - - Business Economics
    • D21 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Theory
    • B41 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology - - - Economic Methodology

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kap:sbusec:v:26:y:2006:i:2:p:189-202. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Sonal Shukla) or (Rebekah McClure). General contact details of provider: http://www.springer.com .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.