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Bringing individuals back in: the effects of career experience on new firm founding

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  • Scott Shane
  • Rakesh Khurana

Abstract

Because of methodological and theoretical obstacles, research on organizational foundings has largely focused on societal and population-level explanations. This paper takes the view that understanding firm foundings also requires linking to individual-level processes. We suggest that careers are an important mechanism linking individual-level processes to firm foundings. The firm-founding experience of potential founders impacts organizational foundings by influencing expectations of the liability of newness. We test our explanation on the set of inventions patented by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology over the period 1980--1996 by examining the effect of inventors' career experiences on the likelihood that an invention will be commercialized through the founding of a new organization. Copyright 2003, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Scott Shane & Rakesh Khurana, 2003. "Bringing individuals back in: the effects of career experience on new firm founding," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 12(3), pages 519-543, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:indcch:v:12:y:2003:i:3:p:519-543
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