Handbook of Research Methods and Applications in Entrepreneurship and Small Business

Handbook of Research Methods and Applications in Entrepreneurship and Small Business

Handbooks of Research Methods and Applications series

Edited by Alan Carsrud and Malin Brännback

This thought provoking book builds on existing research traditions that make small business, entrepreneurship and family business a resource rich arena for study. It steps back to ask fundamental questions that every researcher should consider prior to engaging in data collection. It focuses on topics that have traditionally frustrated researchers including experimental methods in small business research, scale development, control variables and language issues in cross cultural research.

Chapter 1: Research in entrepreneurship: an introduction to the research challenges for the twenty-first century

Alan Carsrud, Malin Brännback and Richard T. Harrison

Subjects: business and management, entrepreneurship, family business, research methods in business and management, research methods, research methods in business and management


Entrepreneurship as a field of research and small business has grown exponentially for more than half a century. One of the field's leading journals Journal of Small Business Management, is now into its 51st volume. The field has moved from barely a handful of journals 30 years ago (Journal of Small Business Management, American Journal of Small Business - now Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice and Entrepreneurship & Regional Development) to over 100 in the English language alone. More importantly, articles on entrepreneurship increasingly appear in the major journals of the Academy of Management (Academy of Management Journal and Academy of Management Review) and in other disciplines that a mere ten years ago would have never published a paper on small business or new ventures (consider the creation of Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal by the Strategic Management Society). One has only to consider the complex survey methodologies of the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) project or the Panel Studies on Entrepreneurial Dynamics (PSED) to appreciate how far the field has spread in the last two decades. This complexity requires researchers to be fluent in a wide range of methodologies even if they prefer one approach to another. There are many books and primers on research methodology (Gartner et al., 2004). Likewise there are workshops and articles on how to use the data from the GEM and PSED studies.