Handbook of Entrepreneurial Cognition

Handbook of Entrepreneurial Cognition

Research Handbooks in Business and Management series

Edited by J. Robert Mitchell, Ronald K. Mitchell and Brandon Randolph-Seng

Entrepreneurial cognition research is at a crossroads, where static views give way to dynamic approaches. This Handbook draws on a variety of perspectives from experts in the field of entrepreneurial cognition to highlight the key elements in a socially-situated view, where cognition is action-oriented embodied, socially-situated, and distributed. Readers seeking to better understand and/or participate in some of the most up-to-date approaches to entrepreneurial cognition research will find this Handbook to be an invaluable and time-saving companion in their research.

Chapter 11: How language shapes thought: new vistas for entrepreneurship research

Jean S. Clarke and Joep P. Cornelissen

Subjects: business and management, entrepreneurship


Entrepreneurial cognition research, reflecting classic assumptions within cognitive science more generally, has traditionally conceptualized cognition as static, disembodied and individual. In this chapter, we outline a more dynamic, embodied and social perspective of entrepreneurial cognition. This perspective focuses in particular on the formative role of language in shaping the ideas of entrepreneurs and their attempts to gain a broader understanding and recognition of a new venture from relevant stakeholders and resource providers. We describe the theoretical underpinnings of this approach, conceptualize key constructs and outline a number of emergent areas for future research.

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