Elgar Research Agendas
Edited by Friederike Welter and William B. Gartner
Chapter 8: Theorizing entrepreneurship in context
The purpose of this chapter is to explore the foundations for theorizing entrepreneurship in context. The key questions are: what is the context of entrepreneurship and how can we know about this context? The chapter thus begins with an introduction of the meta-theoretical building blocks for a contextual approach to entrepreneurship, namely constructive realism and methodological interactionism or relationalism. Behavioural research is always based, either implicitly or explicitly, on assumptions about the thought and behaviour of the actors involved. These meta-theoretical building blocks provide a general framework for the analysis of thought and action of entrepreneurs. Next, we explore three modes of analysis that are essential for the study of entrepreneurship in context: evolutionary analysis, institutional analysis, and time-geography. Each mode of analysis approaches the context of entrepreneurship from different but complementary perspectives.
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