Orientation, Environment and Strategy
The McGill International Entrepreneurship series
Chapter 10: The Knowledge Network of E-Commerce and Internationalization of Entrepreneurship
Hamid Etemad and Yender Lee INTRODUCTION The number of books, articles, reports and other on-line publications, studying numerous problems in e-commerce in different fields rival the rate of publication in any well-established and active field.1 Each of these fields is examining a relevant e-commerce problem from their own disciplinary and then multidisciplinary perspectives. These developments point collectively to two clear facts: that an interdisciplinary field is emerging and that ecommerce will be developing much faster than its constituent disciplinary fields as it will be drawing upon their established base as well as respective growth rates. Although e-commerce has been very inclusive in its early stages of development, both in terms of content (that is, many disciplines, from computer sciences to technology and trade) and geographical reach (that is, spanning boundaries and time zones), it is practically impossible for practitioners and scholars to keep up with these developments. These rapid developments, especially their wide coverage, call for a systemic tracing of worldwide collections on the subject. This chapter is an attempt to use the theory of knowledge networks (Etemad and Lee, 2003a) in order to reveal the early scholarly foundations documented by and spread in many books and journals. In contrast to this rapid development in e-commerce by the early champions of this emerging field, the broader field of entrepreneurship to which ecommerce entrepreneurs belong (and from which e-commerce has departed), experienced a long formation period. While the beginning of entrepreneurship can be traced to the incremental work of a few...
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