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Olga Belousova, Aard Groen and Norris Krueger

Corporate entrepreneurship (CE) is commonly understood as a process that allows established companies to extend and reorient profiles of their activities, entering new markets and creating new businesses. One of the most seminal definitions of CE describes it as a process whereby an individual or a group of individuals, in association with an existing organization, create a new organization or instigate renewal or innovation within that organization (Sharma and Chrisman, 1999). The CE process is believed to possess the following specific properties. First, CE is based on new resource combinations and extension of the existing competencies (Birkinshaw, 1997; Burgelman, 1983a; Covin and Miles, 1999). Second, it often requires a departure from the existing practices and the ability of a firm to acquire innovative skills and capabilities (Birkinshaw, 1997; Burgelman, 1983a; Covin and Slevin, 1991; Floyd and Wooldridge, 1999; Hornsby et al., 2002). Finally, while Vesper (1984), Carrier (1996) and Birkinshaw (1997) draw our attention to the role of employee’s initiative, Pinchot (1985) further introduces the notion of responsibility, and Chung and Gibbons (1997) suggest that CE activity is a collective action. Hence, the main characteristics of the process of CE are the use of internal resources (slack, saved or generated), enlargement of the competencies base of the company into new business areas, acquisition of new knowledge and skills to enter these areas, and the initiative of employees (individually or in group) who take responsibility for the project.

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Dagmar Ylva Hattenberg, Olga Belousova and Aard J. Groen

Our knowledge regarding the entrepreneurial mindset (EMS) in an organizational context continues to be fragmented, especially regarding what organizations can do in terms of conditions to stimulate employees’ EMS. EMS became a subject of interest because of its beneficial influence on organizational entrepreneurship. EMS is theorized to be active amongst managers, increasing the entrepreneurialness and competitiveness of organizations, by influencing their organizational members. The next step is to understand how the EMS of employees can be influenced by organizations. This chapter explores to what extent organizational conditions stimulate EMS. Based on the results from a small sample, the authors propose an investigation of EMS in an organizational context, to further understand its interaction with organizational conditions. The results, based on a survey analysis and interviews, indicate that organizational conditions stimulate EMS, implying that organizations can undertake action to influence employees’ EMS, for which propositions are formulated.

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Sílvia Costa, Olga Belousova, Aniek Ouendag and Aard Groen

The VentureLab Weekend is a three-day intensive learning event in which participants work in teams and have the opportunity to develop their business ideas into well-developed business models and convincing presentations. The initiative is organized by the University of Groningen Centre of Entrepreneurship as an extracurricular activity every spring and autumn. In this chapter, we explain the theoretical and pedagogical foundations of the VentureLab Weekend. The initiative focuses on the development of strategic, economic, cultural and social capital as crucial competencies for entrepreneurial success. The event is designed following an effectuation logic to enable participants to understand the role of uncertainty in the entrepreneurship context. Finally, the VentureLab Weekend relies on an experiential learning approach by simulating an entrepreneurial learning context throughout the initiative. We reflect on our experience in organizing this event over the years as well as on the aspects that make the VentureLab Weekend a unique initiative.