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Relational Perspectives in Organizational Studies

A Research Companion

Edited by Olympia Kyriakidou and Mustafa F. Özbilgin

The contributors to this highly innovative and authoritative research companion, leading experts in their field, apply relational analyses to different areas of organization studies and provide a comprehensive review of the relational perspectives. The book features empirical, theoretical, philosophical and methodological contributions from a wide spectrum of disciplinary perspectives on relationality in and around organizations.
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Chapter 7: Venturing as a Relational Process

Mine Karatas-Özkan and William D. Murphy


Mine Karatas-Özkan and William D. Murphy* ¸ Introduction Steyaert and Hjorth (2003) view the field of entrepreneurship as a number of movements which change our perspectives and offer us new relations. Based on a longitudinal research project, which explores the business venturing process in the context of UK creative industries, this chapter should be considered as a part of these movements. The research focuses on the intrinsic processes of venturing which are entrepreneurial learning, managing and networking as experienced by a set of actors whom we identify as being members of a venture team. Building on Wenger’s (1998) notion of ‘communities of practice’, these actors are active participants in entrepreneurial processes which occur in a historical and cultural context. We place a particular emphasis on the processual, relational and creative qualities of entrepreneurial practices undertaken by these actors as and when they are engaged together in developing the venture on an everyday basis. It is their very engagement in the day-to-day conduct of the venture, their interpersonal relations, their shared knowledge and their negotiation of enterprise, which makes them a community of practice. The processes of sense-making and social construction are explored by examining the ways in which members of a venture team attempt to create understandings of organisational emergence, that is, building relationships with clients, competitors, regional support agencies and members of a sectoral network. Therefore we develop the notion of ‘venture community’ throughout the chapter in order to reflect on the relational characteristics of the venturing...

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