3. 3.1 Academic discourses on entrepreneurship INTRODUCTION TO THE CHAPTER ‘What is identified as entrepreneurship depends on what is described as entrepreneurship, which, in turn, depends on what people do as they perform entrepreneurship, or the other way around. Different people like to start in different ends – practice or concepts – as they approach what is entrepreneurship’ (Steyaert and Hjort, 2003, p. 11). According to Steyaert and Hjort (2003, p. 5), there are many forms of entrepreneurship concerned with differences in focus, definition, scope and paradigm. Addressing such multiple forms of entrepreneurship is not an end in itself, but rather a starting point from which to work. To do so, we seek to map out sociological and social psychological perspectives to entrepreneurship in this chapter, with the aim of scoping the current research. The studies included in this review are based on different paradigmatic, and therefore, methodological standpoints. The examination of entrepreneurship literature from paradigmatic perspectives was previously undertaken by Pittaway (2000, 2003, 2005) and Grant and Perren (2002). Their findings suggest the preponderant influence of functionalism in entrepreneurship research, despite a growing recognition and encouragement to study entrepreneurship from alternative – mainly interpretivist – perspectives (Chell, 1985; Bouchikhi, 1993). The power of alternative paradigms and also inter-disciplinary approaches to contribute to knowledge and understanding of entrepreneurship is well acknowledged (Chell et al., 1991; Grant and Perren, 2002; Steyaert, 2004; Jennings, Perren and Carter, 2004). Besides the call for more attention to multi-paradigmatic and multi-disciplinary issues, Steyaert and Katz (2004, p. 181) suggest...
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