Chapter 4: Nascent Entrepreneurs: Characteristics of Nascent Entrepreneurs and Entrepreneurial Learning
INTRODUCTION TO THE CHAPTER 4.1 There has been a dearth of research investigating the processes of entrepreneurial learning and managing as experienced by nascent entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurial learning is an emerging domain within the discipline of entrepreneurship. Drawn from a number of epistemological perspectives, the following studies largely examine entrepreneurial learning at the individual entrepreneur level (Young and Sexton, 1997; Cope and Watts, 2000; Rae and Carswell, 2000; Honig, 2001; Minniti and Bygrave, 2001; Rae, 2002, 2004a, 2004b; Cope, 2005) or at the small firm level (Deakins and Freel, 1998; Penn, Angwa, Forster et al., 1998; Anderson and Skinner, 1999; Chaston, Badger and Sadler-Smith, 1999a, 1999b). The learning experience of entrepreneurial teams has received little attention despite the literature on the characteristics or formation of entrepreneurial teams or venture teams (Stewart, 1989; Kamm, Shuman, Seeger and Nurick, 1990; Birley and Stockley, 2000; Vyakarnam, Jacobs and Hadelberg, 1999; Ucbasaran, Westhead, Wright et al., 2001). This chapter takes this gap in our knowledge as the starting point and develops the discussion by considering nascent entrepreneurs’ learning and managing in two ways. At the micro-level, this includes scrutinising nascent entrepreneurs’ individual experiences by examining their motivation, dispositions and capitals, in Bourdieu’s sense, such as the cultural and social capital that they draw on and capitals that they want to attain in life, such as economic capital. At the meso-relational level this refers to the relational experiences of entrepreneurial learning and managing by examining the teams or ‘venture communities’ that they form as a part...
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