Summary of Organizing Entrepreneurial Judgment, chapters 1-3

Thanks to John Dellape for this useful summary of Organizing Entrepreneurial Judgment: A New Approach to the Firm. Here he summarizes chapters 1-3. The rest will come soon. These summaries appeared earlier on the Hans Economics blog.

See also the Facebook page for the book, and various discussions on Organizations and Markets.


Interview with Kevin Langley, Chair of the Entrepreneurs’ Organization

“Is entrepreneurship really the answer to the world’s problems?” the New York Times asks Kevin Langley, head of the Entrepreneurs’ Organization? Interesting passage:

A. I traveled to Egypt after the revolution to help some young technology entrepreneurs. I spent three or four days mentoring them and then they took me to Tahrir Square. And this young female entrepreneur walked us right into the middle of Tahrir Square. She told me that her brother had been killed there during the revolution.

This Egyptian woman wants to develop an app, a 911 service for traveling in third world countries. You can use the app to identify and find medical help close to you and it will alert social networks that you have been injured. That one female entrepreneur could create opportunities for hundreds of people in Egypt, which is why the revolution happened.

Q. How so?

A. The Arab Spring was started by a young entrepreneur. The guy who set himself on fire in Tunisia, Mohamed Bouazizi, was a young street vendor who had a vision of having multiple fruit carts and had a goal of buying a Toyota pickup truck to haul his fruit carts around. What was lost was his hope.

Q. Wasn’t the Arab Spring also about people in the Middle East being tired of not choosing their own leaders?

A. The point I’m making is that no one talks about the fact that he was someone who aspired to create his own economic opportunity, and because that was limited, he lost all hope.

My own take is somewhat different, though of course I recognize the importance of small business startups for economic development.

Theories of Entrepreneurship

Bob Wenzel of Economic Policy Journal and I have been having a spirited debate on alternative accounts of the entrepreneurial function, with Bob defending Israel Kirzner’s concept of entrepreneurship as alertness to profit opportunities, and me favoring the view of Frank Knight, Ludwig von Mises, and myself (among others) that sees entrepreneurship as judgmental decision-making under uncertainty.

If you want to follow along in order, the posts here here:

This is not a scholarly debate filling the pages of peer-reviewed academic journals, but a lively and rapid-fire exchange of views in the blogosphere, so caveat emptor.

Interview with Dean Shepherd

The Academy of Management’s Entrepreneurship Division is hosting a series of interviews with prominent entrepreneurship scholars. Here is Indiana University’s Dean Shepherd, a leader in the field of opportunity recognition. (Can’t link to the video directly, just to the Division home page, where the interview currently appears.)

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