Entrepreneurship as connecting: some implications for theorising and practice

Alistair Anderson, Sarah Drakopoulou Dodd, Sarah Jack

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

163 Citations (Scopus)
165 Downloads (Pure)


Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to consider why entrepreneurship theorising has become fragmented and how the research problem might be resolved. Design/methodology/approach - The authors first examine how entrepreneurial constructs reflect only part of what we "mean" by the construct to argue that we use different social constructions. This explains why theories are fragmented. But the authors then ask how we might use and reconcile this diversity, pointing to the utility of the constructs as part of a complex whole. The authors discuss entrepreneurship as a complex adaptive system showing how connections and relatedness help explain the power of entrepreneurship to use and adapt to change. Research implications - The authors' proposition of entrepreneurial endeavours as a complex adaptive system provides a fresh theoretical platform to examine aspects of entrepreneurship and improve theorising. Practical implications - The authors argue that this idea of connecting can also be used at the level of practice - how the connections that entrepreneurs use may help to explain some of what goes on in entrepreneurial practice. Originality/value - The paper's contribution is a relatively novel way of connecting diverse theorising.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)958 - 971
Number of pages14
JournalManagement Decision
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • social construction
  • entrepreneurship theory
  • ontol ogy
  • epistemology
  • complexity theory
  • entrepreneurship as a complex adaptive system
  • entrepreneurs
  • adaptive system theory


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