The Social Dimensions of Entrepreneurship

Amir N. Licht and Jordan I. Siegel

in The Oxford Handbook of Entrepreneurship

Published in print May 2008 | ISBN: 9780199546992
Published online September 2009 | e-ISBN: 9780191577383 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Business and Management C

The Social Dimensions of Entrepreneurship

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Recent years have witnessed an emergence of entrepreneurship research in mainstream economics, some of which relates to legal institutions. The current literature exhibits considerable methodological disarray, however. There is no agreed definition for entrepreneurship — for example, whether innovation is a necessary element or whether self-employment suffices, or whether self-employment and ownership of a small business firm are equally entrepreneurial. Likewise, there is often no clear definition of, and distinction among, various social institutions. This makes it difficult to compare and even relate studies to one another. This article adopts an institutional economics approach its basic analytical framework. Social institutions are thus defined as the written and unwritten ‘rules of the game’: laws, norms, beliefs, and so forth. This framework is enriched primarily with insights from cross-cultural psychology, the discipline that specializes in cross-national comparisons of culture.

Keywords: entrepreneurship research; self-employment; legal institutions; institutional economics approach; analytical framework; cross-cultural psychology

Article.  12541 words. 

Subjects: Entrepreneurship ; Business Ethics

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