Research Topic

Microfoundations of Strategic Entrepreneurship

About this Research Topic

Firms that continually identify and exploit new market opportunities also tend to create and capture greater value for owners, customers, and economies. Strategic entrepreneurship refers to the activities that firms use to seek out and capture new opportunities in order to improve their ability to deliver customer value. Researchers over the past two decades have devoted attention to understanding how and why firms implement strategic entrepreneurship. Rooted in strategy and organizational theory traditions, this research has tended to focus on firms’ resources, innovative activities, capabilities, and industry and market dynamics, and how these factors influence firms’ successful pursuit of strategic entrepreneurship.

However, relatively less effort has been devoted to understanding how the individual-level characteristics of firms’ leaders -- whether top executives, managers, founders, or owners -- drive their firms’ efforts to practice strategic entrepreneurship. While this research has been lacking in the entrepreneurship domain, a broader scholarly focus on individual-level explanations for firm-level outcomes has emerged in the past decade as the microfoundations movement. Firm leaders can have an important influence on their firms’ activities, by hiring managers and employees, by directing and incentivizing behaviors, by setting the firms’ strategic vision, and, for the purposes of this Research Topic, to direct firms’ efforts to identify and exploit new opportunities by identifying new customer needs and responding by developing innovative products and services.

This article collection aims to gather research that examines the microfoundations of strategic entrepreneurship. Specifically: How do the individual-level characteristics of firm leaders shape their firms’ strategic entrepreneurship efforts? This question is important because the motivations, personalities, cognitions, emotions, and behaviors of firm leaders may directly contribute to how firms pursue market opportunities to create customer value, which can have, in turn, implications for firms’ performance and survival.

We welcome empirical and conceptual work related to this issue. Potential themes could include:
● How and why do the personality attributes, cognitions, or emotions of firm leaders influence their (and their firms’) pursuit of new products and services? How do these individual-level characteristics shape leaders’ construal of the opportunities their firm encounters in the market?
● Firm leaders can include top executives, founders, managers, and others, and each type of leader has to contend with a different firm context. How might these contextual differences influence the relationship between leaders’ individual-level characteristics and their firms’ pursuit of strategic entrepreneurship?
● Strategic entrepreneurship can include many different activities -- from searching for changing customer preferences to experimenting with firm-level processes to developing new products and services. Do the personalities, cognitions, motivations, etc., of firm leaders make them more effective at directing one or more of these various activities?
● How might the individual-level characteristics of leaders and followers interact to influence the strategic entrepreneurship in a firm?
● How does the pursuit of strategic entrepreneurship influence firm leaders? For instance, do leaders, who lead firms’ efforts to develop innovations or explore market opportunities, experience higher or lower levels of well-being, satisfaction, or passion, and what are the possible moderators of these effects?


Keywords: microfoundations, entrepreneurship, individual differences, opportunity, innovation


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

Firms that continually identify and exploit new market opportunities also tend to create and capture greater value for owners, customers, and economies. Strategic entrepreneurship refers to the activities that firms use to seek out and capture new opportunities in order to improve their ability to deliver customer value. Researchers over the past two decades have devoted attention to understanding how and why firms implement strategic entrepreneurship. Rooted in strategy and organizational theory traditions, this research has tended to focus on firms’ resources, innovative activities, capabilities, and industry and market dynamics, and how these factors influence firms’ successful pursuit of strategic entrepreneurship.

However, relatively less effort has been devoted to understanding how the individual-level characteristics of firms’ leaders -- whether top executives, managers, founders, or owners -- drive their firms’ efforts to practice strategic entrepreneurship. While this research has been lacking in the entrepreneurship domain, a broader scholarly focus on individual-level explanations for firm-level outcomes has emerged in the past decade as the microfoundations movement. Firm leaders can have an important influence on their firms’ activities, by hiring managers and employees, by directing and incentivizing behaviors, by setting the firms’ strategic vision, and, for the purposes of this Research Topic, to direct firms’ efforts to identify and exploit new opportunities by identifying new customer needs and responding by developing innovative products and services.

This article collection aims to gather research that examines the microfoundations of strategic entrepreneurship. Specifically: How do the individual-level characteristics of firm leaders shape their firms’ strategic entrepreneurship efforts? This question is important because the motivations, personalities, cognitions, emotions, and behaviors of firm leaders may directly contribute to how firms pursue market opportunities to create customer value, which can have, in turn, implications for firms’ performance and survival.

We welcome empirical and conceptual work related to this issue. Potential themes could include:
● How and why do the personality attributes, cognitions, or emotions of firm leaders influence their (and their firms’) pursuit of new products and services? How do these individual-level characteristics shape leaders’ construal of the opportunities their firm encounters in the market?
● Firm leaders can include top executives, founders, managers, and others, and each type of leader has to contend with a different firm context. How might these contextual differences influence the relationship between leaders’ individual-level characteristics and their firms’ pursuit of strategic entrepreneurship?
● Strategic entrepreneurship can include many different activities -- from searching for changing customer preferences to experimenting with firm-level processes to developing new products and services. Do the personalities, cognitions, motivations, etc., of firm leaders make them more effective at directing one or more of these various activities?
● How might the individual-level characteristics of leaders and followers interact to influence the strategic entrepreneurship in a firm?
● How does the pursuit of strategic entrepreneurship influence firm leaders? For instance, do leaders, who lead firms’ efforts to develop innovations or explore market opportunities, experience higher or lower levels of well-being, satisfaction, or passion, and what are the possible moderators of these effects?


Keywords: microfoundations, entrepreneurship, individual differences, opportunity, innovation


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

30 October 2020 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

30 October 2020 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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