The Copenhagen Business School Initiative “Re-Thinking History” is working for some time now on the topic of Historical Approaches to Entrepreneurship Research. One of the members of the group, R. Dan Wadhwani (visting Professor at CBS) has organised together with David A. Kirsch, William B. Gartner, Friederike Welter, and Geoffrey Jones, a call for papers for a special issue of Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal on this topic.
R. Daniel Wadhwani, University of the Pacific
David A. Kirsch, University of Maryland
William B. Gartner, California Lutheran University & Copenhagen Business School
Friederike Welter, IfM Bonn and University of Siegen, Germany
Geoffrey Jones, Harvard Business School
In recent years, scholars have grown increasingly interested in the promise of historical approaches to entrepreneurship research. History, it has been argued, can be valuable in addressing a number of limitations in traditional approaches to studying entrepreneurship, including by providing multi-level perspectives on the entrepreneurial process (Tripsas, 1997; Forbes and Kirsch, 2010; Agarwal and Braguinsky, 2014), in accounting for contexts and institutions (Baumol, 1990; Welter, 2011; Haveman et al, 2012, Zahra and Wright 2011), in understanding the relationship between entrepreneurship and economic change (Schumpeter, 1947; Casson and Godley, 2005; Baumol and Strom, 2007; Lippmann and Aldrich, 2014), and in situating entrepreneurial behavior and cognition within the flow of time (Popp and Holt, 2013). History, in this regard, points the direction to both valuable sources and data for addressing such topics (Forbes and Kirsch, 2010) and to a body of historical theory from which to conceptualize context, time, and change analytically (Wadhwani and Jones, 2014; Wadhwani, 2010). Indeed, it is for many of these same reasons that Schumpeter (1947) called on theorists and historians to collaborate in the study of entrepreneurship. For this special issue, we seek theoretical and empirical work that significantly advances our understanding of whether and how historical research and reasoning can contribute to our understanding of entrepreneurship. In this regard, we encourage submissions that not only make contributions to entrepreneurship research and theory, but also engage the methodological and theoretical issues involved in using historical approaches in the management disciplines (Ingram, et al, 2012; Bucheli and Wadhwani, 2014; Rowlinson, et al, 2014; Kipping and Üsdiken, 2014). We welcome a broad range of ways to conceptualize and integrate history in entrepreneurship research, including as a set of sources and methods, as context (e.g. industry evolution), as an independent variable (experience at firm or founder level), as a mechanism (process, path dependency, or way of interpreting the past), or an outcome (e.g. historical performance).