Who Learns What? - A study based on entrepreneurs from biotechnology new ventures

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Journal Article
Journal of Small Business Management, 2010, 48 (3), pp. 441 - 468
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Despite a proliferation of research in the field of entrepreneurship, our understanding of entrepreneurial learning remains limited. We do not have systematic answers to many key questions. To what extent does the context of the learning shape that learning? How does the prior experience of an entrepreneur influence what they learn in new ventures? Does the specific role that the entrepreneur plays in a new venture, and the characteristics of the venture team, influence learning? To address this gap, and to progress the broader program of empirical research into entrepreneurial learning, we need to more fully explicate both the context and the content of learning. That is the objective and contribution of this study. We find that prior experience, the "division of (decision-making) labor" and the "knowledge" characteristic of the venture team shape learning. One implication is that future research will need to assess more carefully both the content of new learning from the new venture experience, and the context of learning. © 2010 International Council for Small Business.
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