Call for Papers


Journal of Small Business Management Special Issue on Understanding entrepreneurship: challenging dominant perspectives and theorising entrepreneurship through new post-positivist epistemologies

Possible questions and areas to be addressed in papers include, but are not limited to, the following:

1. Paradigmatic debates:

• What is the contribution of post-positivist paradigms and traditions to entrepreneurship research?

• Is the issue of paradigm commensurability resolved in entrepreneurship research?

• What are the philosophical foundations of different research traditions in entrepreneurship research and how do such philosophical underpinnings inform the formulation of research questions, the design of research and of course, the findings?

• What does critical realism offer to enhance our understanding of entrepreneurship, for example how does it differ from social constructionism and postmodernism?

2. Implications for research:

• What are the gaps and omissions in entrepreneurship research that are yet to addressed, and how can they be better addressed by studies that take qualitative perspectives?

• What are the methodological challenges of designing and conducting post-positivist research in entrepreneurship?

• How can we evaluate and judge the ‘quality’ of post-positivist and qualitative research in entrepreneurship?

• Which levels of analysis are taken into consideration in such research taking postpositivistic approach? Which approaches are more tuned with layered ontology of entrepreneurship that focuses on multi-level analysis (i.e. individual, organisational and macro-environmental levels)?

• How well do such studies transcend the structure and agency dichotomy in entrepreneurship research?

3. Implications for theory:

• Which disciplinary do debates prevail in entrepreneurship research? What is the value of inter-disciplinary work in post-positivist understandings of entrepreneurship?

• Does such entrepreneurship research generate insights that are applicable to other areas of management and organization studies?

• How well do those insights bridge the gap between entrepreneurship theory, practice and policy?

Special Issue Guest Editors:

Alistair Anderson, Robert Gordon University, UK (a.r.anderson @

Alain Fayolle, EM Lyon Business School, France (fayolle @

Jeremy Howells, University of Southampton, UK mailto:j.howells @

Mine Karatas-zkan, University of Southampton, UK (mko @

Roland Condor, EM Normandie Business School, France (r.condor @

Paper submission: June, 1 2012



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