Classics in Entrepreneurship Research


The course will be held in these locations:
June 13-15th SSES office, Saltmätargatan 9.
June 22nd: SSES office, Saltmätargatan 9.




Stockholm School of Economics

Stockholm School of Entrepreneurship

Classics In Entrepreneurship Research, SSES


This course explores research on entrepreneurship, building on classic readings in an interdisciplinary framework. The course offers doctoral students an opportunity to study and develop scholarly theories of entrepreneurial behavior and outcomes. We will study theories of entrepreneurial behavior at the individual, small group, organization, industry and national levels of analysis.

We will approach entrepreneurship as a fundamental social process of vital interest to scholars in many fields. Entrepreneurial processes include imagining, assessing, and discovering opportunities, mobilizing human and material resources, and multi-level learning during the creation of a new venture. Although this course focuses on new business ventures as the mode of exploitation, entrepreneurship can occur in mature organizations as well as in the absence of an organization.

The course introduces major theories and substantive topics as well as different methodologies and paradigms. The course asks you to critique current work, tackle research challenges in this area, and integrate findings into your own development as a researcher. The variation across disciplines and levels of analysis presents a challenge but also enriches the discussion.


The goals of this PhD course are that PhD students should be able to:

  • Navigate the high-level contours of the research field of entrepreneurship, its topics, its methods, and its theoretical foundations.
  • Identify the position of Nordic research in the global research context
  • Read and analyze scientific texts within the field
  • Use the course as a base for their individual dissertation plans.


The course is organized into two Parts.

In Part 1, we will meet in 12 sessions (90 minutes each) over 3 days. Each session will cover a theme in the entrepreneurship field and be anchored by 2-3 influential articles on the theme. The readings are analyzed and debated in class, and all students are expected to have read all assigned articles before coming to class. One student will present one paper each session, and the professor and other students acting as discussants. A list of presenters will be distributed as soon as the class list is completed.

In Part 2, we will meet for 4 sessions for 1 day (in person). Each student will have approximately 30 minutes (to be adjusted based on student enrollment) to present a research idea drawn from the seminar for discussion and feedback. The final session will be devoted to synthesizing the course takeaways and offering practice advice to students for conducting and completing their research projects.


Students will be required to prepare a written proposal for a research project using themes covered in the course and deliver a presentation of this proposal to the class.
The following is required before class:

Part 1
As you read the articles, take notes on any insights you uncover and bring them to class. Find ways to link the concepts covered in the readings with your research ideas, current events, and other aspects of your daily lives. Summarize these notes into reading summaries (1-2 pages) for your own personal use. For students who will lead the discussion for their assigned articles, use the following questions to frame your opening remarks and subsequent engagement:

  • What is the main idea or takeaways from the article?
  • What is the puzzle, controversy, or counter-intuitive argument in question?
  • How should we think about, study, or investigate the topic differently because of this article?
  • What other articles have cited this work? For highly cited articles, why has it been cited so much?

Part 2
Using the new insights gained from the Part 1 readings and discussions, generate a research-oriented proposal that will be valuable for your own scholarly development. The primary goal is to work on a substantive document that will advance your own research agenda. Examples include: preparing a research proposal or grant application, drafting a theoretical or modeling paper, preparing a literature review in which you draw on material in this seminar but advance your larger research development, or developing dissertation material related to this area.
Then for the short presentations, share a Project Snapshot of your research ideas and solicit group feedback. The topics to cover will be similar to the discussion questions from Part 1.


Besides the articles assigned for the seminar sessions, the following text is recommended as a resource, especially for new PhD students:

Huff, Anne Sigismund. 2009. Designing Research for publication. Thousand Oaks, CA:Sage.

Tentative Course Schedule and Partial Reading List:
The following papers form a partial reading list for the course. The course outline and readings may be modified to reflect the interests of students enrolled in the course.

Session 1: Introduction and How to read and write scholarly entrepreneurship articles

  • Locke, K. and Golden-Biddle, K., 1997. Constructing opportunities for contribution: Structuring intertextual coherence and “problematizing” in organizational studies. Academy of Management Journal, 40(5), pp.1023-1062.
  • Selections from Academy of Management Journal and Academy of Management Review “From the Editors” series
  • Pick your favorite entrepreneurship article to share with others

Session 2: Foundations of entrepreneurship research

  • Aldrich, H. E. 2005. Entrepreneurship. In N. Smelser & R. Swedberg (Eds.), Handbook of Economic Sociology (2nd ed.): 451–477. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
  • Stevenson, H. H., & Jarillo, J. C. (1990). A Paradigm of Entrepreneurship: Entrepreneurial Management. Strategic Management Journal, 11(5), 17-27.
  • Shane, S. (2008). The illusions of entrepreneurship: the costly myths that entrepreneurs, investors, and policymakers live by. New Haven: Yale University Press.
  • Shane, S., & Venkataraman, S. (2000). The Promise of Entrepreneurship as a Field of Research. The Academy of Management Review, 25(1), 217-226.
  • Stinchcombe, A.L. (1965). Social Structure and Organizations. In JG March (Ed.). Handbook of Organizations. Chicago, IL: Rand-McNally.

Session 3: Entrepreneurial entry and processes of exploiting opportunities

  • Kim, P. H., Aldrich, H. E., & Keister, L. A. (2006). Access (Not) Denied: The Impact of Financial, Human, and Cultural Capital on Entrepreneurial Entry in the United States. Small Business Economics, 27(1), 5-22.
  • Elfenbein, D. W., Hamilton, B. H., & Zenger, T. R. (2010). The Small Firm Effect and the Entrepreneurial Spawning of Scientists and Engineers. Management Science, 56(4), 659-681.
  • Folta, T. B., Delmar, F., & Wennberg, K. (2010). Hybrid Entrepreneurship. Management Science, 56(2), 253-269.
  • Nicolaou, N., Shane, S., Cherkas, L., Hunkin, J., & Spector, T. D. (2008). Is the Tendency to Engage in Entrepreneurship Genetic? Management Science, 54(1), 167-179.

Some optional readings:

  • Aldrich, H. E., P. H. Kim. 2007. A Life Course Perspective on Occupational Inheritance: Self-employed Parents and Their Children. In M. Ruef, M. Lounsbury, eds. Research in the Sociology of Organizations. Greenwich, CT: JAI Press, 24-42.
  • Klyver, K., Steffens, P. and Lomberg, C., 2020. Having your cake and eating it too? A two-stage model of the impact of employment and parallel job search on hybrid nascent entrepreneurship. Journal of Business Venturing, 35(5), p.106042.
  • Shane, S. (2012). Delivering on the promise of entrepreneurship as a field of research. Academy of Management Review, 37(1), 10-20. (This is a sequel to the 2000 publication.)
  • Stuart, T. E., W. W. Ding. 2006. When Do Scientists Become Entrepreneurs? The Social Structural Antecedents of Commercial Activity in the Academic Life Sciences. American Journal of Sociology 112(1) p.97-144.
  • Stuart, T. E., O. Sorenson. 2003. Liquidity Events and the Geographic Distribution of Entrepreneurial Activity. Administrative Science Quarterly 48(2) p.175-201.
  • Sorensen, J. B., M. A. Fassiotto. 2011. Organizations as Fonts of Entrepreneurship. Organization Science 22(5) p.1322-1331.
  • Sorensen, J. B. 2007. Bureaucracy and Entrepreneurship: Workplace Effects on Entrepreneurial Entry. Administrative Science Quarterly 52(3) p.387-412.
  • Nanda, R., J. B. Sorensen. 2010. Workplace Peers and Entrepreneurship. Management Science 56(7) p.1116-1126.

Session 4: Entrepreneurial entry: Cross-national issues

  • Baker, T., Gedajlovic, E., & Lubatkin, M. (2005). A framework for comparing entrepreneurship processes across nations. Journal of International Business Studies, 36(5), 492-504.
  • Kim, P. H., Lee, C.S, & Reynolds, P.D. (2012). Backed by the State: Social Protection and Starting Businesses in Knowledge-Intensive Industries. Advances in Entrepreneurship, Firm Emergence, and Growth(Volume 14 – Entrepreneurial Action). Katz, J., Corbett, A.C. (Eds.). Emerald Group, pp. 25–62.
  • Kim, P.H., Li, M., (2013). Injecting demand through spillovers: Foreign direct investment, domestic socio-political conditions, and host-country entrepreneurial activity. Journal of Business Venturing.

Some optional readings:

  • Keupp, M. M., & Gassmann, O. (2009). The Past and the Future of International Entrepreneurship: A Review and Suggestions for Developing the Field. Journal of Management, 35(3), 600-633. doi:10.1177/0149206308330558
  • Hoskisson, R. E., Covin, J., Volberda, H. W., & Johnson, R. a. (2011). Revitalizing Entrepreneurship: The Search for New Research Opportunities. Journal of Management Studies,48(6), 1141-1168. doi:10.1111/j.1467-6486.2010.00997.x
  • Levie, J., & Autio, E. (2011). Regulatory Burden, Rule of Law, and Entry of Strategic Entrepreneurs: An International Panel Study. Journal of Management Studies, 48(6), 1392-1419. doi:10.1111/j.1467-6486.2010.01006.x
  • McDougall, P. P., & Oviatt, B. M. (2000). International entrepreneurship: the intersection of two research paths. The Academy of Management Journal, 43(5), 902-906.
    Session 5: Organizing and resource mobilization
  • Dimov D. Nascent Entrepreneurs and Venture Emergence: Opportunity Confidence, Human Capital, and Early Planning. Journal of Management Studies. 2010;47(6):1123-1153.
  • Baker T, Nelson RE. Creating Something from Nothing: Resource Construction through Entrepreneurial Bricolage. Administrative Science Quarterly. 2005 Sep;50(3):329-366.
  • Williams, T.A., Zhao, E.Y., Sonenshein, S., Ucbasaran, D. and George, G., 2021. Breaking boundaries to creatively generate value: The role of resourcefulness in entrepreneurship. Journal of Business Venturing, 36(5), p.106141.

Some optional readings:

  • Baker T, Miner AS, Easley DT. Improvising firms: bricolage, account giving and improvisational competencies in the founding process. Research Policy. 2003;32(2):255-276. Link
  • Ciuchta, M.P., O’Toole, J. and Miner, A.S., 2021. The organizational improvisation landscape: Taking stock and looking forward. Journal of Management, 47(1), pp.288-316.
  • Delmar F, Shane S. Does business planning facilitate the development of new ventures? Strategic Management Journal. 2003;24(12):1165-1185.
  • Livingston J. Founders at Work: Stories of Startups’ Early Days. Apress; 2008.

Session 6: Entrepreneurial networks

  • Jack, S. L. (2005). The Role, Use and Activation of Strong and Weak Network Ties: A Qualitative Analysis. Journal of Management Studies, 42(6), 1233-1259.
  • Kim, P. H., Longest, K. C., & Aldrich, H. E. (2013) Can You Lend Me a Hand? Task-Role Alignment of Social Support for Aspiring Business Owners. Work & Occupations. 40(3):211-247.
  • Vissa, B. (2011). A Matching Theory of Entrepreneurs’ Tie Formation Intentions and Initiation of Economic Exchange. Academy of Management Journal, 54(1), 137-158.doi:10.5465/AMJ.2011.59215084
    Some optional readings:
  • Jack, S. L. (2010). Approaches to studying networks: Implications and outcomes. Journal of Business Venturing, 25(1), 120-137.
  • Kim, P. H., & Aldrich, H. E. (2005). Social Capital and Entrepreneurship. Foundations and Trends in Entrepreneurship, 1(2), 1-52. Boston: Now Publishers. (Read this for general background on network terminology and concepts.)
  • Powell, W. W., Koput, K. W., & Smith-Doerr, L. 1996. Interorganizational collaboration and the locus of innovation: Networks of learning in biotechnology. Administrative Science Quarterly, 41(1): 116-145.
  • Powell, W. W., White, D. R., Koput, K. W., & Owen-Smith, J. 2005. Network dynamics and field evolution: The growth of inter-organizational collaboration in the life sciences. American Journal of Sociology, 110(4): 1132-1205.
  • Vissa, B. (2010). Entrepreneurs’ Networking Style and Initiation of Economic Exchange. Organization Science, 1-19. doi:10.1287/orsc.1100.0567

Session 7: Founding teams

  • Aldrich, H. E., & Kim, P. H. (2007). Small Worlds, Infinite Possibilities? How Social Networks Affect Entrepreneurial Team Formation and Search. Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal, 1(2), 147-165.
  • Ruef, M., H. Aldrich, et al. (2003). ”The Structure of Founding Teams: Homophily, Strong Ties, and Isolation among US Entrepreneurs.” American Sociological Review 69(2): 317-317.
  • Beckman, C. M., & Burton, M. D. (2008). Founding the Future: Path Dependence in the Evolution of Top Management Teams from Founding to IPO. Organization Science, 19(1), 3-24. link.
  • Kaplan, S., Sensoy, B., & Stromberg, P. (2009). Should investors bet on the jockey or the horse? Evidence from the evolution of firms from early business plans to public companies. The Journal of Finance, 64(1), 75-115.  link.

Some optional readings:

  • Baron, J., M. Hannan, et al. (2001). “Labor Pains: Change in Organizational Models and Employee Turnover in Young, High-Tech Firms 1.” American Journal of Sociology 106(4): 960-1012.
  • Beckman, C. M., Burton, M. D., & O’Reilly, C. O. (2007). Early teams: The impact of team demography on VC financing and going public. Journal of Business Venturing, 22(2), 147-173.
  • Burton, M. and C. Beckman (2007). “Leaving a Legacy: Position Imprints and Successor Turnover in Young Firms.” American Sociological Review 72(2): 239.
  • Kim, P. H. and Longest, K. C., (2013) You Can’t Leave Your Work Behind: Employment Experience and Founding Collaborations. Journal of Business Venturing
  • Ruef, M. (2010). The entrepreneurial group: social identities, relations, and collective action. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
  • Wasserman, Noam (2012). “The Founders Dilemma”

Session 8: Entrepreneurial decision making

  • Camerer, C. and Lovallo, D., 1999. Overconfidence and excess entry: An experimental approach. American economic review, 89(1), pp.306-318.
  • Gregoire, D. A., Barr, P. S., & Shepherd, D. A. (2009). Cognitive Processes of Opportunity Recognition: The Role of Structural Alignment. Organization Science, 21(2), 413-431. doi:10.1287/orsc.1090.0462
  • Xu, H., & Ruef, M. (2004). The myth of the risk-tolerant entrepreneur. Strategic Organization, 2(4), 331.

Some optional readings:

  • Baron, R. A., & Ensley, M. D. (2006). Opportunity Recognition as the Detection of Meaningful Patterns: Evidence from Comparisons of Novice and Experienced Entrepreneurs. Management Science, 52(9), 1331-1344. doi:10.1287/mnsc.1060.0538
  • Baron, R. A., & Henry, R. A. (2010). How Entrepreneurs Acquire the Capacity to Excel: Insights from Research on Expert Performance. Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal, 4(1), 49-65.
  • Hamilton, B. H. (2000). Does Entrepreneurship Pay? An Empirical Analysis of the Returns of Self-Employment. Journal of Political Economy, 108(3), 604-631.
  • Hayward, M. L. A., Shepherd, D. A., & Griffin, D. (2006). A Hubris Theory of Entrepreneurship. Management Science, 52(2), 160-172. INFORMS. doi:10.1287/mnsc.1050.0483
  • Hmieleski, K. M., & Baron, R. A. (2009). Entrepreneurs’ Optimism and New Venture Performance: A Social Cognitive Perspective. Academy of Management Journal, 52(3), 473-488. Academy of Management.
  • Zhao, H., Seibert, S. E., & Lumpkin, G. T. (2010). The Relationship of Personality to Entrepreneurial Intentions and Performance: A Meta-Analytic Review. Journal of Management, 36(2), 381-404.

Session 9: Institutions and Entrepreneurship

  • Aldrich, H. E., C. M. Fiol. 1994. Fools rush in? The institutional context of industry creation. Academy of Management Review 19(4) p.645-670.
  • Tolbert, P. S., R. J. David, W. D. Sine. 2011. Studying Choice and Change: The Intersection of Institutional Theory and Entrepreneurship Research. Organization Science 22(5) p.1332-1344
  • Johnson, V. 2007. What Is Organizational Imprinting? Cultural Entrepreneurship in the Founding of the Paris Opera. American Journal of Sociology 113(1) p.97–127.

Some optional readings:

  • Garud, R., S. Jain, A. Kumaraswamy. 2002. Institutional entrepreneurship in the sponsorship of common technological standards: The case of Sun Microsystems and Java. Academy of Management Journal 45(1) p.196-214.
  • Garud, R., & Karnoe, P. (2003). Bricolage versus breakthrough: distributed and embedded agency in technology entrepreneurship. Research Policy, 32(2), 277-300. Link
  • Hargadon, A. B., Y. Douglas. 2001. When Innovations Meet Institutions: Edison and the Design of the Electric Light. Administrative Science Quarterly 46(3) p.476-501.
  • Rao, H. 2004. Institutional activism in the early American automobile industry. Journal of Business Venturing 19(3) p.359-384.
  • Santos, F. M., K. M. Eisenhardt. 2009. Constructing Markets and Shaping Boundaries: Entrepreneurial Power in Nascent Fields. Academy of Management Journal 52(4) p.643-671.
  • Sine, W. D., H. A. Haveman, P. S. Tolbert. 2005. Risky Business? Entrepreneurship in the New Independent-Power Sector. Administrative Science Quarterly 50(2) p.200-232.

Session 10: Institutions, Non-Market Actors, and Entrepreneurship

  • Kim, P. H., & Li, M. 2013. Seeking Assurances When Taking Action: Legal Systems, Social Trust, and Starting Businesses in Emerging Economies. Organization Studies.
  • Marquis, C. and Qiao, K., 2020. Waking from Mao’s dream: Communist ideological imprinting and the internationalization of entrepreneurial ventures in China. Administrative Science Quarterly, 65(3), pp.795-830.
  • Peng, M.W., 2001. How entrepreneurs create wealth in transition economies. Academy of Management Perspectives, 15(1), pp.95-108.
    Some optional readings:
  • Du, Y., Kim, P.H. and Aldrich, H.E., 2016. Hybrid strategies, dysfunctional competition, and new venture performance in transition economies. Management and Organization Review, 12(3), pp.469-501.
  • Du, Y. and Kim, P.H., 2021. One size does not fit all: Strategy configurations, complex environments, and new venture performance in emerging economies. Journal of Business Research, 124, pp.272-285.

Session 11: Institutions, industry and category formation

  • Navis, C., M. A. Glynn. 2010. How New Market Categories Emerge: Temporal Dynamics of Legitimacy, Identity, and Entrepreneurship in Satellite Radio, 1990-2005. Administrative Science Quarterly 55(3) p.439-471.
  • Croidieu, G. and Kim, P.H., 2018. Labor of love: Amateurs and lay-expertise legitimation in the early US radio field. Administrative Science Quarterly, 63(1), pp.1-42.
  • Leblebici, H., G. R. Salancik, A. Copay, T. King. 1991. Institutional Change and the Transformation of Interorganizational Fields: An Organizational History of the U.S. Radio Broadcasting Industry. Administrative Science Quarterly 36(3) p.333-363.

Session 12: Academic entrepreneurship

  • Grimaldi, R., M. Kenney, D. S. Siegel, M. Wright. 2011. 30 years after Bayh–Dole: Reassessing academic entrepreneurship. Research Policy 40(8) p.1045-1057.
  • Jain, S., G. George, M. Maltarich. 2009. Academics or entrepreneurs? Investigating role identity modification of university scientists involved in commercialization activity. Research Policy 38(6) p.922-935.
  • Shane, S. 2000. Prior Knowledge and the Discovery of Entrepreneurial Opportunities. Organization Science 11(4) p.448-469.
  • Stuart, T. E., W. W. Ding. 2006. When Do Scientists Become Entrepreneurs? The Social Structural Antecedents of Commercial Activity in the Academic Life Sciences. American Journal of Sociology 112(1) p.97-144.

Some optional readings:

  • Di Gregorio, D., S. Shane. 2003. Why do some universities generate more start-ups than others? Research Policy 32(2) p.209-227.
  • Ding, W. W. 2010. The Impact of Founders’ Professional-Education Background on the Adoption of Open Science by For-Profit Biotechnology Firms. Management Science 57(2) p.257-273.
  • Fini, R., N. Lacetera, S. Shane. 2010. Inside or outside the IP system? Business creation in academia. Research Policy 39(8) p.1060-1069.
  • Kotha, R., Crama, P. and Kim, P.H., 2018. Experience and signaling value in technology licensing contract payment structures. Academy of Management Journal, 61(4), pp.1307-1342.
  • Bricolage versus breakthrough: distributed and embedded agency in technology entrepreneurship

Date & Location

Start date: 13/05/2022
Date physical: June 13-15th & June 22nd
Location: Stockholm School of Entrepreneurship - SSES office, Saltmätargatan 9