What is Entrepreneurship Studies?

I recently attended the Advancing European Tradition of Entrepreneurship Studies conference in Leeds. The key word here is advancing. The conference was useful for my research because it seeks to debate some of the questions raised by Daniel Hjorth & Chris Steyaert in their series of books & workshops New Movements in Entrepreneurship. Continue reading

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Cultural Entrepreneurship Poster

My draft poster for the Advancing European Traditions of Entrepreneurship Studies conference taking place in Leeds in on 18 and 19th March. This is what the conference is about:

This two-day workshop builds on the concept of a ‘European’ School of entrepreneurship research, by bringing together leading scholars who represent this movement through research which are¬†distinct from the dominant behaviourist/positivist approaches that increasingly typify leading scholarly journals. The aim of the workshop is to provide a creative meeting space to consider experimental and novel approacheswhich advance theoretical understanding of the domain of entrepreneurship andits real-life practices, contexts and impacts. Drawing on multi-disciplinary perspectives, opportunities may thereby be created to expose conceptual anomalies, while developing impactful debates in dialogue with the mainstream of entrepreneurship science.

Cultural Work and Higher Education

I have written a chapter for a book entitled Cultural Work and Higher Education, edited by Dan Ashton and Caitriona Noonan. My chapter focuses on enterprise education and is based on research I did with post-graduate media students. Their experience of doing an enterprise module but not an evaluation of the module. This is the abstract for the chapter:

Media Enterprise in Higher Education: A Laboratory for Learning

Enterprise has become increasingly important in media and creative industries education. In this chapter, I explore some of the tensions between critical debates and teaching enterprise practice. Empirical evidence is provided from interviews with post-graduate media students revealing a dynamic and exploratory approach to entrepreneurship. While there are challenges, engaging with the practical aspects of entrepreneurship enables students to re-shape the idea of the entrepreneur to suit their own practice and circumstances. Reflection encourages students to develop their own media entrepreneur identity.

The book is published by Palgrave and should be available in Autumn 2013.

Social-Constructionism and identity

identity-badgeIn my literature review I explore new movements in entrepreneurship research which has led me to investigate social constructionism. The work of Chell and Karatas-Ozkan in particular but also researchers exploring gender and entrepreneurship have made use of social constructionism. To help me understand the theory I have drawn on the work of Vivien Burr. Continue reading

Position yourself

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I’ve just about finished my literature review and I’m feeling more confident about my ‘position’. The literature review is my first chapter and here is the introduction:

This chapter outlines the context for an exploration of cultural entrepreneurship. I draw on the academic disciplines of cultural studies, cultural policy studies and entrepreneurship to present different perspectives on the relationship between creative workers and entrepreneurial modes of work.

Critical debates, predominantly from cultural studies have sought to expose the paradox between on the one hand, a celebration of entrepreneurial and flexible work and on the other hand, evidence of self-exploitation (Hesmondhalgh and Baker, 2011, p.70-75). Many cultural studies critics depict policies embracing entrepreneurship as evidence of neo-liberal capitalism at play. In contrast, less politicized academics, view the focus on the cultural industries and enterprise as an opportunity to consider new working practices.

The literature associated with these polarized views forms the basis of this chapter and presents the conceptual framework for this research. My aim is firstly, to present key arguments that have shaped research on cultural entrepreneurship. Secondly, I hope to reveal clear distinctions between academic disciplines in terms of approach and purpose. And finally, I draw from both critical research and new movements in entrepreneurship to inform the basis for my empirical study.

 

Sang-Froid

 

Dont worry, my research has not led me to become a serial killer. Not yet anyway.

However, I have challenged myself to not lose my cool. To stay focused. And to try to be more disciplined in my professional work, including my research. Thanks partly to @PLongy.

Continue reading

What to Include in my Lit Review?

As I work my way through the literature, it is difficult to know where to stop.

The core elements are fairly clear. In my case, they include an overview of entrepreneurship theory, the cultural policy context and critical debates on cultural work.

It is really easy to feel overwhelmed. Each important contributor to the debate makes reference to so many other authors that I’m not sure what to follow-up or leave. For example, I have been re-reading McRobbie‘s important contribution to the critical debates on cultural entrepreneurship. Her research draws on Sennett and Beck to illustrate the potentially destructive impact of flexible and highly networked modes of work.

To what extent do I need to explore their work? Where do I stop?