Heizer Dissertation Award



The purpose of the Heizer Doctoral Dissertation Award in New Enterprise Development is to recognize and honor outstanding doctoral research in the area of New Enterprise Development.


The principal focus of the Award is on research that deals with the founding, financing, management, growth, and development of high potential new ventures, with venture capital investing, or with corporate entrepreneurship. Dissertations dealing with small high-tech ventures may also qualify for the Heizer Award. Specifically excluded from the Heizer Award are dissertations dealing primarily with small business, family business, minority business, and/or with the support systems (other than venture capital) that help facilitate venture development (see the NFIB Award Call).


The Award itself will consist of a cash prize of $1,500 and an Award plaque commemorating the winner's outstanding research effort.


Three criteria will be used to evaluate all Heizer Award entries. They are:

  1. The degree to which the entry fits the specific focus of the Heizer Award described above;
  2. The overall scholarly quality of the entry and
  3. The overall quality and effectiveness of the entry's implications for the practice of new enterprise development as defined above. While scholarly quality and fit will be the deciding factors among eligible submissions, Heizer Award Winners must have well developed implications for practitioners in the area of new enterprise development. Dissertations without such implications cannot win the Heizer Award.


The 2019 Heizer Award is open to authors who, in calendar year 2018, completed all requirements for their doctoral degree, as supported by documentation from the awarding institution. This includes any public defense; coursework; revisions, etc. that are prerequisites for earning the degree. Exempt from this rule is the completion of any academic ceremony of 'graduation' or 'promotion' that is customary but not a requirement for degree completion. In cases where any part of the degree requirements remain unresolved, submission should be submitted the following year.


Submitters should provide (electronically, see below):

1)     evidence of completion (see “Eligibility” above);

2)     the following three nomination documents:

  1. a) a cover page that contains the Dissertation Title, the name of Dissertation Author, the name of the University at which the Dissertation was written, the names of all Dissertation Committee members, and the date the Dissertation was officially completed;
  2. b) a one-page Dissertation Abstract that provides a synopsis of the Dissertation Summary, and
  3. c) a 15-page Dissertation Summary. The Dissertation Summary should describe: (1) The Issues and Topics studied in the dissertation to determine the Entry’s Award Fit; (2) The following six aspects of the dissertation (a) The Quality and Comprehensiveness of its Research Questions and Literature Review, (b) The Quality and Rigor of its Conceptual Development, Specification of Underlying Assumptions,  Derivation of Hypotheses and Propositions, and Operationalization of Variables, (c) The Appropriateness and Creativity of Its Overall Research Design, Sample, and Site Selections, (d) The Comprehensiveness of its Data Gathering Methods and Measurement Techniques, (e) The Appropriateness and Effectiveness of its Data Analysis Techniques, and (f) The impact of its Findings on the area of New Enterprise Development to determine its Overall Quality, Innovativeness, Effectiveness, and Comprehensiveness as a research work, and (3) The Novelty and Importance of the dissertation’s Implications for Practice. 

 All three documents should be typed single-spaced with double spacing between paragraphs on 8.5 by 11-inch paper in 12 point New Times Roman font with 1 inch margins all around.


Submissions should be sent electronically no later than 5:00 pm, Eastern Standard Time (UTC -5 hours) January 31, 2019 to Dawn R. DeTienne dawn.detienne@colostate.edu  (Entrepreneurship Division Chair-Elect).

Finalists for the Heizer Award will be notified by early May, 2019. To remain in the competition, finalists will be required to send a full electronic copy of their dissertation in the exact form it was evaluated for the doctoral degree by a (tight) deadline specified at that point. The winner of the Heizer Award will be required to provide two print copies of the dissertation.


Authors can submit their work for consideration for only one of the ENT Division’s dissertation awards. Thus, those who submit for the Heizer Award cannot simultaneously nominate their work for the National Federation of Independent (NFIB) Doctoral Dissertation Award, and vice versa. It is strictly the submitter’s responsibility to submit to the Award which best fits the nominated work. We strongly advise that you read carefully the criteria for each award before making your submission.