NFIB Dissertation Award

Call for Submissions: 2022 NFIB Doctoral Dissertation Award In Entrepreneurship And Independent Business


The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) Doctoral Dissertation Award was established by the journal Entrepreneurship: Theory & Practice and is now sponsored by the NFIB Research Foundation. It recognizes outstanding doctoral research in the areas of entrepreneurship and independent business.


The NFIB Award targets research on the founding, management, growth, and development of new ventures, such as small businesses, family businesses, and minority businesses, and the support systems (other than venture capital) that facilitate their development. The Award does not target dissertations dealing primarily with high-growth, high-impact ventures (see the Heizer Award Call). 


The winner receives a cash prize of $2,500 and a plaque commemorating the winner’s outstanding research effort. 


  • Fit with the focus of the NFIB Award as described above.
  • Overall quality in literature survey, model development, hypothesis generation, research design, sample and/or site selection, data gathering methods, variable definition and measurement, data analysis methods, findings and conclusions, limitations, and implications for theory and research in entrepreneurship and independent business.


The 2022 NFIB Dissertation Award is open to authors who, in the calendar year 2020, completed all requirements for their doctoral degree, as supported by documentation from the awarding institution. This includes any coursework, public defense, revisions, etc. that are required for earning the degree. (Formal ceremonies such as graduation and promotion that are customary, but not required, can take place after 2020.) If some requirements have not been completed by 2020, candidates are encouraged to submit for the 2022 competition. 


Submitters should provide (electronically, see below): 

  • Evidence of completion (see “Eligibility” above).
  • A document including a one-page/500-word dissertation abstract and a 20-page/12,000-word dissertation summary. Please use one-inch margins and 12-point Times Roman font. 


Submissions should be sent electronically no later than 5:00 pm, Eastern Standard Time (UTC -5 hours), January 17, 2022 to April Franco at 

Finalists will be notified by early May 2022. To remain in the competition, finalists will be required to send a full electronic copy of the dissertation in the exact form it was evaluated for the doctoral degree by a (tight) deadline specified at that point. The winner of the NFIB Award must also 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 NFIB Award cannot also be eligible for the Heizer Award and vice versa. It is the submitter’s responsibility to submit to the Award which best fits the nominated work.