History of Entrepreneurship

Message from the Chair (July 2019)

Michael Chrichton, author of Jurassic Park, is credited with saying, “If you don’t know history, then you don’t know anything. You are a leaf that doesn’t know it is part of a tree.” As academics, it is thus critical that we remain informed about our discipline’s history to stay connected to the field and, in turn, build upon the knowledge that others have discovered.

Maintaining our collective knowledge about both the entrepreneurship discipline, in general, and the Entrepreneurship Division, in particular, is the History Committee’s primary goal.  Accordingly, the Division provides several history-focused resources for members. 

For example, on the Division website’s History of Entrepreneurship page, members can view profiles of the Division’s pioneers and download The History of the Entrepreneurship Division, written by Hans Landström and Jon Lindhe. This publication details the Division’s founding and growth and lists past Division Chairs and award winners through 2015.  (An updated list of award winners is available at https://ent.aom.org/awards.)

The Division supplies other useful online resources, including the following:

  • History of the Research Field: Details the early history of entrepreneurship research, provides bibliometric analyses and methodological reviews of the field, and includes a special section on Schumpeter’s contributions to entrepreneurship. 

Additionally, the Division has several social media sites – Facebook (@ENTDivision), Instagram (entdivaom), and Twitter (@ENT_Div_AoM) – that provide important information (e.g., Calls for Nominations) and help catalog our history. Please feel free to contribute content to these sites by uploading your pictures and videos from Division events and/or sharing news about developments in the field. Beyond recording our history, these sites allow the Division to disseminate information quickly to its members around the world. For example, about 81 percent of the Division’s Facebook followers reside outside the U.S. 

Finally, stay tuned for a Division podcast that will debut after this year’s Academy of Management meeting in Boston. “This Month in Entrepreneurship” (i.e., “TMI Entrepreneurship”) will include current events and history-focused segments, which will help us record our Division and discipline’s histories as they unfold.  

If you are interested in helping produce the podcast, joining the History Committee, and/or assisting with any of the Committee’s initiatives, please contact me at FranzLohrke@lsu.edu.

Thanks so much,

Franz Lohrke
Entrepreneurship Division Historian and Archivist

(Past messages)

History of the Division

The History of the Entrepreneurship Division by Hans Landström and Jon Lindhe


Pionier Profiles

William B. Gartner

William B. GartnerWilliam B. Gartner is an American entrepreneurship scholar and Professor of Entrepreneurship and the Art of Innovation, at the Department of Management, Politics and Philosophy at Copenhagen Business School, Denmark. He is also Professor of Entrepreneurship at the California Lutheran University in the US.

Gartner is considered a pioneer within his field, known for his belief in a behavioral approach and narrative methodology in entrepreneurship research. He was one of the first scholars within the field who advocated a shift from focusing on the individual traits of the entrepreneur, which was common during the 70s and 80s, to studying entrepreneurship as a behavioral process (Landström 2010).

Read more: William B. Gartner

Patricia P. McDougall-Covin

Patricia P. McDougall-CovinPatricia P. McDougall-Covin is an American scholar in the fields of Strategic Management, Entrepreneurship and International Business. She is Professor of Entrepreneurship and the Director of the Institute for International Business at Kelley School of Business, Indiana University. McDougall is considered a pioneering scholar of entrepreneurship and strategic management and she has made significant contributions to the knowledge of multinational enterprise (Kelly school of business, 2015).

Read more: Patricia P. McDougall-Covin

Arnold C. Cooper

Arnold C. CooperProfessor Arnold Cooper (March 9, 1933 – December 6, 2012) was a management scholar and a pioneer in the field of entrepreneurship and strategic management. During his academic career, that spanned over 40 years, Arnold Cooper made several significant contributions to the overall knowledge in the field of entrepreneurship. He also played a significant part in organizing the research field and he helped the elevation of entrepreneurship research to a higher academic level (Landström, 2010).

Read more: Arnold C. Cooper

Karl H. Vesper

Karl H. VesperKarl Hampton Vesper (b. 1932) is an American scholar and Professor emeritus of Management, Mechanical Engineering and Marine Studies at the University of Washington(WA). Vesper is known as a pioneer in the field of entrepreneurship research and education. He has launched several entrepreneurship courses and programs, and he has been involved in organizing some of the first conferences on entrepreneurship in the US (Spears school of business 2015).

Read more: Karl H. Vesper