Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice: Special Issue on Knowledge Accumulation in Entrepreneurship

Starts:  Nov 1, 2019 7:00 AM (ET)
Ends:  Nov 15, 2019 11:59 PM (ET)
Associated with  Entrepreneurship (ENT)
Call for Proposals in Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice:
Special Issue on Knowledge Accumulation in Entrepreneurship
Submission Deadline: November 15, 2019

Background and Motive
Entrepreneurship scholarship is a big tent. The field is defined not by specific theories, favored dependent variables or methods, but by interest in broad phenomena related to novelty and creation. The diversity, eclecticism, and breadth of entrepreneurship provides many advantages. It allows scholars to focus on issues of great relevance and to stay attuned to current real-world developments (Wiklund et al., 2019); we can study a wide range of important dependent variables without stepping outside the boundaries of our field (Shepherd et al., 2019) and like the objects we study, we have the chance to pursue our research in entrepreneurial ways (Shepherd, 2015). There is a flip side, however. Our field risks becoming overly fragmented and knowledge accumulation is slower than we may wish for (Wiklund et al., 2011).

ETP will take on this challenge by promoting and supporting efforts of knowledge accumulation. We encourage scholars to submit work to ETP that explicitly attempts to create order in and accumulate our knowledge.

Specifically, we will launch a special issue devoted to papers focusing on knowledge accumulation in entrepreneurship. We believe ETP is the ideal outlet for providing such a service to the entrepreneurship scholarly community given its status as a premier journal, but also given that we have published several such papers in the past.

Types of Proposals Sought
We believe that the papers we seek fall into four broad categories. The first is qualitative reviews in some sub-field in entrepreneurship. Such reviews typically both look backwards, reviewing and generating order in what has already been done, and forward, presenting suggestions as to how the sub-field can develop going forward. As the intention is to achieve knowledge accumulation and avoid fragmentation, these reviews need to be of adequate breadth and scope rather than narrowly defined subfields that instead would threaten to contribute to increased fragmentation.
The second is quantitative, examining the directions and magnitudes of relationships across studies in relevant topical domains of entrepreneurship. For such purposes, meta-analysis represents a robust and in entrepreneurship increasingly prevalent way of testing relationships across studies already carried out. But other options for synthetizing findings in topical domains of entrepreneurship are also possible. For example, there are now a large number of  publicly available datasets lending themselves to entrepreneurship studies. It is possible to examine the replicability of findings across these datasets using the same or variants of the datasets. Regardless of which of these approaches is chosen, simply establishing the magnitude of correlations does not suffice. Broader implications for theory and entrepreneurship scholarship need to be emphasized so as to achieve knowledge accumulation (see e.g., Nason & Wiklund, 2018). 


third alternative is to synthesize findings and distil the most important finding from datasets that have been used repeatedly in entrepreneurship. For example, the PSED, NLSY, PSID, CPS and the Kauffman Firm Survey in the US, the BHPS in the UK, the CAUSEE in Australia, the Socio-Economic Panel in Germany, and international datasets such as GEM, the World Bank data, the Flash Eurobarometer and International Social Survey Program (ISSP), as well as various national matched employee-employer data from national registers are all datasets that have been used as the empirical basis for a large number of papers. These papers tend to be standalone efforts with little knowledge accumulation across the papers. It would be valuable to take stock of these efforts and assess the most important insights that have been gained from analyses of these datasets, what are common hurdles, and what may remain to be explored. Such review papers could also discuss what are 'common' or 'best' practice in terms of construct validity, analytical methods, and various definitions of entrepreneurship and entrepreneurial outcomes.

Fourth and finally, reviews can also look beyond our current empirical bases. Apart from datasets already being used to address entrepreneurship topics, there are several national and international data panels that potentially lend themselves to addressing issues relevant also to entrepreneurship. These appear in various fields, such as medicine, economic development, and political science. Systematic reviews of how such databases may be used moving forward would be very valuable to the entrepreneurship community.

Submission and Review Process

The submission and review process will be as follows. Authors are encouraged to submit a proposal (max 10 double-space pages excluding references). The regular ETP editorial team will screen these proposals and invite the most promising for the submission of full papers that will undergo a standard double-blind peer review process.

The following criteria will be important in the evaluation of submitted proposals:

Relevance to entrepreneurship scholarshipThe proposal deals with a topic that is (or likely to be in the future) generating extensive scholarly attention and debate in entrepreneurship research

Contribution: The contribution of the proposal is articulated and plausible. It should be significant, yet not exaggerated.

Depth of analysis: The proposal moves beyond reviewing (quantitatively or qualitatively) what has been done in the field, aiming for critical analysis and synthesis.

Scope: The scope is broad enough to facilitate knowledge accumulation, yet narrow enough that sufficient depth can be achieved within the time and page limits of the journal.

Uniqueness: The proposal provides evidence that similar reviews have not been recently published in ETP or elsewhere.

Organization: The proposal tells a compelling and coherent story that is easy to grasp and free of errors.  

The deadline for submission of proposals is November 15, 2019.