Effectuation in an entrepreneurial creation setting : an action case study
Entrepreneurial effectuation, a concept presented by Saras Sarasvathy (2001), is currently among the hot topics of entrepreneurship research and discussion. Being a relatively new concept, the research approaches and methodological choices have been relatively limited in number and focus. Furthermore, the small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) context, especially the small busi-nesses have not been addressed despite their apparent crucial role in new product and venture creation processes. This qualitative case study focuses on a single creation process of a potential new product in an entrepreneurial small business setting. Through the conven-tions of action research, the aim is to understand the manifestation of the effec-tual construct and its dimensions within the creation process. The researcher is a part of an entrepreneurial team working as a part the creation process and simultaneously analyzing the process from the perspective of effectuation. This thesis was constructed through observing discussions, decisions and ac-tions of the focal entrepreneur and stakeholders, and by actively participating in the creation process as a stakeholder. The data was collected from those events observed and from interviews, which aimed at potentially confirming some of the observations. Analysis of the data was conducted by comparing and contrasting the original five dimensions of the theoretical effectual con-struct to the observed events and characteristics of the creation process. The results of the action research setting provide insight into how this particu-lar, unique creation process includes effectual characteristics and features. Fur-thermore, the research presents a perspective on observing effectual action and creation processes in an action research setting and its methodological conven-tions. The research concludes that it is possible to observe and analyze effectual entrepreneurial creation processes other than those solely focused on new ven-ture creation, and that action research settings can help in providing new, in-depth and detailed understanding on effectual processes. ...
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