Making Entrepreneurs and Worlds that Entrepreneurs Make: Self as Narrative Process

Harmeling, Susan Shaughnessy, Department of Business Administration, University of Virginia
Freeman, R. Edward, Darden Graduate School of Business, University of Virginia
Sarasvathy, Saras, Darden Graduate School of Business, University of Virginia

In this dissertation, I use a unique research site, The National Foundation for Teaching Entrepreneurship ("NFTE"), to empirically investigate the key elements of a transforming entrepreneurship education. This qualitative study uses a grounded theoretical approach (Locke, 2001) to discover how NFTE program participants experience entrepreneurship education and how key program elements may lead participants to "re - author" their life narratives (White and Epston, 1990) in some meaningful and measurable way. The cross - case analysis that demonstrates the study's principal findings can be found in Chapter 6. Here, I provide a brief summary of the rest of the dissertation. After a Prologue and an Introduction in Chapter I that describe the background and research approach of this project, respectively, in Chapter 2, I present the intellectual antecedents of this project, namely writings on entrepreneurship and economic development from Schumpeter, Baumol and Gerschenkron. I also include a selective literature review covering the general topic of fostering entrepreneurship with a separate section on entrepreneurship education specifically. In Chapter 3, I outline the qualitative research methods employed in this proj ect. Ir1 Chapter 4, I present DeWey's theory of Education and Experience (1938) that provides theoretical support both for the four - part case study on NFTE presented in Chapter 5 and for the cross - case analysis in Chapter 6. I end with a discussion of this project's contribution in Chapter 7.

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PHD (Doctor of Philosophy)
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