Conference PaperPDF Available

Digital Entrepreneurship: Research and Practice

Authors:

Abstract and Figures

Digital entrepreneurship is broadly defined as creating new ventures and transforming existing businesses by developing novel digital technologies and/or novel usage of such technologies, (European Commission, 2015). Digital entrepreneurship has been viewed as a critical pillar for economic growth, job creation and innovation by many countries including the Member States of the European Union. We argue that a nation's digital entrepreneurial capacity depends largely on digital entrepreneurial behaviour, culture, and strategies as well as a supportive innovation ecosystem in which governments, industry, business, educational institutions and NGOs (non-government organizations) work together. Therefore, a holistic and integrative approach is needed. This study aims to explore the emerging concept of digital entrepreneurship from multiple disciplinary perspectives, namely, information technology and systems, entrepreneurship and management, as well as contextual political/legal and socioeconomic factors and their impacts in a systemic and integrative way. For that purpose, the paper develops a conceptual model to study digital entrepreneurship drawing on current literature and three well-established theories – social network theory, social capital theory and institutional theory. The model addresses five fundamental research questions of digital entrepreneurship, thus leading to a better understanding of the concept and practice of digital entrepreneurship.
Content may be subject to copyright.
9th Annual Conference of the EuroMed Academy of Business 2173
Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Digital Ecosystems ISBN: 978-9963-711-43-7
DIGITAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP: RESEARCH AND PRACTICE
Zhao, Fang; Collier, Alan
School of Business and Law, Edith Cowan University, Perth, Australia
ABSTRACT
Digital entrepreneurship is broadly defined as creating new ventures and transforming existing
businesses by developing novel digital technologies and/or novel usage of such technologies,
(European Commission, 2015). Digital entrepreneurship has been viewed as a critical pillar for
economic growth, job creation and innovation by many countries including the Member States of the
European Union. We argue that a nation’s digital entrepreneurial capacity depends largely on digital
entrepreneurial behaviour, culture, and strategies as well as a supportive innovation ecosystem in
which governments, industry, business, educational institutions and NGOs (non-government
organizations) work together. Therefore, a holistic and integrative approach is needed. This study aims
to explore the emerging concept of digital entrepreneurship from multiple disciplinary perspectives,
namely, information technology and systems, entrepreneurship and management, as well as contextual
political/legal and socio-economic factors and their impacts in a systemic and integrative way. For that
purpose, the paper develops a conceptual model to study digital entrepreneurship drawing on current
literature and three well-established theories social network theory, social capital theory and
institutional theory. The model addresses five fundamental research questions of digital
entrepreneurship, thus leading to a better understanding of the concept and practice of digital
entrepreneurship.
INTRODUCTION
The rapid proliferation of digital technologies with new functionalities has profoundly changed
competitive environments, reshaping traditional business strategies, structures and processes
(Bharadwaj et al. 2013). For example, in the networked economy powered by digital technologies,
many organizations are getting smaller, with one-person companies and partnerships proliferating.
New digital technologies such as social media, big data, and mobile and cloud solutions technologies
give rise to new ways of collaborating, leveraging resources, product/service design, development and
deployment over open standards and shared technologies (Markus and Loebecke, 2013). These
technologies power the digital economy by bringing in a new range of opportunities with substantial
potential business value and can dramatically reduce the cost for new ventures (Zhao et al., 2015). A
good example is Alibaba.com which has helped millions of Chinese become entrepreneurs and, in the
process, created many jobs.
9th Annual Conference of the EuroMed Academy of Business 2174
Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Digital Ecosystems ISBN: 978-9963-711-43-7
Although the opportunities created by digital technologies are enormous, they also bring serious
challenges. Digital technologies are reshaping fundamentally the labour market. Take Australia for
example. Around 40 per cent of Australian jobs that exist today will be lost in about 20 years’ time
according to a recent research report by the Committee for Economic Development of Australia
(CEDA, 2015). To harness the opportunity and address the challenges that are brought forward by
digital technologies, we argue that Australia needs to position itself to better take advantage of digital
entrepreneurship. Although the Australian Government has developed a series of national strategies to
enhance Australia’s digital transformation, Australia does not have a national strategy to grow the
digital entrepreneurship capability that drives the digital economy and realizes the business value of
digital technologies. According to a recent survey conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC, 2014),
Australia’s digital IQ (i.e. how well organisations capture the value they expect from technology
investments) is 61 per cent, which is below the average (63 per cent) of the 36 countries surveyed. In the
same survey, it was also found that only 43 per cent of company executives in Australia say that they
have a digital enterprise roadmap that includes digital business capabilities and processes, whereas the
average of the 36 major economies surveyed is 53 per cent. The findings indicate that a significant gap
exists between Australia and other major economies in terms of digital IQ and digital strategy
development. Australia will lose its competitiveness if its businesses fail to embrace the rapid and
fundamental changes as a result of digital technologies and embrace digital transformation. This paper
argues that its capacity to do so depends largely on digital entrepreneurial behaviour, culture, and
strategies as well as a supportive innovation ecosystem in which governments, industry, business,
educational institutions and NGOs (non-government organizations) work together.
Digital entrepreneurship, as an emerging phenomenon, fuses and involves stakeholders from different
social and economic sectors. This paper posits that a holistic and integrative approach is needed. For
example, growth in the number of digital entrepreneurs relies on the digital business skills of
individuals as well as systemic support through transformative policies and programs from
governments, industry/business, education and training institutions and the society as a whole. In this
regard, this paper aims to explore the emerging concept of digital entrepreneurship from multiple
disciplinary perspectives, namely, information technology and systems, entrepreneurship and
management, as well as contextual political/legal and socio-economic factors and their impacts in a
holistic and integrative way.
DIGITAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP RESEARCH
While the term ‘digital entrepreneurship’ has been used by some researchers and policy makers, its
conceptualization remains quite elusive. There is very little scholarship evident in the study field of
9th Annual Conference of the EuroMed Academy of Business 2175
Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Digital Ecosystems ISBN: 978-9963-711-43-7
digital entrepreneurship. Is digital entrepreneurship a sub-set of entrepreneurship associated with
digital technologies? Or is it a sub-set of digital economics associated with entrepreneurship? Or is it
sufficiently important or distinctive to be recognized as a separate field of scholarship? Only recently
have some studies in the entrepreneurship field started to examine the impact of digital technologies on
entrepreneurs’ decision making (Fischer and Reuber 2014; Sigfusson and Chetty 2013) and
entrepreneurial activities for venture development (Allison et al. 2014). There is a lack of conceptual
discussion and development of the concept of digital entrepreneurship as most prior research on using
digital technologies in entrepreneurship examined only sporadic phenomena related to it. Some
important fundamental questions remain largely unanswered in the current literature. For example,
how do digital technologies transform entrepreneurship? How is digital entrepreneurship different
from traditional entrepreneurship? How would digital entrepreneurship predict performance
outcomes? Several review articles on entrepreneurship identify other gaps in understanding the use of
digital technologies by entrepreneurs (Kiss et al. 2012; Mainela et al. 2014).
Recent developments in entrepreneurship research have given increased attention to the novel usage of
digital technologies for entrepreneurship. For instance, Sigfusson & Chetty (2013) report how
international entrepreneurs involved in software in Iceland use social networking sites to develop their
social capital and to identify opportunities. Digital platforms, such as open source communities (Yetis-
larsson et al. 2014), or innovation competition websites (Lampel et al. 2011), can serve as marketplaces
of knowledge and innovations (Dushnitsky and Klueter 2011), or as brokers between solutions seekers
and problems solvers (Fischer and Reuber 2014). Recently crowdfunding has received growing interest
from the IS field (Burtch 2014; Zheng et al. 2014) and such studies provide interesting insights into
funders’ lending behaviors and contribution patterns on crowd-funding websites.
The potential for digital technologies to be a distinct economic influence was recognized some time ago,
such as in the comments by Rosenbaum and Cronin (1993) when they remarked (p. 461) that:
Of much greater importance, however, is the growing awareness among many companies and
entrepreneurs that there is strategic and economic advantage to be gained by becoming involved in the
growth and development of electronic networking …
With improving communication and increasing specialization, opportunities for individual actors to
participate in the digital economy increased. This is identified and, to some extent explained by Yetis-
Larsson, Teigland and Dovbysh (2015). They introduced this concept by saying (p. 475):
In the contemporary economy, work is increasingly becoming freelance-based while moving online. Open
source software communities are rapidly becoming arenas in which individuals identify, co-create, and
realize opportunities through shared resources and expertise. Operating in a communal setting, these
9th Annual Conference of the EuroMed Academy of Business 2176
Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Digital Ecosystems ISBN: 978-9963-711-43-7
individuals, who we label open entrepreneurs, work and collaborate with members of their own open source
community.
Yetis-Larsson et al. identify their open entrepreneurs as becoming economically more important and their
work model self-sustaining. In order to realize the potential of digital entrepreneurship government
settings have to be, if not encouraging, at least benign. This was recognized by the OECD as early as
2001 (OECD 2001, p. 8) when it noted that:
Policies that engage ICT, human capital, innovation and entrepreneurship in the growth process, alongside
policies to mobilize labor and increase investment, are likely to bear the most fruit over the longer term.
But to have any chance of succeeding in these areas, governments must ensure that the fundamentals
macroeconomic stability, openness and competition, as well as economic and social institutions are
working.
It is clear that political, economic and social environments all have a role to play in the development of
digital entrepreneurship.
WHAT IS DIGITAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP?
Digital entrepreneurship is a term that appears to have only a vaguely-settled meaning. While it is a
rather complex definition, that used by the European Commission (2015, p.1) appears to be the only
attempt to define digital entrepreneurship up to now:
Digital entrepreneurship embraces all new ventures and the transformation of existing businesses that
drive economic and/or social value by creating and using novel digital technologies. Digital enterprises
are characterized by a high intensity of utilization of novel digital technologies (particularly social, big
data, mobile and cloud solutions) to improve business operations, invent new business models, sharpen
business intelligence, and engage with customers and stakeholders. They create the jobs and growth
opportunities of the future.
Arguably, digital entrepreneurship is probably the most significant single manifestation of
entrepreneurship and has flow-on effects into the structure of business itself. In this regard, digital
entrepreneurship appears likely to have a profound effect on all advanced economies. For example, the
Australian Innovation System Report (2015, p. 46) noted:
The values of entrepreneurial organizations have mostly been heralded for employment generation and
commercialization of new inventions. This is all changing with the rise of the knowledge and digital
economy, where entrepreneurs and the organizations they create are uniquely positioned to exploit new
opportunities, adopt new production methods and technologies, and reshape competition by penetrating
new markets.
9th Annual Conference of the EuroMed Academy of Business 2177
Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Digital Ecosystems ISBN: 978-9963-711-43-7
It is reasonable to conclude that digital entrepreneurs will have a profound influence on the further
development of the internet and the digital economy.
WHY IS DIGITAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP IMPORTANT?
According to Murphy et al. (2005) it is primarily entrepreneurship that has been responsible for the
amazing increase in Western per capita income over the past 200-300 years. The continuing importance
of entrepreneurship in Australia is demonstrated by Hendrickson et al. (2015) that the increase in
employment that occurred during the Global Financial Crisis, the greatest economic downturn since
the Great Depression of the 1930s, was attributable to entrepreneurship. As noted by Zahra (1999),
entrepreneurship should be considered as a significant socio-economic development factor in solving
unemployment problems, by providing a wider range of consumer products, and increasing
competitiveness and overall prosperity.
In the context of Australia, with the rapid growth of ICT and digital technologies, the contribution of
the ICT sector to the Australian economy was profound because the direct contribution of the internet
to the Australian economy is around $50 billion, or 3.6% of GDP (AIIA 2015). As recently as 2015, Seek,
the largest job advertising agency in Australia, has reported that 10% of job vacancies are currently in
the ICT sector. Australian research shows that small and medium sized enterprises actively using new
technologies to improve communications and business processes create more new jobs and generate
more revenue than SMEs that use little technology in fact, between 2010 and 2012 SMEs regarded as
leaders in the adoption of technology increased revenues 15 percentage points faster and created jobs at
twice the speed of less progressive companies. A recent PWC analysis estimates that Australian small
businesses can generate additional $49.2 billion revenues in the next ten years by making better use of
digital technologies, of which 53 per cent could be realized in rural and regional Australia (PWC
Australia, 2015). All this evidence demonstrates the importance to the Australian economy of
promoting digital entrepreneurship. To achieve its vision of becoming a global leading digital economy
by 2020 (Australia Government, 2011), we argue that Australia needs a national strategy and a
concerted national effort to grow the digital entrepreneurship that drives the digital economy and
realizes the business value of digital technologies.
A CONCEPTUAL MODEL TO STUDY DIGITAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP
Digital entrepreneurship as an emerging concept differs from the traditional and general
entrepreneurship that has been studied for years. The European Commission (2013) identified five
‘pillars’ in its conceptual model of digital entrepreneurship, each of which is relevant in the analysis of
digital entrepreneurship:
9th Annual Conference of the EuroMed Academy of Business 2178
Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Digital Ecosystems ISBN: 978-9963-711-43-7
1. Digital knowledge base and ICT market.
2. Digital business environment.
3. Access to finance.
4. Digital skills and e-leadership.
5. Entrepreneurial Culture.
We argue that to study this new phenomenon in an integrative and holistic way, a new conceptual
framework is needed. Figure 1 illustrates our proposed approach to the study of the relationships
amongst variables in a hypothetical process (which is yet to be empirically tested) of digital
entrepreneurship. Given the social and networked nature of digital entrepreneurship, three theories:
social network theory (e.g. Borgatti et al., 2009); social capital theory (e.g. Nahapiet and Ghoshal,
1998); and institutional theory (DiMaggio and Powell, 1983), are selected as the theoretical
foundations for our model. Social networks and social capital commonly appear to interact with each
other in digital entrepreneurship development. For example, open source software (OSS) communities
are increasingly attracting entrepreneurs to create and obtain economic benefits through sharing
knowledge and innovation in the communities (Yetis-Larsson, et al., 2015). The key argument in social
capital theory is that relationships among members in a social network can become or lead to an
important source of social capital (e.g. information, knowledge and resources). The position of
individuals or firms in the network also affects their innovation performance. Studies suggest that the
higher the centrality, the higher the performance (Tan et al., 2014).
9th Annual Conference of the EuroMed Academy of Business 2179
Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Digital Ecosystems ISBN: 978-9963-711-43-7
Social Networks Environmental Influences
Hypothetical Digital
Entrepreneurship
Process
Theoretical
Foundations
Figure 1. Conceptual Framework for Study of Digital Entrepreneurship
By using these theories, this model helps explore how social networks at individual, institutional and
societal levels, and social capital, online and offline, affect digital opportunity identification and
exploration as well as entrepreneurial outcomes. In particular, this model allows us to investigate the
role and intensity of social networks and social capital in, and the effects of their interaction on, the
development and outcomes of digital entrepreneurship. This line of inquiry will help answer the
following two research questions:
1. What role do social networks play in digital opportunity identification and
exploration at individual, institutional and societal levels?
2. How, and to what extent, do social networks become or lead to an important source of social
capital in digital entrepreneurial development and performance?
The answers to the questions can help examine and test whether and how digital entrepreneurs follow
the same entrepreneurial process as traditional ones, namely, opportunity recognition and
exploration, and entrepreneurial outcomes.
To investigate the environmental influences, in particular, the role of enduring systems or institutions
in the development of digital entrepreneurship, the model draws on institutional theory (DiMaggio
and Powell, 1983). According to institutional theory, institutional forces have many facets, which Scott
(1995) summarized and categorized into three regulatory, social and cultural influences that
promote survival, and legitimacy of an organization. Institutional forces can be formal and informal
Digital opportunity
recognition
Digital
opportunity
exploration
Institutional
Theory
Social Network
Theory
Social Capital
Theory
IT/IS
Economic
Regulatory/Lega
l
Regulatory/Lega
l
Social/Cultural
Business &
National
Strategies
Societal
Institutional
Individual
9th Annual Conference of the EuroMed Academy of Business 2180
Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Digital Ecosystems ISBN: 978-9963-711-43-7
(North, 1990). Formal institutions refer to laws, regulations, and their supporting apparatuses and
informal ones could be social norms, values and beliefs. Although institutional theory has been
adopted in entrepreneurship research and proved to be highly useful (Bruton et al., 2010), its
application in digital entrepreneurship research is novel. We argue that the theoretical lens of
institutional theory allows researchers to explore in-depth what and how a society’s regulations and
rules, social norms and culture can do to influence the ecosystem in which digital entrepreneurship
can thrive. Given the important role that the economy and ICT can play, the model also uses them as
environmental forces for the study. This line of inquiry addresses the third and fourth research
questions below. The results of this inquiry will complement the findings from social networks and
social capital perspectives and can help develop sound business and national digital entrepreneurship
strategies to answer the fifth research question below.
3. What and how do digital technologies transform entrepreneurship in the developmental
process and in terms of outcomes?
4. What and how do environment forces (e.g. ICT, economic, regulatory/legal and
social/cultural) influence the process and outcomes of digital entrepreneurship?
5. What support mechanisms, structures, strategies, and performance variables are needed for
Australian digital entrepreneurs and firms to enhance their performance?
CONCLUSION AND FUTURE RESEARCH
There is an arguable case to recognise digital entrepreneurship as a distinct field of academic
scholarship in its own right based on its social and economic importance. The European Commission
has, through its 2013 study into digital entrepreneurship, identified this topic as worthy of specific
analysis. There is a body of scholarship, albeit an apparently quite thin body, related to digital
entrepreneurship that presently exists, and this body of scholarship has found several homes,
principally in the existing areas of digital economy and entrepreneurship. Taking each of these factors
into account there is a case for recognition of digital entrepreneurship as a new and growing area of
scholarship and research. In this regard, the present study paves the way for future research into this
important and yet underexplored study field.
Keywords: Digital entrepreneurship, digital economy, social network theory, social capital theory, institutional
theory
9th Annual Conference of the EuroMed Academy of Business 2181
Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Digital Ecosystems ISBN: 978-9963-711-43-7
REFERENCES
AIIA (2015). Australian Information Industries Association, ICT Statistics Review 2014 -15: AIIA response, March
2015, available from: https://aiia.com.au/documents/policy-submissions/policies-and-
submissions/2015/150305_ICT_Stats_REview_AIIA_REsponse.pdf
AIS (2015). Australian Innovation System Report (2015). Office of the Chief Economist, Department of Industry,
Innovations and Science ISBN ISSN: 978-1-925092-61-5
Allison, T. H., Davis, B. C., Short, J. C., and Webb, J. W. (2014). Crowdfunding in a prosocial microlending
environment: Examining the role of intrinsic versus extrinsic cues, Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, 39(1),
53-73.
Australia Government (2011). National Digital Economy Strategy, Canberra: The Author.
Bharadwaj, A., Sawy, O. A. E., Pavlou, P. A., and Venkatraman, N. (2013). Ditigal business strategy: Toward a
next generation of insights, MIS Quarterly (37:2), 471-482.
Borgatti, S. P., Mehra, A., Brass, D. J., & Labianca, G. (2009). Network analysis in the social sciences. Science,
323(5916), 892-895.
Bruton, G. D., Ahlstrom, D., & Li, H. L. (2010). Institutional theory and entrepreneurship: where are we now and
where do we need to move in the future? Entrepreneurship theory and practice, 34(3), 421-440.
Burtch, G. (2014). Cultural differences and geography as determinants of online prosocial lending, MIS Quarterly
(38), 773-794.
Committee for Economic Development of Australia (CEDA). (2015). Australia's future workforce? Melbourne: The
Author.
DiMaggio, P.J. & Powell, W.W. (1983). The iron cage revisited: Institutional isomorphism and collective rationality
in organizational fields. American Sociological Review, 48, 147160.
Dushnitsky, G., and Klueter, T. (2011). "Is there an Ebay for ideas? Insights from online knowledge marketplaces,
European Management Review (8), pp. 17-32.
European Commission (2013). European Commission (EC), Digital Entrepreneurship study; Project Description,
2013, available from: https://ec.europa.eu/growth/tools-databases/dem/monitor/project-description
European Commission (2014). Fuelling digital entrepreneurship in Europe, Background paper. At
http://ec.europa.eu/geninfo/query/resultaction.jsp?QueryText=EU+vision%2C+strategy+and+actions&query_sour
ce=GROWTH&swlang=en&x=18&y=8
European Commission (2015). European Commission (EC), Digital Transformation of European Industry and
Enterprises; A report of the Strategic Policy Forum on Digital Entrepreneurship, available from:
http://ec.europa.eu/DocsRoom/documents/9462/attachments/1/translations/en/renditions/native
Fischer, E., and Reuber, R. A. (2014). Online entrepreneurial communication: Mitigating uncertainty and
increasing differentiation via Twitter, Journal of Business Venturing (29), 565-583.
Hendrickson et al. (2015). Hendrickson, L., Bucifal, S., Balaguer, A., and Hansell, D. The employment dynamics of
Australian entrepreneurship, Research Paper 4/2015, Department of Industry and Science, September 2015
Kiss, A. N., Danis, W. M., and Cavusgil, S. T. (2012). International entrepreneurship research in emerging
economies: A critical review and research agenda, Journal of Business Venturing (27:2), 266-290.
Lampel, J., Jha, P. P., and Bhalla, A. (2011). Test-Driving the future: How design competitions are changing
innovation, Academy of Management Perspectives (26:2), 71-85.
Mainela, T., Puhakka, V., and Servais, P. (2014). The concept of international opportunity in international
entrepreneurship: A review and a research agenda, International Journal of Management Reviews (16), pp. 105-
129.
Markus and Loebbecke (2013). Markus, M., and Loebbecke, C., Commoditized Digital Processes and Business
Community Platforms: New Opportunities and Challenges for Digital Business Strategies, MIS Quarterly Vol. 37
No. 2, June 2013
Murphy et al (2005). Murphy, P. J., Liao, J., & Welsch, H. P. (2005). A conceptual history of entrepreneurial
thought. Academy of Management Best Papers Proceedings, A1-A6, (AN 18779543)
Nahapiet, J., & Ghoshal, S. (1998). Social capital, intellectual capital, and the organizational advantage. Academy
of management review, 23(2), 242-266.
North, D. C. (1990). Institutions, institutional change and economic performance. Cambridge university press.
OECD (2001). Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), The New Economy: Beyond
the Hype, Final Report on the OECD Growth Project, 2001
PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC). (2014). Australia's Digital IQ. At
http://www.digitalinnovation.pwc.com.au/australia-digital-iq-2014/
PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) (2015). Small business: Digital growth at
9th Annual Conference of the EuroMed Academy of Business 2182
Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Digital Ecosystems ISBN: 978-9963-711-43-7
http://www.digitalinnovation.pwc.com.au/small-business-digital-growth/
Rosenbaum and Cronin (1993).
Rosenbaum, H., and Cronin, B., Digital entrepreneurship: doing business on the information superhighway,
International Journal of information Management (1993), 13 (461-463)
Scott, W. R. (1995). Institutions and organizations (Vol. 2). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Sigfusson, T., and Chetty, S. (2013). Building international entrepreneurial virtual networks in cyberspace, Journal
of World Business (48), 260-270.
Tan, J., Zhang, H., & Wang, L. (2014). Network Closure or Structural Hole? The Conditioning Effects of
NetworkLevel Social Capital on Innovation Performance. Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice.
Yetis-Larsson, Teigland and Dovbysh (2015), Yetis-Larsson, Z., Teigland, R., and Dovbysh O, Networked
Entrepreneurs: How Entrepreneurs Leverage Open Source Software Communities, American Behavioral Scientist
2015, Vol. 59(4) 475491
Zahra (1999). Zahra S., The Changing Rules of Global Competitiveness in the 21st century, Academy of
Management Executive, 1999. No.13, pp. 36-42
Zhao, F., Wallis, J. and Singh, M. (2015). E-government development and the digital economy: A two-way
Relationship, Internet Research: Electronic Networking, Applications and Policy, 25(5), 734-766.
Zheng, H., Li, D., Wu, J., and Xu, Y. (2014). The role of multidimensional social capital in crowdfunding: A
comparative study in China and US, Information & Management (51), 488-496.
... The concept of digital entrepreneurship emerged in the start of 21st century, authors like (Hull, Hung & Hair, 2006;Davidson & Vaast, 2010;Yaghoubi, Salehi, Eftekharian & Samipourgiri, 2012;Digital Entrepreneurship Monitor, 2014;Growth European Union, 2016;Hamid & Khalid, 2016;Leong, Pan & Liu, 2016& Anckar, 2016 & Collier, 2016& Anckar, 2016 and support the theory i.e. Actor Network Theory (Latour, 2005). ...
... Based on findings hypothesis two "H2" is accepted. Results of the study supports the findings of (Zhao & Collier, 2016& Anckar, 2016. Third research objective was to find the moderating role of social capital in relationship of digital entrepreneurship with entrepreneurs' innovative behavior. ...
... Study model provides a thorough knowledge of digital entrepreneurship, entrepreneurs' innovative predisposition and social capital. Findings of the study follows and endorsed the suggestions of (DEM, 2014; Zhao & Collier, 2016& Ancker, 2016. Furthermore, this study contributes/innovates in actor network theory by inclusion of social capital as moderator and analyzed its effect on relationship of digital entrepreneurship with entrepreneurs' innovative predisposition to make decisions for the betterment of digital entrepreneurs and society. ...
Article
To cope with the challenges of the digital era, entrepreneurs hunted a novel version of entrepreneurship i.e. digital entrepreneurship. Digital entrepreneurship is the process of hunting opportunities by using the digital technologies and information communication technologies (ICTs) for launching startups and revolutionizing existing corporations. Aim of the current research is to find out the moderating role of social capital in the relationship of digital entrepreneurship with entrepreneurs’ innovative predisposition. Researcher collected primary data (cross-sectional) from the digital entrepreneurs of Pakistan by distributing well-structured developed and adapted questionnaire. Current study applied various descriptive and inferential tests to analyze the phenomenon. Results elaborated that the instrument used for data collection is reliable, valid and the data collected through the scale is normal. Results also revealed that there is significant relationship among digital entrepreneurship, entrepreneurs’ innovative predisposition and social capital. Furthermore, it is revealed that there is significant influence of digital entrepreneurship on entrepreneurs’ innovative predisposition. Analysis also identifies that social capital does act as enhancing moderator in between predictor and criterion variable. It is concluded from the findings of the study that digital entrepreneurship plays an important role in improving the innovative predisposition of entrepreneurs that are pivotal for the economic growth of the region as well as country. So, this study contributes in actor network theory by inclusion of social capital as moderator and analyzed its effect on relationship of digital entrepreneurship with entrepreneurs’ innovative predisposition to make decisions for the betterment of digital entrepreneurs and society.
... Organizations can operate more dynamically and cost-effectively, resulting in new entrepreneurial activities and beneficial corporate outcomes (Hull et al., 2007). A study conducted in Australia revealed that small and medium-sized enterprises actively exploit the latest technologies to improve communication and business operations increase their revenues by 15% and hired employers twice as many compared to Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs) that use less technology (Zhao andCollier, 2016:2176). Oyson (2011) emphasized that new technologies are the driving force for small business internationalization. ...
... In addition, it was observed that the articles in this study did not refer to any theory. When the articles out of Turkey were investigated, it was seen that social network theory, social capital theory, institutional theory, intersectionary theory, dynamic capability theory, theory of planned behavior, and the trust theory have been used (Anim-Yeboah, et.al, 2020;Dy, Marlow and Martin, 2017;Zhao and Collier, 2016). In future studies researchers may use these theories to form a theoretical basis in their studies. ...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of this study is to conduct a systematic literature review of digital entrepreneurship in Turkish literature. It is seen that the concept of digital entrepreneurship is discussed in Turkish literature as "e-entrepreneurship", "electronic entrepreneurship", "web entrepreneurship", "internet entrepreneurship", "computer entrepreneurship", "information entrepreneurship" and "online entrepreneurship". From this point forth, academic articles in Turkish literature-including the Turkish translation of all these concepts that refer to digital entrepreneurship (dijital girişimcilik) in articles' titles-were examined following the systematic literature review method by using Google Scholar. Studies such as book chapters , papers, thesis and reports are excluded from the scope of the research. As a result, it is seen that research in Turkish literature are not carried out in parallel with the developments in the field of digital entrepreneurship. Based on the research findings, a limited number of articles are found to be related to digital entrepreneurship in Turkish literature. Furthermore, the examined articles are found to be focused on digital entrepreneurship from a conceptual point of view. The high ratio of overview studies may arise from the need to explain each of the concepts that are served as a substitute of digital entrepreneurship in separate articles. In addition, it is noticed that there is no reference to a specific theory in the articles examined in the study. Based on all these findings, suggestions for future studies are proposed.
... Nowadays, digitalisation is part of new enterprises, helping them grow and succeed, with significantly reduced costs (Zhao et al., 2015;Zhao and Alan, 2016). European Commission (2015) reported that European SMEs that embrace digital technologies grow two to three times faster comparing to others. ...
... However, with increased competitive global marketplace, entrepreneurship has transformed from the traditional business strategy to include digital based ventures (Hull et al. 2007). Digital entrepreneurship, which is a critical pillar in economic development (Zhao and Collier 2016), is a business venture or an innovative idea associated to some extent with digital goods, services, activity, and/or exchange (Yaghoubi et al. 2012;Turban et al. 2008;European Commission 2015). It may also be termed cyber-entrepreneurship (Carrier et al. 2004) or entrepreneurship in digital space (Hafezieh et al. 2011). ...
Article
ABSTRACT Social media platforms have transformed entrepreneurial activities. These social platforms are used for communication and marketing, connecting current and prospective customers to service providers, and connecting and engaging marketers to end users. Instagram is one of the fastest growing and most popular social platforms for socialization, personal indulgence, and information and product sharing. Based on this premise, it is important to understand the role that Instagram plays in digital entrepreneurship. In order to have a better understanding of the socioeconomic implications of the use of social media, this article analyzed secondary and primary data, direct and participant observations, and inductive reasoning. It presents Instagram's visual power and high number of followers, which enhance sales and attract a new set of entrepreneurs who would otherwise be disadvantaged as a result of cultural, economic, and political barriers.
... Nowadays, digitalisation is part of new enterprises, helping them grow and succeed, with significantly reduced costs (Zhao et al., 2015;Zhao and Alan, 2016). European Commission (2015) reported that European SMEs that embrace digital technologies grow two to three times faster comparing to others. ...
Article
The current trend of new technologies allows us to witness and experience unprecedented growth in digital entrepreneurship. The current state of the art suggests that digital entrepreneurship can be predicted by digital entrepreneurial intentions, in turn driven by attitudes, and understanding the factors impacting decision-making can therefore be very valuable. While most research has been conducted in post-industrial countries, emerging countries have been neglected. Formerly Ottoman and later a laggard constituent of Yugoslavia, Kosovo is now a nation of high-growth and rapid modernisation, and yet little research has focused on such countries. This paper contributes to this gap in term of knowledge, particularly understanding the factors that impact digital intentions and attitudes, as predictors of digital entrepreneurial activity. Findings reveal that, digital entrepreneurship education and interaction with role models positively impact attitudes toward digital entrepreneurship. Implications are discussed with recommendations.
... Digital entrepreneurship is also understood as an entrepreneurial subcategory in which some or all physical assets in traditional organizations have been digitized [4] or as sales of online goods or services through e-networks [7]. Digital entrepreneurship has been seen as an important pillar of entrepreneurial work for economic development, job creation, and innovation in many countries [8]. ...
Article
The concept of digital entrepreneurship, which is a result of rapid technological advances, can be defined as the transformation of processes or methods. Thanks to the increase in digital transformations, digital entrepreneurship is seen as a key reference for innovation, economic prosperity, and unemployment. Lately, fierce competition caused by the Covid-19 pandemic has resulted in the growing importance of digital entrepreneurship. This article aims to discuss the differences between digital entrepreneurship when compared to traditional entrepreneurship after giving the definition, importance, chronological development, types, and relative advantages. In addition, the article reserves some room for examples of digital entrepreneurship, on both domestic and global scales. By employing document analysis, a qualitative research method, we have analyzed three giant digital entrepreneurs (Getir, Yemeksepeti, and Trendyol) concerning various dimensions. In the study, we have aimed to reach different sources, including news, interviews, and digital conversations in addition to peer-reviewed articles. In sum, we have analyzed the cases under four categories as characteristics of digital entrepreneurs, characteristics of digital firms, processes of digital entrepreneurship, and relative pros and cons of digital entrepreneurship.
Article
Full-text available
The main purpose of this article is to highlight the critical importance of entrepreneurial mindsets in the COVID-19 era. To this end, it is about understanding the nature of the different existing entrepreneurial mindsets by appreciating the level of digital maturity of Algerian companies. To do this, we conducted a qualitative field study based on an interview guide presented to 17 managers, structured around five dimensions that reflect the level of digital maturity, namely: Strategy, organization, staff, technology, data. F o u r different entrepreneurial states of mind emerge from our case study: "Digital mindset", "Joining mindset", "Beginner mindset" and "Out mindset".
Chapter
The rapid developments in information, communication, and transportation have led to an increase in competition between enterprises. As a result, entrepreneurs striving to survive in the global competition have begun to invest in “digital” competition, which differs from traditional entrepreneurship as it does not require large amounts of capital for its establishment. It enables entrepreneurship to operate all around the world with the internet. This chapter focuses on the differences between digital and traditional enterprises, emphasizing the importance of digital enterprises. According to this purpose, the study employed SWOT analysis to identify Turkish digital enterprises' strengths and weaknesses in relation to the corresponding opportunities and threats.
Chapter
There is still lack of a clear conceptual framework to examine a successful digital entrepreneurship within the developing and emerging contexts despite calls by previous scholars. Also, recent studies shown that majority of the digital enterprises studies available today are mostly from the Western world. Thus, there are only few studies on digital enterprises studies emanating from the developing and emerging countries in the Middle-East and Africa continents. Based on the evidence from the literature, this paper provides an overview of digital entrepreneurship, identifies key variables that determine a successful digital entrepreneurship and then provides a conceptual model to guide the understanding of a successful digital entrepreneurship development within the context of developing and emerging economies. The paper offered some implications for digital entrepreneurs, policy makers and some other people in the business of digital entrepreneurship in Saudi Arabia.
Research
Full-text available
This research paper is the first in a series to explore the dynamics of employment and productivity growth in Australian firms using the newly created Expanded Analytical Business Longitudinal Database. This paper examines the contribution of young firms, particularly start-ups, to net job creation in the Australian economy between 2001-2011. The results show that young SMEs contribute disproportionately to job creation. Young SMEs (firms aged 0-5 years) made the highest contribution to net job creation in Australia (40 per cent) and start-up activity (firms aged 0-2 years) is responsible for most of this growth. Australia's start-up activity is high but they tend to reach smaller sizes relative to other OECD countries examined to date. A very small fraction (3 per cent) of start-ups drive the majority (77 per cent) of their post-entry job creation. These high growth start-ups also show superior sales and profit performance but lower labour productivity performance compared to other surviving start-ups. JEL Codes: J21, L26, M13, O31, O57
Article
Full-text available
Our paper presents a conceptual history of the development of the entreprenership field. The dynamism of conceptual movements in the entrepreneurship field has created theory development marked by volatile concepts and transient scholars. Nonetheless, it is the fastest growing field in the domain of business studies and the fastest growing division in the Academy of Management. We undertake to chronicle key concepts driving this recent activity by beginning with prehistoric conceptual foundations of entrepreneurship and tracing them into the present day. Our analysis employs a logical mechanism of conjecture and refutation to illustrate the emergence, rise, re-emergence, and/or decline of key theories and concepts within the context of (a) prehistoric, (b) classical, (c) neoclassical, (d) Austrian market process, and (e) multidisciplinary conceptual movements. The contributions of our paper include a clearer perspective on the conceptual roots of the entrepreneurship field as a scholarly area and the relevance of influential conceptual notions and their impact on entrepreneurial thought (e.g., arbitraging market, equilibrium models). Contributions also include a contextualizing of contemporary entrepreneurship theory, such as recent work focusing on the role of opportunities in the entrepreneurial discovery process. Finally, we detail implications for the way ahead in the entrepreneurship field as a scholarship-based discipline.
Article
Full-text available
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to capture and understand the nature of the relationship between e-government development and the digital economy. Design/methodology/approach – Drawing on the Technology Acceptance Model and Fountain’s technology enactment theory, a multidimensional research model was developed. The model was tested empirically through an international study of 67 countries using reputable archival data, primarily including the UN’s e-government survey and the Economist Intelligence Unit’s digital economy rankings. Findings – The empirical findings indicate a strong positive reciprocal (two-way) relationship between e-government development and the digital economy. This finding provides empirical evidence to support the general notion of “co-evolution” between technology and organisations. The study also finds that along with social, economic, political, technological and demographic factors, certain national cultural characteristics have significant effects on the digital economy and e-government development. Research limitations/implications – Relying on archival global data sets, this study is constrained by the coverage and formulation of the data set indices, the sample size (67 countries), and the impossibility of detecting errors that may occur in the process of data collection. Therefore, caution should be taken when making generalisations about the findings of this study. Originality/value – The paper addresses a deficit of empirical research that is supported by sound and established theories to explain short-term dynamics and the long-term impact of the digital economy on public administration. The study contributes to a more accurate and comprehensive understanding of the dynamic relationship between e-government development and the digital economy.
Article
Full-text available
Over the last three decades, the prevailing view of information technology strategy has been that it is a functional-level strategy that must be aligned with the firm's chosen business strategy. Even within this socalled alignment view, business strategy directed IT strategy. During the last decade, the business infrastructure has become digital with increased interconnections among products, processes, and services. Across many firms spanning different industries and sectors, digital technologies (viewed as combinations of information, computing, communication, and connectivity technologies) are fundamentally transforming business strategies, business processes, firm capabilities, products and services, and key interfirm relationships in extended business networks. Accordingly, we argue that the time is right to rethink the role of IT strategy, from that of a functional-level strategy-aligned but essentially always subordinate to business strategy-to one that reflects a fusion between IT strategy and business strategy. This fusion is herein termed digital business strategy. We identify four key themes to guide our thinking on digital business strategy and help provide a framework to define the next generation of insights. The four themes are (1) the scope of digital business strategy, (2) the scale of digital business strategy, (3) the speed of digital business strategy, and (4) the sources of business value creation and capture in digital business strategy. After elaborating on each of these four themes, we discuss the success metrics and potential performance implications from pursuing a digital business strategy. We also show how the papers in the special issue shed light on digital strategies and offer directions to advance insights and shape future research.
Article
Scholars of the theory of the firm have begun to emphasize the sources and conditions of what has been described as “the organizational advantage,” rather than focus on the causes and consequences of market failure. Typically, researchers see such organizational advantage as accruing from the particular capabilities organizations have for creating and sharing knowledge. In this article we seek to contribute to this body of work by developing the following arguments: (1) social capital facilitates the creation of new intellectual capital; (2) organizations, as institutional settings, are conducive to the development of high levels of social capital; and (3) it is because of their more dense social capital that firms, within certain limits, have an advantage over markets in creating and sharing intellectual capital. We present a model that incorporates this overall argument in the form of a series of hypothesized relationships between different dimensions of social capital and the main mechanisms and processes necessary for the creation of intellectual capital.
Article
Tomorrow's global marketplace will reward companies that value entrepreneurial risk-taking, invest heavily in developing their intellectual capital, promote individual growth, and adopt policies that are environmentally friendly. Successful competitiveness in the 21st century will demand the use of visionary and dedicated leadership, a balanced scorecard that enhances corporate accountability, and sustained investment in creating dynamic capabilities. It will also require the effective management of intangible resources and assets to achieve growth. A number of important conclusions are evident from the articles appearing in this special issue.
Article
In the contemporary economy, work is increasingly becoming freelance-based while moving online. Open source software communities are rapidly becoming arenas in which individuals identify, cocreate, and realize opportunities through shared resources and expertise. Operating in a communal setting, these individuals, who we label open entrepreneurs, work and collaborate with members of their own open source community. In this article, we investigate how networked work benefits open entrepreneurs, and in particular, we focus on how open entrepreneurs are connected to other community members and how these networks affect entrepreneurial processes. Our results suggest that through different aspects of networked work, open entrepreneurs fulfill their profit motives not only in the short term but also in the long term as their networking activities facilitate the overall functioning and sustainability of the community.