Study Overview

We hope to work with collaborators that will help us collect data from organizations with the following criteria:

  • Entrepreneurial organizations with 250 or fewer employees
  • Participants must be entrepreneurs themselves or employed by an entrepreneurial firm
  • The entrepreneurial firm need not be highly profitable but nevertheless must be operational

Summary of the E-WORLD Project

E-WORLD blends two themes: entrepreneurship and international perspectives. E-WORLD is proposed to be a cross cultural research program based on data to be collected by numerous scholars from several different countries. The objectives of The E-WORLD Project are to investigate several theoretical issues. The following research questions will be explored:

  1.  Are different entrepreneurial characteristics needed for success in different international cultures?  What does it take to be a successful entrepreneur in various countries?

  2. Which characteristics of successful entrepreneurs are specific to which international cultures?  Which characteristics are universal, meaning they are needed across most all international cultures?

  3. What cultural characteristics within a country make certain entrepreneurial characteristics more important than other characteristics?

  4. How can an entrepreneur possessing certain characteristics be fitted or matched with the requirements of a particular culture to increase the likelihood of entrepreneurial success?

  5. How can critical entrepreneurial competencies be trained or developed in a particular culture?  How can these competencies be trained and developed in expatriate managerial development programs?

In essence, we are taking both a contingency and an implicit/attributional approach to entrepreneurship. It is anticipated that a typology would be developed based on the results of our research whereby entrepreneurial traits necessary for success would be identified both within and between countries. This information could be used for selection and training purposes, especially those entrepreneurs desiring to operate in cross-cultural contexts.

The current research proposal is similar in scope to the GLOBE project. An exhaustive research effort was undertaken entitled “Global Leadership and Organizational Behavior Effectiveness” (GLOBE) to conceptualize key leadership differences in the global environment.  The study lasted for ten years and involved 170 researchers gathering information from 17,000 managers in 62 different cultures. The managers worked in the telecommunications, food, and banking industries.  The effects of several cultural dimensions (performance orientation, assertiveness, future orientation, humane orientation, institutional collectivism, in-group collectivism, gender egalitarianism, power distance, and uncertainty avoidance) were studied to grasp their impact on leader expectations and organizational practices. Our research program would follow the same approach but would study entrepreneurial traits.

The program is to be executed in three phases:

  1. Establish research relationships and collaborators; develop research instrument (year 1)
  2. Data collection involving all research collaborators (year 2)
  3. Application of research findings for training and development purposes (year 3 and beyond)

Research Collaborator Duties, Expectations and Benefits

            The following is a list of duties and expectations required from E-WORLD research collaborators.           

  1. Host country research collaborators will work under the direction of the E-WORLD program directors
  2. Secure contacts in the host country for the collection of quantitative and qualitative data
  3. Direct the collection of data in the host country
  4. Conduct focus groups if needed
  5. Give all data obtained to the E-WORLD program directors
  6. Help program directors understand cultural factors that might help explain the data or that are relevant to other aspects of the project
  7. Co-author with program directors a paper for publication focusing on results for the host country

Research collaborator benefits include the opportunity to publish results from their own country. This will be done in collaboration with the program directors. Research collaborators will also be allowed to keep the data that they collect from their country. After the five research questions have been investigated, all research collaborators will be given full access to the entire E-WORLD database. Collaborators will be free to form their own hypotheses and studies and use the E-WORLD data to test those hypotheses in their own studies.

 

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Copyright © 2006 Elizabeth Rozell and Wesley Scroggins
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