Printer Friendly

A conceptual model of entrepreneurship as firm behavior: a critique and extension.

The study of entrepreneurship as a firm-level phenomenon has come of age. While the findings of empirical research in this area have been preliminary and tentative, this young body of literature shows great vitality and rigor. This increasing rigor is evidenced by a growing attention to methodological concerns and analytical tools (Low & MacMillan, 1988; Jennings & Lumpkin, 1989; Wortman, 1987). Equally interesting is the growing focus on constructing models and theories of entrepreneurship.

Scientific progress is fueled by the emergence of paradigms (Kuhn, 1970), often codified in models and rival theories. For this reason, the recent contribution by Covin and Slevin (1991) of "A Conceptual Model of Entrepreneurship as Firm Behavior" is a most welcome addition to the literature. It sets the stage for a promising research agenda that, undoubtedly, will enrich the field. The Covin-Slevin model (hereafter referred to as "the model") integrates research findings to date, relates important constructs into a clear framework, theorizes about the contribution of entrepreneurship to company performance, articulates the conditions under which this contribution to company performance can materialize, and outlines salient research questions that emerge from the model. Scholars of firm-level entrepreneurship will agree that this is a major undertaking and an important contribution that will shape future research in this area.

It is this potential impact on future research direction that motivates this rebuttal. The Covin-Slevin model requires some revisions, refinements, and extensions. Therefore, this article focuses on four issues embodied in the model. The discussion will cover: (1) the nature of entrepreneurial behavior; (2) the locus of entrepreneurship; (3) redundancy in some constructs in the model; and (4) the nature of the link between entrepreneurial posture and firm performance.


The model is described as behavioral in nature. This orientation is consistent with current thinking on the topic; what makes a firm entrepreneurial is its strong commitment to product and technological innovation, risk taking, and proactiveness (Miller, 1983). However, the current model does not specify the nature of entrepreneurship. Specifically, although the authors refer to "entrepreneurial posture," it is unclear whether the authors refer to: (1) the intensity of this behavior (Zahra, 1991, 1993); (2) the formality of entrepreneurial activities (Burgelman, 1983a, b, c; Pinchot, 1985); (3) the types of entrepreneurial activities a firm undertakes to rejuvenate or renew itself and redefine its business concept (Guth & Ginsberg, 1989; Schollhammer, 1982); or (4) the duration of such efforts. Although these dimensions are interrelated, they are distinct and appear to capture different aspects of the domain of firm-level entrepreneurship. By examining one of these dimensions, scholars only capture a "slice" of a firm's entrepreneurship activities. Besides failing to recognize the "wholeness" of entrepreneurship, ignoring one or more of these dimensions can lead to underestimation of the value of entrepreneurship for company performance.

Lack of specificity about the nature of entrepreneurship has other negative implications. For instance, focusing on the intensity of entrepreneurial behavior raises a question about the appropriate level of a firm's commitment to risk taking and the implications of these activities for company performance. As Miller and Friesen (1982) have suggested, excessive entrepreneurship can be as dysfunctional as a lack of commitment to entrepreneurship. Therefore, it is important to recognize and analyze the extent to which the firm undertakes entrepreneurial activities in order to evaluate the performance implications of these ventures.

The Covin-Slevin model appears to emphasize the intensity dimension of entrepreneurship. This focus is appropriate: the majority of past research follows this tradition (e.g., Miller, 1983; Covin & Covin, 1990; Covin & Slevin, 1986, 1988, 1989; Zahra, 1991, 1993). Typically, this research suggests that increased entrepreneurship is associated positively with company financial performance--a proposition that has not received much attention in the empirical literature, as will be discussed later. Still, these studies (and the current model) tend to ignore Miller and Friesen's (1982) warning that increased entrepreneurship beyond a particular threshold can harm a company's financial performance.

The Covin-Slevin model (and research in this area) would benefit from recognizing other dimensions of firm-level entrepreneurship. For example, Burgelman's (1983a, 1991) work has established the need for differentiating formal ("induced") and informal ("autonomous") entrepreneurship activities. Formal efforts are sanctioned by senior executives and are pursued according to a deliberate strategic mandate. Informal activities reflect the autonomous efforts undertaken by individual members of an organization. Pinchot (1985) has popularized the importance of informal efforts ("intrapreneurship") carried out by groups of executives, middle managers, or employees. Since formal and informal entrepreneurial activities seem to manifest themselves in different ways, it is important to consider both types in investigating their consequences for company financial performance.

One can argue that the Covin-Slevin model (and similar research) seems to underestimate the contribution of informal firm-level entrepreneurship to a company's financial performance. Undoubtedly, the informal nature of these activities makes it difficult to document their existence, form, and contribution to company performance. However, to help advance theory building in this area, the Covin-Slevin model would benefit greatly from considering both the formal and informal types of entrepreneurship, thereby encouraging future researchers to think about the full range of firm-level entrepreneurship.

The Covin-Slevin model would also benefit from recognizing different types of entrepreneurial activities. For example, Schollhammer (1982) focuses on five types of internal corporate ventures: administrative, opportunistic, imitative, acquisitive, and incubative (new venture management). Each type requires different managerial skills and company resources. Thus, to treat all firm-level entrepreneurial activities as requiring the same skills is misleading. To avoid this problem, it would be useful to extend Covin and Slevin's model by specifying the type of entrepreneurial venture. This extension will help to encourage researchers to classify different firm-level entrepreneurship activities. In turn, this will help to set the stage for examining the associations between the external, strategic, and internal variables and different types of entrepreneurship.

The model will benefit also from recognizing the duration of different components of firm-level entrepreneurship. Some components last a few weeks or months (as in some acquisitive or opportunistic ventures); others span several years or even decades, as in quantum changes through the redefinition of the firm's business concept. Such innovation and experimentation are currently taking place in U.S. companies to enhance their capacity to pioneer technological and product change, thus surpassing the achievements of their global rivals.

In brief, the Covin-Slevin model should consider the intensity, formality, type (locus), and duration of firm-level entrepreneurship. Failure to distinguish these four dimensions may inadvertently lead to misspecification of the relationship of entrepreneurship activities to other salient issues, such as company performance. Conversely, including these dimensions in the model will permit an investigation of the full contribution of entrepreneurship activities to company performance.


A review of past research shows increased recognition of several levels of analysis in studying entrepreneurship. Unfortunately, a formal attempt to integrate these levels into a coherent framework is lacking. Some researchers have focused on the corporate level of analysis (Burgelman, 1991; Zahra, 1991). Others have focused primarily on the business (or strategic business unit, SBU) level (MacMillan & Day, 1987; Shortell & Zajac, 1988; Zahra, 1993; Zajac, Golden, & Shortell, 1991). Still others have focused on entrepreneurial activities at the functional level of the analysis, such as marketing (Morris, Davis, & Ewing, 1988; Morris & Gordon, 1987; Murray, 1985). Two points emerge from these diverse efforts: (1) entrepreneurship activities occur at (and cut across) multiple levels within a firm, and (2) a generic model of firm-level entrepreneurship--such as Covin and Slevin's--should account for these multiple levels in conceptualizing the entrepreneurship-performance relationship.

There are three possible advantages for incorporating level-specific issues into the model. First, it draws attention to the unique needs of particular entrepreneurship activities at different organizational levels. It is possible that the factors that stimulate entrepreneurship at one level of the firm may impede it at a different level. For example, organizational political factors may encourage the pursuit of a particular entrepreneurial venture at the divisional level but limited financial resources may discourage the same project at the firm-level of the analysis.

Second, recognizing different levels of the analysis draws attention to possible interactions of different variables across these different levels; this interaction often determines the success of entrepreneurship. For instance, understanding entrepreneurship at the SBU-level may require an examination of the potentially moderating effect of firm (corporate) or functional level variables (Sykes, 1986). Consider, for instance, a recent study of the role of entrepreneurship in reformulating Intel's business concept (Burgelman, 1991). The study suggests that entrepreneurial activities were the outcome of the interaction of individuals and groups of managers, at multiple levels within the firm. Thus, using the typical practice of measuring overall corporate or business entrepreneurship without considering the influence of the various levels of interactions may result in misleading findings.

Third, and finally, integration of multiple levels of analysis into the Covin-Slevin model will help future scholars to synthesize relevant research results. At some point, it may be possible for future scholars to review findings on the antecedents of entrepreneurship at different levels of analysis and conduct meta-analyses of these variables.

By designating their model as firm-level, Covin and Slevin succeed in addressing the thorny issue of how one can integrate the effect of different initiatives at different levels. Yet, the implications of these diverse initiatives for a theory of entrepreneurship are unclear. For instance, is a firm's entrepreneurship (the focus of Covin & Slevin's model) the sum of different initiatives at different levels? Does firm-level entrepreneurship represent a much higher level of abstraction than other levels within the company, such as divisional, functional, or project-related activities? If so, what is the relationship among these different initiatives? Obviously, no single model can address these questions. Still, we should not side-step the thorny issue of the appropriate level of analysis. Future empirical research should help to clarify the relationships among these different levels.

Care must be exercised in using the model for other reasons. For instance, the model does not consider the different issues associated with internal corporate venturing activities (Nielsen, Peters, & Hirsch, 1985; Zajac, Golden, & Shortell, 1991) and externally focused ventures that require the participation of multiple firms (Zahra, 1991). Are these ventures subject to the same external, strategic, and internal variables? One can speculate that these 'antecedent' conditions are relevant to understanding different ventures but to varying degree. Still, each has its success requirements. In the case of external ventures (where several firms are involved), success may depend on the firms' unique environmental, strategic, and internal variables in addition to the competencies and skills that emerge from the involvement of multiple firms. These forces may determine the success or failure of external ventures. Thus, a model of entrepreneurship should acknowledge the importance and effect of these 'invisible' forces. Additionally, it should recognize the impact of the amount of formal controls exercised by participating companies on the success of the ventures (Miller, Spann, & Lerner, 1991).

Discussing the locus of a company's entrepreneurial activities draws attention to the special needs of international ventures--an issue that is ignored in the Covin-Slevin model. While some ventures are created within established firms (units) in search of growth opportunities, others are created with an international focus from the start. Sometimes these international start-up innovative ventures are initiated outside the existing corporate structure to give them freedom and autonomy. Admittedly, there is little empirical research on the unique predictors and outcomes of internationally focused entrepreneurial activities. McDougall's study (1989) is a rare exception. Noting the emerging convergence of the fields of entrepreneurship and international business, McDougall draws attention to the need to study international entrepreneurship--an important contribution that will no doubt gain recognition with increased scholarship on firm-level entrepreneurship.

In today's global economy, it is unfortunate that research (including my own) has not given sufficient attention to the international dimension of firm entrepreneurship. To overcome this shortcoming, future research may explore: (1) changes in a firm's domain as a reflection of deliberate entrepreneurial activities; (2) the timing of entry into global industries as a manifestation of proactiveness; and (3) changes in the product mix and pattern of competition (as in increased advertising and R&D activities) as an indication of risk-taking behavior. Although these few examples do not fully capture the international dimension of corporate entrepreneurship, they show a need for empirical research in order to determine its effect on company performance.

Moreover, the above examples extend McDougall's (1989) definition of international entrepreneurship as "the development of international new ventures or start-ups that, from their inception, engage in international business, thus viewing their operating domain as international from the initial stages of the firm's operation". International start-ups are only one type of international entrepreneurship. Indeed, if one accepts the Covin-Slevin notion of entrepreneurship, one cannot restrict risk-taking behavior, innovation, and proactiveness only to domestic industries or markets. At a time when established companies, small and large, are entering foreign markets, international entrepreneurship should be defined broadly. Accordingly, I propose the following alternative definition of international entrepreneurship: the study of the nature and consequences of a firm's risk-taking behaviors as it ventures into international markets. By accepting this definition, future scholars can proceed to specify the various forms of risk taking and the approaches (including international start-ups) they follow in the international arena.

Consistent with the proposed definition, future research on international entrepreneurship will advance by exploring the issues identified recently by Ricks, Toyne, and Martinez (1990). This research will benefit most directly from examining the implications of entrepreneurship for defining the concept of the firm and its competitive strategy. Some initial work has begun in this direction, linking domestic and international entrepreneurial activities with a firm's strategic choices and examining the implications of these variables for company performance (Zahra, 1992).

To recap, the above discussion suggests three modifications to the Covin-Slevin model. The first centers on incorporating the specific level of the analysis (corporate, business, and functional) in theorizing about the antecedents of firm-level entrepreneurship. The second entails making a clear distinction between new ventures within an established firm and "stand alone" ventures. The third suggests a change in the model to differentiate between domestic and international ventures/entrepreneurship efforts.


Throughout the article, the authors advance several interesting propositions about the conditions leading to higher entrepreneurship activities and the associations between these activities and company performance. However, sometimes the proposed antecedent conditions lack clarity. For instance, the concept of technological sophistication is introduced and is posited to have a positive association with the entrepreneurial posture. Unfortunately, the concept of technological sophistication is not defined sufficiently and the rationale for the hypothesized positive association with entrepreneurship is lacking.

Similarly, other propositions advanced in the article are not clearly articulated. For instance, "entrepreneurial posture is positively related to the ability of a firm to quickly bring new products to market". Proposition 24 then suggests that this association will be highest among firms that are able to quickly introduce new products. The problem is that the concept of entrepreneurial posture advanced in the article embodies a firm's strong commitment to product innovation and to proactiveness (defined as being among the very first to introduce new products and technologies to their markets). Thus, there is a possibility that the concept of "entrepreneurial posture" and a firm's activities regarding a new product introduction are conceptually redundant. Propositions 25, 26, 29, and 30--which relate to a company's commitment to research and development (R&D) and its association with company performance--show similar conceptual redundancy. For instance, Miller and Friesen (1982) used companies' commitment to R&D activities to separate conservative and entrepreneurial firms.

The "internal variable" set of the Covin-Slevin model deserves close scrutiny. The authors highlight the following variables as important to understanding a firm's entrepreneurial posture: top management values and philosophies; company resources and competencies; organizational culture; and organizational structure. This impressive list identifies key variables that have been the subject of discussion in the literature; each dimension has the potential of influencing the direction, nature, and effect of entrepreneurial activities.

Several problems arise from incorporating the above four dimensions in the model. The most notable is the possible conceptual overlapping among them. For example, management philosophy and organizational culture have been used interchangeably by some researchers (Schein, 1985). The close link between managerial philosophies and organizational structure has also been recognized in the literature (Weick, 1987). Further, the association between the culture and structure has invited many empirical examinations. Obviously, these conceptual ambiguities are not of Professors Covin and Slevin's making. The literature is messy and vague. Some authors continually introduce concepts without relating them to established theories and frameworks. However, these ambiguities beg researchers to reconsider a different and perhaps more parsimonious classification of the internal variables that may affect entrepreneurial postures. At a minimum, scholars can employ analytic techniques (e.g., factor analysis) that will help establish the different dimensions of the internal variable set suggested by Covin and Slevin (1991).

Not to contradict the call for parsimony in the preceding paragraph, the current model ignores the managerial processes associated with entrepreneurial activities. While some of these processes may have been captured in discussing a company's organizational structure, other activities remain unexplored in the model. For instance, the fairness of the criteria used by senior executives in considering different new ventures can have a profound effect on the success or failure of the entrepreneurial posture of the firm. Further, when perceptions of fairness prevail in a firm, both employees and managers are encouraged to undertake or champion innovative ventures. Fairness is more than a managerial philosophy; it is a managerial practice or process. To subsume it under the umbrella of managerial philosophy is, in my judgment, tantamount to ignoring its possible profound effect. The business press is full of stories of "refugees from the corporate world" who have created thousands of new companies. These entrepreneurs complain about managerial processes that led to the unfair treatment of their innovative ideas by their corporate managers, to the point that they felt compelled to quit their jobs and start their own businesses. Emerging models of firm entrepreneurship must, somehow, capture these and similar factors.

Participation in the design and development of the new venture is a second issue worthy of investigation in future studies. While an organic organizational structure often encourages such participation (Jennings & Seaman, 1990), one should not equate the two variables. For instance, an organic structure may encourage the speedy dissemination of information about new ventures and promote discussions of different ideas. However, it does not guarantee the actual participation of different individuals or groups in deciding the fate of the new venture. Consequently, the Covin-Slevin model would benefit from recognizing the importance of organizational processes that can spark entrepreneurial activities in the firm. This recognition is overdue; only a few studies have been published on this topic despite the acceptance in the literature of these possible process-related antecedents of entrepreneurial activities (Miller, 1983; Burgelman & Sayles, 1986; Kanter, 1986, 1989).

A possible source of confusion in the literature is the inability to separate managerial processes that encourage participation from those that promote entrepreneurship. One can only hope that this distinction will become clearer as research on firm entrepreneurship grows. The difference, I believe, lies in the purpose or intent of managerial actions. Participation in evaluating a new venture proposal does not increase entrepreneurship per se but it creates the administrative context within which people can advance innovative ideas. In other words, an organic structure per se does not guarantee this participation, no more that it guarantees fairness in evaluating new ventures.

The Covin-Slevin model should also recognize the crucial effect of senior executives' background, values and experience as possible antecedents of a firm's entrepreneurial posture. Some research has already established the importance of these variables for explaining variations among firms in their entrepreneurial activities (Bantel & Jackson, 1989; Hitt, Hoskisson, & Ireland, 1990; Hurst, Rush, & White, 1989). Executives' background variables, no doubt, affect several of the "internal variables" listed in the model. By influencing these internal variables, senior executives shape their firm's entrepreneurial posture. Therefore, the effect of senior executives' variables on entrepreneurship should be recognized in the model. This recognition not only integrates past research findings, but also alerts executives and scholars to the importance of these variables. At a time when U.S. companies are being admonished to take risk, innovate, and pioneer product and technological developments, an analysis of the characteristics of senior executives should be incorporated into models of firm-level entrepreneurship.

Some may believe that by including the variable "top management values and philosophies" in their model, Covin and Slevin have already captured the effect of senior executives on entrepreneurship. The research cited above, however, shows that managers' background variables--separate from their values--have a direct effect on entrepreneurial behavior. Thus, it is prudent to empirically examine the potential effect of both "background" and "values and philosophies" on entrepreneurship.


One must applaud the authors for recognizing the difficulty in determining the implications of a firm's entrepreneurial posture for its financial performance. The authors correctly suggest that such a posture can influence a multitude of financial performance indicators. This proposition is consistent with research findings in this area (MacMillan & Day, 1987; Miller & Camp, 1986; Miller et al., 1991). Furthermore, they appropriately note the paucity of empirical documentation of the effect of entrepreneurship on company financial performance.

Still, the model would be enhanced by recognizing the possibility that different entrepreneurial postures may influence different dimensions of performance quite differently and perhaps at different points in time. Presently, there is little empirical evidence on the timing of the financial payoff from different entrepreneurial ventures. Scholars should consider the need for this documentation to establish the utility of organizational investments in entrepreneurship activities. This documentation is important also to remind executives that different activities pay off at different points in time--a message that is frequently overlooked in current articles that highlight the virtues and importance of entrepreneurship.

There is also a need to reexamine the positive association between the entrepreneurial posture of a firm and its financial performance, as implied in the last two propositions in the article. Surely, some entrepreneurship activities fail to produce their intended results, notwithstanding organizational investments and managerial dedication to these activities. Moreover, sometimes entrepreneurship activities can pay off primarily by preserving the existence of the firm, rather than improving its revenue generation and profitability activities. Survival and preservation of the company are worthwhile goals for many troubled firms in different sectors of the economy today.

To suggest that firm-type entrepreneurship does not always lead to improvements in growth and profitability does not diminish the potential contribution of entrepreneurship. Some of the very best managerial actions and innovations do not yield measurable financial performance but they define the firm and give meaning to its different activities (Kanter, 1989). Some entrepreneurial efforts fall into this category and, consequently, their financial contributions may be difficult to document. This phenomenon raises another, related issue: What are non-financial implications of a firm's entrepreneurial activities?

The popular literature mentions several possible non-financial outcomes: increasing employee motivation and task involvement; keeping the firm's best and most talented people who might have left for lack of opportunities; and creating a positive organizational culture that encourages the integration of employee and organizational needs (Peters & Waterman, 1982). Clearly, these are worthwhile contributions or by-products of organizational entrepreneurship. Yet, the implications of entrepreneurship for these and similar variables have not been well documented. This is another compelling reason to include them in the Covin-Slevin model.

Fortunately, other researchers have come to recognize the need for non-financial criteria to evaluate the potential effect of entrepreneurship on company performance. For example, in their recent research on evaluating new ventures within established companies, McGrath, Venkatraman, and MacMillan (1992) emphasize three criteria: enhancing the value of the firm, creating worth for customers, and insulating the firm from its competition. These criteria can provide managers with a reliable, intermediate reading of the status and promise of the venture. This valuable addition to the literature sets the stage for additional work that helps to identify a perhaps more encompassing set of criteria that captures the global nature of company performance.

Financial and non-financial criteria can be useful in evaluating the performance of a venture or the payoff from firm-level entrepreneurship at different points in time. For example, non-financial criteria can be insightful in the early years of an entrepreneurial project. Later, managers may wish to rely more heavily on financial than non-financial criteria. This distinction, too, should be incorporated in the model.

In summary, three changes are recommended to revise and extend the Covin-Slevin (1991) propositions regarding the link between entrepreneurship and company performance. First, the model should recognize the financial and non-financial outcomes of entrepreneurship. Second, the model should acknowledge the possibility that growth and profitability are not always guaranteed through firm-type entrepreneurship. Third, it should be recognized that financial and non-financial criteria are useful at different points in the life of an entrepreneurial venture. These three points suggest a need for future empirical research that documents the possible non-financial results of entrepreneurship and relates these results, as appropriate, to company financial performance.


The above discussion suggests several changes in the Covin-Slevin model. A revised model of firm-level entrepreneurship appears in Figure 1.

There are four differences between the revised model and the original one offered by Covin and Slevin (1991). First, the revision highlights a more parsimonious classification of the external environment set than originally suggested. Specifically, it eliminates the technological sophistication variable discussed by Covin and Slevin because that appears to be redundant with environmental dynamism. Of course, dynamism arises from many sources, including technological change that leads to technological sophistication.

The revised model adds another important environmental attribute: munificence, which refers to the abundance of opportunities for innovation in the industry. This attribute is important for entrepreneurship research because some environments may impose "upper limits" on what a firm can do with regard to innovation, proactiveness and risk-taking behaviors. Conversely, other environments can be more hospitable, inviting entrepreneurial ventures.

It is also useful to point out that measuring "environment" has been the subject of discussion and debate for more than two decades (Dess & Rasheed, 1991; Prescott, 1986). This debate has resulted in many studies that highlight the "dimensions," "attributes," and "classification" of environments. An unfortunate byproduct of these efforts is that researchers aspire to be comprehensive in capturing the domain of this complex concept. This is apparently the case with the "industry life cycle stage" in the Covin-Slevin model. A problem arises because the industry life cycle stages show variations in the levels of environmental dynamism, hostility, and munificence. Porter (1980, ch. 8) offers a comprehensive discussion of these variations. Consistent with this view, I suggest that Covin and Slevin should select one of the two conceptualizations--that TABULAR DATA OMITTED is, either focus on dynamism, hostility, and munificence, or use the more encompassing concept of the industry life cycle stage.

Second, the revised model adopts a broader definition of a firm's entrepreneurial behavior than originally proposed. It incorporates the previous suggestion to include the intensity, formality, type, and duration of these activities. Moreover, it highlights the need to consider domestic and international entrepreneurial activities.

Third, the internal set has been revised in several ways. The revision highlights four subsets of variables: (1) managerial values and background (including age, past experience, and functional expertise); (2) organizational structure (including centralization, formalization, complexity, and organicity); (3) managerial process (including participation and fairness); and (4) organizational culture (including openness and empowerment). Since the relationship among the four sets is empirical in nature, it is important for future researchers to examine their links to determine if a more parsimonious classification of the subsets can be found.

Fourth, and finally, the revised model considers both financial and non-financial outcomes of entrepreneurial activities. It also proposes that some non-financial benefits from entrepreneurship can produce financial results.

The above suggested revisions help to refocus the 44 propositions offered by Covin and Slevin (1991). Table 1 also presents a proposed set of propositions that reduces redundancy in the original set offered by Covin and Slevin (1991). To enhance the clarity of the presentation, the original propositions are listed first and then the suggested revisions are presented in italics. Accordingly, the deletion of 10 propositions is recommended. Further, revising six other propositions (P 5, 27, 28, 40, 41 & 42) is advised. Table 1 also shows that three new propositions (R 6a, 45 & 46) have been added to Covin and Slevin's list. The remaining 30 propositions represent a sound contribution to the literature, as offered in the original model.


The Covin-Slevin model of entrepreneurship as firm behavior is a timely, interesting and important contribution to the field that will shape the future of empirical research in this area. Grounded in good theory and past empirical research, the model is integrative. However, any single model is, by definition, incomplete. The suggested revisions and refinements hope to enhance the completeness of the model and increase its impact on directing the course of future research on firm-level entrepreneurship.


Bantel, K., & Jackson, S. (1989). Top management and innovations in banking: Does the composition of the top team make a difference? Strategic Management Journal, 10(special issue), 87-105.

Burgelman, R. A. (1983a). A model of the interaction of strategic behavior, corporate context and the concept of strategy. Academy of Management Review, 8(1), 61-70.

Burgelman, R. A. (1983b). A process model of internal corporate venturing in the diversified major firm. Administrative Science Quarterly, 28, 223-244.

Burgelman, R. A. (1983c). Corporate entrepreneurship and strategic management: Insights from a process study. Management Science, 29(12), 1349-1363.

Burgelman, R. A. (1991). Intraorganizational ecology of strategy making and organizational adaptation: Theory and field research. Organizational Science, 2(3), 239-262.

Burgelman, R. A., & Sayles, L. R. (1986). Inside corporate innovation strategy, structure and managerial skills. New York: The Free Press.

Covin, J. G., & Covin, T. J. (1990). Competitive aggressiveness, environmental context, and small film performance. Entrepreneurship Theory & Practice, 14(4), 35-50.

Covin, J. G., & Slevin, D. P. (1986). The development and testing of an organizational-level entrepreneurship scale. In R. Ronstadt, J. A. Hornaday, R. Peterson, & K. H. Vespar (Eds.), Frontiers of entrepreneurship research, pp. 628-639. Wellseley, MA: Babson College.

Covin, J. G., & Slevin, D. P. (1988). The influence of organization structure on the utility of an entrepreneurial top management style. Journal of Management Studies, 25, 217-234.

Covin, J. G., & Slevin, D. P. (1989). Strategic management of small firms in hostile and benign environments. Strategic Management Journal, 10(1), 75-87.

Covin, J. G., & Slevin, D. P. (1991). A conceptual model of entrepreneurship as firm behavior. Entrepreneurship Theory & Practice, 16(1), 7-25.

Dess, G., & Rasheed, A. (1991). Conceptualizing and measuring organizational environments: A critique and suggestions. Journal of Management, 17, 701-710.

Guth, W., & Ginsberg, A. (1989). Guest editor's introduction: Corporate entrepreneurship. Strategic Management Journal, 11(special issue), 5-16.

Jennings, D., & Lumpkin, J. (1989). Functionally modeling corporate entrepreneurship: An empirical integrative analysis. Journal of Management, 15, 485-502.

Jennings, D. F., & Seaman, S. L. (1990). Aggressiveness of response to new business opportunities following deregulation: An empirical study of established financial firms. Journal of Business Venturing, 5(3), 177-189.

Hitt, M., Hoskisson, R. E., & Ireland, R. D. (1990). Mergers and acquisitions and managerial commitment to innovation in M-form firms. Strategic Management Journal, 11(special issue), 29-47.

Hurst, D., Rush, J., & White, R. E. (1989). Top management teams and organizational renewal. Strategic Management Journal, 10(special issue), 87-105.

Kanter, R. M. (1986). Supporting innovation and venture development in established companies. Journal of Business Venturing, 1(1), 47-60.

Kanter, R. M. (1989). When giants learn to dance. New York: Simon & Schuster.

Kuhn, T. (1970). The structure of scientific revolutions, 2nd ed. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Low, M. B., & MacMillan, I. C. (1988). Entrepreneurship: Past research and future challenges. Journal of Management, 14, 139-161.

MacMillan, I. C., & Day, D. L. (1987). Corporate ventures into industrial markets: Dynamics of aggressive entry. Journal of Business Venturing, 2(1), 29-39.

McDougall, P. (1989). International versus domestic entrepreneurship: New venture strategic behavior and industry structure. Journal of Business Venturing, 4, 387-400.

McGrath, R., Venaktraman, S., & MacMillan, I. (1992). Measuring outcomes of corporate venturing: An alternative perspective. Academy of Management Best Paper Proceedings, Las Vegas, Nevada, 85-89.

Miller, A., & Camp, B. (1986). Exploring determinants of success in corporate ventures. Journal of Business Venturing, 1(1), 87-105.

Miller, A., Spann, M. S., & Lerner, L. (1991). Competitive advantages in new corporate ventures: The impact of resource sharing and reporting level. Journal of Business Venturing, 6, 335-350.

Miller, D. (1983). The correlates of entrepreneurship in three types of firms. Management Science, 29, 770-791.

Miller, D., & Friesen, P. H. (1982). Innovation in conservative and entrepreneurial firms: Two models of strategic momentum. Strategic Management Journal, 3, 1-25.

Morris, M. H., Davis, D. L., & Ewing, J. (1988). The role of entrepreneurship in industrial marketing activities. Industrial Marketing Management, 17, 337-346.

Morris, M., & Gordon, P. (1987). The relationship between entrepreneurship and marketing in established firms. Journal of Business Venturing, 2, 247-259.

Murray, J. (1985). Marketing is home for entrepreneurial process. Industrial Marketing Management, 10, 93-99.

Nielsen, R. P., Peters, M. P., & Hirsch, R. D. (1985). Entrepreneurship strategy for internal markets--corporate, non profit, and government institution cases. Strategic Management Journal, 6, 181-190.

Peters, T. J., & Waterman, R. H., Jr. (1982). In search of excellence: Lessons from America's best-run companies. New York: Harper & Row.

Pinchot, C. III. (1985). Intrapreneuring. New York: Harper & Row.

Porter, M. (1980). Competitive strategy. New York: The Free Press.

Prescott, J. (1986). Environments as moderators of the relationship between business strategy and performance. Academy of Management Journal, 29, 329-346.

Ricks, D., Toyne, B., & Martinez, Z. (1990). Recent developments in international management research. Journal of Management 16, 218-253.

Schein, E. (1985). Organizational culture and leadership. Homewood, IL: Irwin.

Schollhammer, H. (1982). Internal corporate entrepreneurship. In D. Sexton & K. H. Vesper (Eds.), Encyclopedia of entrepreneurship, pp. 209-223. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Shortell, S., & Zajac, E. (1988). Internal corporate ventures: Development processes and performance. Strategic Management Journal, 9(6), 527-542.

Sykes, H. B. (1986). The anatomy of a corporate venturing program: Factors influencing success. Journal of Business Venturing, 1(3), 275-293.

Weick, K. (1987). Organizational culture as a source of high reliability. California Management Review, 29(2), 112-127.

Wortman, M. S., Jr. (1987). Entrepreneurship: An integrating typology and evaluation of the empirical research in the field. Journal of Management, 13, 259-279.

Zahra, S. A. (1991). Predictors and financial outcomes of corporate entrepreneurship: An exploratory study. Journal of Business Venturing, 6, 259-285.

Zahra S. A. (1992). Domestic and international focus, technology strategy and company performance. Paper presented at the Academy of Management, Las Vegas, Nevada.

Zahra, S. A. (1993). Environment, corporate entrepreneurship and company performance: A taxonomic approach. Journal of Business Venturing, 8, 319-340.

Zajac, E., Golden, R., & Shortell, S. (1991). New organizational forms for enhancing innovation: The case of internal corporate ventures. Management Science, 37, 170-184.

The helpful suggestions of Frank Hoy and four anonymous reviewers of this journal are acknowledged with much appreciation. This manuscript is dedicated to the memory of Mary Judith Sena.

Shaker A. Zahra is Professor of Strategic Management, Developmental Management at Georgia State University.
COPYRIGHT 1993 Sage Publications, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1993 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Title Annotation:includes appendices
Author:Zahra, Shaker A.
Publication:Entrepreneurship: Theory and Practice
Date:Jun 22, 1993
Previous Article:Board of directors leadership and structure: control and performance implications.
Next Article:Venturing into foreign markets: the case of the small service firm.

Terms of use | Privacy policy | Copyright © 2020 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters