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Traditionally, the study of entrepreneurial behavior focuses on such factors as (i) the personality characteristics that distinguish the entrepreneur from non-entrepreneur and (ii) demographic characteristics such gender, age, familiar antecedents and education. With particular respect to investigating the development, acquisition, and dissemination of entrepreneurial skills and behaviors, the authors focus on the university environment, as a locus of research and innovation, where students are exposed to a wide variety of influences that are enhanced by a high degree of connectivity.

The underlying theme of this volume is to develop our understanding of the sociology of student entrepreneurial behavior and in doing so attempt to synthesize literature investigating individual talent with the literature on concurrent knowledge sourcing in the pursuit of entrepreneurial activities. Specifically, the authors investigate the degree to which access to diverse knowledge (in addition to such psychological characteristics and tolerance of ambiguity and risk taking) influences the nature and probability of entrepreneurial success. Moreover, they explore the role of social media and social networking in facilitating access to distributed and disparate information and knowledge.

Their research addresses such timely questions as:

Where do entrepreneurial opportunities come from? How can higher education best stimulate the creation of firms emanating from young and smart minds in colleges and universities? What is the value of MOOCs for frequent, early, and “thick” communication among the various specialties needed to accomplish entrepreneurial projects? How do we know whether social media affect students’ responses to new knowledge and new ideas?To what extent do educational practices affect racial and ethnic differences in student entrepreneurship? What is the role of the indigenous minority student entrepreneur in establishing high-technology firms?

The result is a multi-dimensional approach that sheds light on the dynamics of education, knowledge creation, social networking, innovation and new business development.

Cross-cultural knowledge management, an elusive yet consequential phenomenon, is becoming an increasingly essential factor in organizational practice and policy in the era of globalization. In order to overcome culturally shaped blind spots in conducting research in different settings, this volume highlights how the structuring of roles, interests, and power among different organizational elements, such as teams, departments, and management hierarchies (each comprised of members from different intellectual and professional backgrounds), generates various paradoxes and tensions that bring into play a set of dynamics that have an impact on learning processes.

In this context, such questions often arise: How is knowledge shared in the multicultural organization? What problems and issues emerge? How do different mentalities affect people’s responses to new knowledge and new ideas? How can knowledge-sharing processes be improved? Under which conditions do ideas generated by units or groups of different cultural traditions have a chance of being heard and implemented?

Such questions translate into an investigation of potential managerial dilemmas that occur when different but equally valid choices create tensions in decision making. The authors draw from experiences working with a wide variety of organizations, and insights from such fields as sociology and psychology, to shed new light on the dynamics of knowledge management in the multicultural enterprise. In so doing, they help to identify both obstacles to successful communication and opportunities to inspire creativity and foster collaboration. The authors note that in order to enable organizations to transfer knowledge effectively, mechanisms for dispute settlement, mediation of cultural conflict, and enforcing agreements need to be in place.

Family businesses—the predominant form of business organization around the world—can make numerous, critical contributions to the economy and family well-being in both financial and qualitative terms. But dysfunctional family businesses can be difficult to manage, painful experiences at best, and they can destroy family wealth and personal relationships. This book explores the dynamics of family business management, in the context of constantly changing market conditions and the role that knowledge management plays in strategic planning and adaptation. Integrating the literature from family business, entrepreneurship, industrial psychology, and knowledge management, and with illustrative examples from a variety of enterprises, the authors address such topics as: •How family businesses can compete in the new knowledge economy •How to manage a family business when knowledge is its main asset •How to transfer knowledge (and how to keep it alive) through family generations Within this framework, the authors argue that effective resource management—especially intangible resources—is central to enabling a family-run organization to maintain a sustainable competitive advantage over time. They note that families often develop systemic, intuitive, or tacit knowledge that transcends rational decision making and needs to be recognized and nurtured as a distinctive asset. The authors demonstrate that trans-generational value is achieved when the family firm innovates and adapts itself to changing external and internal conditions. This kind of entrepreneurial performance requires dynamic capabilities and processes designed to acquire, exchange, combine and even shed knowledge and practices; and, in turn, dynamic capabilities result from mechanisms of knowledge sharing, collective learning, experience accumulation, and transfer.
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