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Title:A Knowledge-Based View of the Venture Creation Process: How Technology Entrepreneurs Mix Knowledge to Create Radical Innovation
Author(s):Marvel, Matthew R.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Ory, John C.
Department / Program:Education
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Business Administration, Management
Abstract:Survey-based research was used to investigate the knowledge mix of technology entrepreneurs (n=145) within the venture creation process and the innovativeness of their product or service. Technology entrepreneurs recalled their prior knowledge at the time their opportunity was first recognized and the gained knowledge between opportunity recognition and venture formation using Shane's (2000) knowledge framework. The study uses constructivist learning theory to demonstrate how knowledge is constructed within the venture creation process and links to innovation outcomes using a scale developed from the radical innovation literature (e.g., Hage, 1980; Leifer, McDermott, O'Connor, Peters, Rice & Veryzer, 2000). Constructivist learning emphasizes the building that occurs in peoples' minds as they construct meaning (Merriam & Caffarella, 1999) and used to understand the development of an opportunity. The results of the study support the view of venture creation as a constructive knowledge-based learning process. Results showed both prior knowledge at opportunity recognition and gained knowledge forward to venture formation are vital to explaining the radicalness of succeeding innovation outcomes. These findings support previous research that theorized the importance of individual differences in knowledge (Ronstadt, 1988; Shane, 2000) and demonstrated how differences in these knowledge mechanisms result in differences in innovation outcomes. Opportunities with radical innovation outcomes were positively associated with prior technology knowledge at opportunity recognition while prior knowledge of ways to serve markets was negatively associated with innovation radicalness. This finding was somewhat counterintuitive---the less one knows about ways to serve a particular market at opportunity recognition, the better the chance of using prior technology knowledge to create breakthrough innovations within it. Once an opportunity had been recognized, gained knowledge was needed in larger amounts for radical innovation more so than for incremental innovation. Therefore, persons who embrace and practice learning may be better prepared to develop and exploit an opportunity with more radical outcomes. These results suggest that the sequence as well as the presence of knowledge play an essential role in explaining the creation of breakthrough innovation.
Issue Date:2006
Description:136 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2006.
Other Identifier(s):(MiAaPQ)AAI3223668
Date Available in IDEALS:2015-09-25
Date Deposited:2006

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