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Entrepreneurship research: A missing link in our understanding of the knowledge economy

Hans Landström (Institute of Economic Research, Lund University School of Economics and Management, Lund, Sweden)

Journal of Intellectual Capital

ISSN: 1469-1930

Article publication date: 18 April 2008




A great deal of policy thinking in the last ten to 15 years has been driven by the insights gained from the so‐called “new growth theory”. The theory emphasizes that investments in knowledge and human capital generate economic growth through spillover of knowledge, and the policy implication is that investments in knowledge and human capital are the best way to stimulate growth. However, there is a couple of missing links in the “spillover argument” in that the theory seems to disregard the role of the entrepreneur. The paper aims to answer the question: Why haven't entrepreneurship researchers become a strong voice regarding the understanding of the development of the knowledge economy?


The author argues that a dynamic and innovative research field is characterized by a balance between the pursuit of new issues and knowledge in research, for example, by being sensitive for changes in society, and the development of existing knowledge, by integrating and validating the knowledge base already existing within the field.


The paper shows that one important reason for the lack of visibility of entrepreneurship research can be found in an internal scientific development of the research field – entrepreneurship research has become more and more theory‐driven and shows less sensitivity and openness for changes in society.


The article gives a critical reflection on the development of entrepreneurship as a research field. In this sense the article provides an increased understanding of the knowledge that is within the field, and gives also suggestions for the future development of the research field.



Landström, H. (2008), "Entrepreneurship research: A missing link in our understanding of the knowledge economy", Journal of Intellectual Capital, Vol. 9 No. 2, pp. 301-322.



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Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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