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Exploring the development of entrepreneurial identity in a learning-by-doing entrepreneurial project environment

Shin-Horng Chen (Department of Marketing and Logistics Management, Southern Taiwan University of Science and Technology, Tainan, Taiwan)
Wei-Tsong Wang (Department of Industrial and Information Management, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan)
Chih-Tsen Lu (Institute of Information Management, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan)

Education + Training

ISSN: 0040-0912

Article publication date: 22 March 2021

Issue publication date: 1 June 2021




Understanding the construction of individual entrepreneurial identity for entrepreneurship education is an important but understudied issue. Prior studies indicate that entrepreneurship learning is associated with not only learning critical entrepreneurial skills and knowledge but also facilitating the construction of a personal entrepreneurial identity. However, educators are constantly challenged by the task of facilitating such an identity within students via learning-by-doing processes in the context of entrepreneurial teams. Additionally, while effective conflict management is essential to productive entrepreneurial learning in entrepreneurial teams, studies that investigate the relationships between interpersonal conflicts of entrepreneurial teams and the students' entrepreneurial identity are absent.


The approach of an in-depth case study was adopted to achieve our research purpose.


A conceptual model that describes the construction of the entrepreneurial identity of students of entrepreneurial teams in a learning-by-doing environment from the perspectives of conflicts and task characteristics are developed.

Research limitations/implications

The research findings highlight the preliminary relationships between task characteristics (i.e. task interdependence, task uncertainty, resource competition and tension regarding responsibility allocation) and interpersonal conflicts of entrepreneurial teams, and their impacts on the entrepreneurial identity of team members.


This study is among the first group of studies that especially explores the relationships among task characteristics of entrepreneurship projects, interpersonal conflicts and the development of students' entrepreneurial identity.



The authors thank the entrepreneurial teams studied for providing valuable data. The authors also thank the Editor and anonymous reviewers for their valuable feedback on this paper. This study was funded by the Ministry of Science and Technology, Taiwan [grant number: MOST 105-2511-S-006-001-MY2].


Chen, S.-H., Wang, W.-T. and Lu, C.-T. (2021), "Exploring the development of entrepreneurial identity in a learning-by-doing entrepreneurial project environment", Education + Training, Vol. 63 No. 5, pp. 679-700.



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