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Exploitative learning and entrepreneurial opportunity recognition of a family business in Hong Kong during and after the Second World War

Cherry Wun Mei Cheung (School of Business, London South Bank University, London, UK)

Journal of Entrepreneurship in Emerging Economies

ISSN: 2053-4604

Article publication date: 5 September 2016

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to examine the role of exploitative learning in entrepreneurial opportunity recognition at the time of war and peace.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper utilises some unique longitudinal oral history narratives collected from informants from a family business.

Findings

At the time of war and conflict, risk and physical immobility restricted exploitation within a narrowly confined geographical and knowledge contexts.

Research limitations/implications

The author’s case illustrates that success under such condition is largely determined by whether one can efficiently exploit one’s existing capabilities under contextual and circumstantial constraints and to reconfigure one’s capabilities utilising local knowledge and resources. When peace returns, the findings indicate that whilst there is no obvious external barrier for radical exploration, exploitation success during war and conflict may result in competency trap, undermining an organisation’s transformation after war and conflict.

Originality/value

This is the first paper examining exploration and exploitation learning at the time of war and conflict.

Keywords

Citation

Cheung, C.W.M. (2016), "Exploitative learning and entrepreneurial opportunity recognition of a family business in Hong Kong during and after the Second World War", Journal of Entrepreneurship in Emerging Economies, Vol. 8 No. 3, pp. 321-334. https://doi.org/10.1108/JEEE-06-2015-0035

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2016, Emerald Group Publishing Limited