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ENTREPRENEURIAL DISCOVERY AND EXPLOITATION PROCESSES: SEQUENCE OR SYMBIOSIS? (SUMMARY)
Scott R. Gordon
Entrepreneurship scholars are showing more interest in process (van de Ven & Engleman, 2004), but, there remains little consensus on conceptualization, operationalisation, analytical approach, or results. Some agree the twin concepts of entrepreneurial discovery and exploitation (Shane & Venkataraman, 2000) are useful sub-processes which, together, explain venture emergence (Davidsson, 2008). This perspective implicitly assumes sequential sub-processes where discovery preceedes exploitation (Eckhardt & Shane, 2010). However, other literature questions the strictness of this ordering (Bhave, 1994; Sarasvathy, 2001); or suggests symbiosis, where discovery and exploitation might overlap (Davidsson, 2008). Despite the inherent importance, there is a dearth of research accounting for temporal structure in new venture emergence. Resultantly, this order hypothesis remains largely untested. Accordingly this paper makes two contributions: first, it tests the temporality of discovery and exploitation; second, it introduces a new method for such process analysis.