Working Papers

The Working Papers of the Institut für Mittelstandsforschung (IfM) Bonn offer a way to pre-publish manuscripts before scientific publication. The series is designed to open up ongoing research to a broad audience for discussion.

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Working Papers

‘It Takes Three to Tango’: Brain, Cognition and Entrepreneurial Enhancement

In the global clash for unveiling the ‘innermost secrets’ of the brain, the field of neuroscience is the most fitting contender. Neuroscience is not quite ready to win the war for now, but it is assuredly equipped to win some battles. Notwithstanding that entrepreneurship is fundamentally a braindriven phenomenon, entrepreneurship research based on neuroscience’s tools cannot be counted on the fingers of more than one hand. Grounded on a prior literature review that investigates the state of neuroscience’s use in entrepreneurship research, this position paper reflects on the future implications that the utilization of neuroscience brings to entrepreneurship research and cognition. To articulate this exercise, I present the so-called five ‘winds of disruption’ to signal where to go next in the study of entrepreneurship from a brain-driven perspective. Next I spell out four ways to maximize neuroscience’s inputs into entrepreneurship research. Furthermore, I synthesize the value of three neuroscience-based tools to rear and boost ‘entrepreneurial enhancement’, the ultimate challenge in the orbit of entrepreneurship research.   

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Working Papers

Business takeovers and firm growth: Empirical evidence from a German panel

The present article links business takeovers to the literature on serial autocorrelation of growth rates. The aim of the study is to identify the effects of successions on the performance of small German firms by analysing the growth pathways over a period of eight years after business takeover. Using panel data from 1,872 firms, the present article shows that for the first two years after a business takeover, small firms are subject to negative serial correlation of growth rates regarding employment. The analysis underlines the importance of longitudinal data to provide evidence on changes in the behaviour of a firm following a business takeover.

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Working Papers

Individual and Structural Influences on the Entrepreneurial Activities of Academics

In this paper we study how and to what extend (i) individual working conditions (e.g. peers, working atmosphere, work contract incentives, wage satisfaction), (ii) institutions (e.g. technology transfer offices, patent exploitation agencies, chair in entrepreneurship or awards for academic entrepreneurship) and (iii) network relationships simultaneously affect the likelihood of engaging in entrepreneurial activities (nascent entrepreneurship) in academia.

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Working Papers

Fine Artists' Entrepreneurial Business Environment

This paper aims to illustrate the working and business environment of professional fine artists and to identify the factors to successfully make a living in the arts as both market challenges and success factors have not yet been clearly identified in literature.

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Working Papers

Digitalization in the German radio specialized trade - Recommendations to the opportunities of Change Management on the basis of a current empirical research

The current Working Paper of the IfM Bonn recommends courses of action to solve the problem of a new
positioning of the German radio specialist suppliers.

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Working Papers

Inventions and their Commercial Exploitation in Academic Institutions: Analysing Determinants Among Academics

Institutions of higher education are considered as an important source of innovation. Consequently, big efforts are made to facilitate technology transfer from academia into the market. However, technology transfer at German universities does not seem to live up to its full potential.

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Working Papers

Determinants of hidden champions - Evidence from Germany

Our explorative study analyses the factors that affect the likelihood of German companies to be a hidden champion.

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Working Papers

Gender Diversity in Top-Management Positions in Large Family and Nonfamily Businesses

(Why) does the sex ratio in top-management positions in large family and nonfamily businesses differ? Using a unique data set and estimating (fractional) logit regressions we show that the female share in top-management positions in family businesses exceeds the one in nonfamily businesses.

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Working Papers

Crucial Skills for the Entrepreneurial Success of Fine Artists

This article aims to define crucial skills for the entrepreneurial success of working fine artists as these skills have not yet been clearly identified for this professional group.

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Working Papers

Family-related employment interruptions and self-employment of women: Does policy matter?

This paper analyzes how statutory entitlements to maternity or parental leave affect female entry into self-employment after childbirth. For our estimations we use comprehensive panel data for German adults born between 1944 and 1989.

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Working Papers

The Entrepreneurial Value of Arts Incubators: Why Fine Artists Should Make Use of Professional Arts Incubators

The study’s aim is to show whether and to what extent services of entrepreneurial value will be provided by arts incubators to nurture fine artists to meet market requirements to make a living in the arts.

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Working Papers

Creative Forces for Entrepreneurship: The Role of Institutional Change Agents

The paper reviews the current discussion on institutional change and institutional entrepreneurship. Specifically, it focuses on institutional change agents, by which we mean individuals whose actions can be shown to have contributed to formal or informal institutional change, to the benefit of the wider economy or society as well as to themselves. It aims to explore their antecedents and behaviours, and the contingent factors contributing to institutional change, both intentionally and unintentionally.

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Working Papers

Sustainable Management and Performance in SMEs: A French Case Study

Nowadays, sustainable management seems more likely to be a guarantee of competitiveness for companies, regardless of their size. Besides offering those strategic opportunities, sustainable management practices also play a significant role in gaining acceptance and legitimacy in the marketplace. Moreover, SMEs are continually researching ways to improve their performance. 

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Working Papers

Works Councils in Family Businesses in Germany – why are there so few?

Works councils are an inherent part of the German economic and social system. An analysis of the prevalence of works councils in Germany reveals that they are not uniformly distributed across all types of businesses. Works councils occur less frequently in owner-managed businesses – regardless of their size – than in companies run by employed managers.

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Working Papers

The Economic Contribution of Start-Up Firms in Germany

This paper utilizes German tax data to present evidence about the direct and indirect effcts of new firm formation. Cohort analysis is applied to investigate survival, sales, inputs, and value added of start-up firms. Most drop-outs occur in the early years. 

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Working Papers

The gendering of entrepreneurship context

The paper builds on the understanding of context as suggested by Welter (2011) who introduced different dimensions of context along a continuum of where entrepreneurship takes place and when this happens. Where context has been studied in relation to gender and women, the focus has been on the influence of social contexts such as networks, family and household embeddedness of women entrepreneurs or the institutional environment for women’s entrepreneurship.

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