Dispersed entrepreneurship within multinational corporations: A community perspective

Lee, Soo Hee; Williams, Christopher
December 2007
Journal of World Business;Dec2007, Vol. 42 Issue 4, p505
Academic Journal
Abstract: The paper develops a new theoretical perspective on the phenomenon of dispersed entrepreneurship in large multinational corporations (MNCs). We argue that the creation and sharing of knowledge in entrepreneurial initiatives involving MNCs is underpinned by a behavioural theory of entrepreneurial communities and that these communities drive the evolution of the MNC organization. While we do not refute related theories of the organization as a social community or communities of practice providing a basis for learning and innovation, we suggest that a different kind of community facilitates dispersed entrepreneurial behaviours within the MNC. This community links participants by a shared desire to create new knowledge for international competition. To succeed in discovering, evaluating and exploiting new opportunities, managers need to allow and nurture situations of high-boundary porosity. The main characteristics, antecedents and consequences of these communities are identified and presented as a conceptual model.


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