The Place of Austrian Economics in Contemporary Entrepreneurship Research

That’s the title of a new working paper by Per Bylund and me. It’s forthcoming in a special issue of the Review of Austrian Economics devoted to the contributions of Israel Kirzner.

The Place of Austrian Economics in Contemporary Entrepreneurship Research

Peter G. Klein and Per L. Bylund
December 5, 2013

Abstract: We review the place of Austrian economics in contemporary entrepreneurship and management research, focusing on the contributions of Israel Kirzner. We show that Kirzner’s central concept of entrepreneurial discovery has been vastly influential in theoretical and applied work on entrepreneurship, even though Kirzner’s larger research program has not been well understood. We also describe and assess a number of methodological, ontological, and cognitive critiques of the opportunity-discovery approach and review the most important alternatives, including the judgment-based view associated with Knight (1921) and more recent contributors. We conclude that the entrepreneurship and management literatures provide a useful example of how Austrian economics — Kirznerian economics in particular — can play an important role in shaping mainstream discussions, debates, and research programs in the social sciences.

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