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The Entrepreneurial Quest for Emancipation: Trade-Offs, Practices, and Outcomes in an Indigenous Context

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Abstract

This paper builds on theoretical developments that view entrepreneurship as emancipation, i.e., entrepreneurial activities as generators of change and pursuit of freedom from perceived constraints. Using a representative data set of 1095 SMEs owned by Indigenous entrepreneurs in Canada, the authors investigate how pursuit of this freedom affects (i) the way entrepreneurs enact several aspects of their ventures and (ii) the performance outcomes achieved. Findings reveal how the initial motivations of entrepreneurs (seeking change for the social collective of which they are a part versus seeking autonomy for themselves) lead to distinct business practices, which in turn impact differentially entrepreneurial outcomes.

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Notes

  1. We are deeply grateful to the CCAB for providing access to the dataset.

  2. For a more detailed information about the ABS methodology, please refer to Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business (2010).

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Acknowledgements

The authors are grateful to the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business for providing access to the data set used in this study. The authors also acknowledge financial support from the Strategic Research Grant, MacEwan University. An early version of this article was presented at the Babson College Entrepreneurship Research Conference and received the G. Dale Meyer Best Paper Award for the Most Relevant Research in Social Entrepreneurship. Comments and suggestions from conference participants are gratefully acknowledged. We also appreciate the constructive comments received from Professor Roloff and three anonymous reviewers who helped improve this manuscript.

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Correspondence to Albena Pergelova.

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Pergelova, A., Angulo-Ruiz, F. & Dana, LP. The Entrepreneurial Quest for Emancipation: Trade-Offs, Practices, and Outcomes in an Indigenous Context. J Bus Ethics 180, 481–503 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-021-04894-1

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