, Volume 115, Issue 2, pp 767–783 | Cite as

In consideration of entrepreneurship theory

  • Thomas P. Kenworthy
  • W. Edward McMullan


This study analyzes more than three decades of theory testing published in leading entrepreneurship journals. It uncovers the amount of theory testing; the extent to which theories are tested multiple times; and, the disciplinary origins of the theories that are tested. The analysis reveals that empirical researchers have increasingly responded to demands for more theory-driven knowledge over time through domestic theory creation and wholesale adoption of theories from other fields. It is observed that the most tested theories are borrowed from other scientific fields. The value of agency theory, the most popular one, is assessed via a foreign theory screening model. The result suggests that researchers cannot be too cautious when considering foreign theory for domestic knowledge development. Ultimately, researchers are strongly encouraged to consider testing the many domestic theories that have been specifically designed to answer the pressing, practical problems of the entrepreneurship discipline.


Entrepreneurship Theory testing Empirical Borrow Import Foreign 


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Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Windsor Odette School of BusinessWindsorCanada
  2. 2.Haskayne School of Business, The University of CalgaryCalgaryCanada

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