Journal of International Business Studies

, Volume 40, Issue 5, pp 762–778 | Cite as

Institutional differences and the development of entrepreneurial ventures: A comparison of the venture capital industries in Latin America and Asia

  • Garry D Bruton
  • David AhlstromEmail author
  • Tomas Puky


This paper examines how differences in distinct institutional clusters of countries impact on the vital entrepreneurial activity of venture capital, and how individuals, organizations, and their collective action in turn shape those institutions. The focus on venture capital offers researchers the opportunity to view an industry that comes from a common root, with strong and consistent traditions, in which to examine how the differing institutional settings impact on behaviors in different markets, and how the institutions themselves may change in these settings. We also focus on emerging economies, since such economies offer a natural laboratory to study the impact of institutional change. Specifically, this paper employs an institutional theory perspective to examine venture capital in two regions of the world that form institutional clusters of countries – Latin America and Asia. It is found that the venture capital industry exhibits a strong consistency across many dimensions; yet institutions in these two distinct settings result in significant differences in industry practice. Therefore this research is able to contribute to both empirical and theoretical understanding of emerging economies, institutions in those environments, and venture capital.


institutional theory institutional change venture capital emerging economies Asia Latin America 



This paper was previously presented to the Society for Entrepreneurial Scholars. Thanks are expressed to Michael Lubatkin, Tom Lee, and David Deeds for earlier comments on the manuscript, and to Marc Ahlstrom of Burlington County College for his research assistance.


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Copyright information

© Academy of International Business 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.M J Neeley School of Business, Texas Christian UniversityFort WorthUSA
  2. 2.Department of The Chinese University of Hong KongShatinHong Kong
  3. 3.VA Tech Hydro Corporation, University Research ParkCharlotteUSA

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