Crowdsourcing digitisation in archives

In another instalment of our digital history series, I wanted to highlight that there is increasingly work being done involving crowdsourcing. Many of you may have read the media reports that during the lock down, a crowdsourcing project to digitise rainfall records has barrelled ahead as people enthusiastically engaged. The project is now complete. Does make you wonder what other archival resources may benefit from such an approach.

The National Archives UK has been exploring this recently as well and the potential for expanding this is really not something that was on my radar at all until recently. An interesting insight into what is happening is provided by a chapter by Alexandra Everleigh, ‘Crowding out the Archivist?’ in an edited volume on Crowdsourcing our Heritage. I am not aware that there are any organization or business-focused crowdsourcing projects underway, but may just be my ignorance. Do let us know if this is something that is being explored or ongoing in an archive near you!

SEJ Special Issue: Historical Approaches to Entrepreneurship Research

Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal has published a special issue devoted to historical approaches to entrepreneurship research.  The contributions highlight the value of a range of methods — socioeconomic history, cultural history, microhistory, comparative history, and historical case studies — in entrepreneurship research. The introduction discusses how these approaches advance theoretical views of the nature of entrepreneurial opportunities and action. The full, open-access special issue can be found here.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Context, Time, and Change: Historical Approaches to Entrepreneurship Research 
R. Daniel Wadhwani, David Kirsch, Friederike Welter, William B. Gartner, Geoffrey Jones

The Household as a Source of Labor for Entrepreneurs: Evidence from New York City During Industrialization
Martin Ruef

Reintroducing Public Actors in Entrepreneurial Dynamics: A Co-evolutionary Approach to Categorization
Benoit Demil

Historicizing Entrepreneurial Networks
Matthew Hollow

Different Expectations: A Comparative History of Structure, Experience and Strategic Alliances in the U.S. and U.K. Poultry Sectors, 1920-1990
Andrew C. Godley, Shane Hamilton

Innovation, Intermediation, and the Nature of Entrepreneurship: A Historical Perspective
Steven Toms, Nick Wilson, Mike Wright

Postdoc Position: Entrepreneurial Studies

The University of Southern California’s Greif Center for Entrepreneurial Studies seeks applicants for a one-year post-doctoral fellowship with the possibility of renewal for a second year. Scholars with interests in founder perspectives and decision-making encouraged to apply, as are those with more specialized interests in the ethics, sociology, or history of entrepreneurship. Successful candidates will be expected to be in residence during the fellowship and to participate actively in the Greif Center for Entrepreneurial Studies. During their term, fellows will actively collaborate with Greif Center faculty and contribute to the Center’s fellowship program in addition to conducting and publishing their own research. The postdoctoral researcher will work under the supervision of Professor Dan Wadhwani. Interested candidates are welcome to contact Professor Wadhwani at dwadhwani@marshall.usc.edu with questions.

For more information and to apply please click here.

History of the WWW and the ‘digital tsunami’

If you are interested in how our research practices are likely to shift as a result of the ‘digital tsunami’ that is facing archives, digital history is the place to go. But business and organizational historians have not really been part of these debates so far. We are starting a series of occasional posts about some of the resources that are out there on digital tools and debates.

For a bit of reading, a good place to start is Ian Milligan’s History in the age of abundance? How the web is transforming historical research (2019). We have a review in Business History by Adam Nix, and he has kindly agreed to make the code for 50 free offprints available – just click here. (FYI – when they are gone, they are gone.)

Here’s the opening to get you started:

“The late twentieth century and early millennium are fast becoming focal periods for historians; as Milligan notes, we are now further from the 1990s than we were from the 1960s when substantive historical work began on that pivotal decade. Given the tendency towards comparatively recent historical contexts, business historians are likely to be among the first to start exploring these periods. However, to do so, they will need to engage with a new and challenging set of sources: sources that were created digitally; sources like those deriving from the World Wide Web. Ultimately, it is this engagement that Milligan’s latest book seeks to encourage and enable, and in doing so, he provides readers with a comprehensive and well-articulated view into the web as a focus for historical research. …”

Ian Milligan has posted about the review here in case you are interested.

OHN returns & CfP “Entrepreneurship and Transformations”

Hello everyone and apologies for the long pause between posts, which was partly due to illness, but also, as you can imagine, due to the extraordinary times we find ourselves in. Many of us had to prepare online teaching at short notice, and many of the events we blog about have been cancelled due to the ongoing pandemic. Going forward, we will only run one blog per week on Fridays, as there simply not as many events and updates as there would usually be.

But today we have some good news, as one of our great editors, Christina Lubinski, is looking for submissions for an exciting new special issue in Business History on historical entrepreneurship.

Stay safe & healthy

Stephanie

Business History Special Issue

Entrepreneurship and Transformations

Special Issue Editor(s)

Deadline: 30 September 2020

Entrepreneurship and Transformations

Research on entrepreneurship has flourished in recent years, and the public interest in it has arguably never been greater. Few would disagree that entrepreneurship is one of the primary drivers of industry dynamics, economic and societal change, and innovation. However, the rapidly growing field of entrepreneurship studies has not displayed great strength in capturing dynamics and evolutions over time, partly due to a lack of historical empirical work of the sort that Schumpeter (1939) has already called for several decades ago. This special issue sets out to bring together an interdisciplinary group of scholars analyzing the links between entrepreneurship and (societal and market) transformations.

The Special Issue “Entrepreneurship and Transformations” takes its starting point in the critique that the field of entrepreneurship studies suffers from a fixation on the micro-processes governing the interaction of individuals and opportunities (Shane 2003), while largely ignoring the macro-dynamics of which entrepreneurship is part. It builds on the growing interdisciplinary dialogue between history and entrepreneurship studies (Wadhwani and Jones 2014, Perchard, MacKenzie et al. 2017, Wadhwani, Kirsch et al. 2020 pre-published online) that has triggered much needed methodological and theoretical reflections on historical entrepreneurship research.

The editors of this SI give an overview of this field of study in their annotated bibliography and encourage authors to engage with (a sub-set of) this literature. In particular, they welcome contributions that build on these insights to empirically explore the links between entrepreneurship and (societal and market) transformations over time. We see a research opportunity for scholars who use historical methods and sources to explore

  1. opportunity recognition and opportunity exploitation as a long-term process. Artur Cole (1959), for example, introduced the idea of an “entrepreneurial stream”—a metaphor highlighting that entrepreneurial opportunities often unfold over long period of time, with one opportunity building on previous ones. These long-term developments easily become hidden if we focus too closely on one individual or one company; however, the question how new opportunities emerge from existing ones, and how (experiential and codified) knowledge travels between individuals and institutions is of great importance for understanding the entrepreneurial process in and between companies (Galambos and Amatori 2016).
  2. the interactions between entrepreneurship and the cultural and socioeconomic environment they are embedded in (Welter and Gartner 2016, Baker and Welter 2018). So far, scholarly approaches to contextualizing entrepreneurship have varied widely. One set of work, drawing on institutional theory and following Baumol (1990), have interpreted contexts as a source of constraints and incentives on entrepreneurial behavior. A second approach, drawing on social movement and social group research, have approached contextualization as a matter of “embedding” entrepreneurial processes within social groups, movements, and networks (Hiatt, Sine et al. 2009). A third approach, drawing on a social constructivist view of contexts, examines how entrepreneurial actors shape and even create the contexts for their actions (Jones and Pitelis 2015). Historical research, particularly work that takes a comparative or international perspective, has long emphasized the role of context in shaping the very definition of entrepreneurship and entrepreneurial processes. But how exactly does historical work lead us to reconsider and rethink the conceptualization of context? How can context be operationalized and studied using a historical lens? We believe that non-Western contexts and “deep histories”, in particular, can help us question and revise some of the taken-for-granted assumptions around entrepreneurship and context.
  3. Finally, we specifically encourage interdisciplinary collaborations between historians and scholars from other disciplines that significantly advance our understanding of entrepreneurship and market transformations and develop approaches that are useful to scholars exploring entrepreneurship historically. 

References

  • Baker, T. and F. Welter (2018). “Contextual Entrepreneurship: An Interdisciplinary Perspective.” Foundations and Trends®in Entrepreneurship 14(4): 357-426.
  • Baumol, W. J. (1990). “Entrepreneurship: Productive, Unproductive, and Destructive.” Journal of Political Economy 98(5): 893-921.
  • Cole, A. (1959). Business Enterprise in its Social Setting. Cambridge, Harvard University Press.
  • Galambos, L. and F. Amatori (2016). “The Entrepreneurial Multiplier.” Enterprise & Society 17(4): 763-808.
  • Hiatt, S. R., W. D. Sine and P. S. Tolbert (2009). “From Pabst to Pepsi: The Deinstitutionalization of Social Practices and the Creation of Entrepreneurial Opportunities.” Administrative Science Quarterly 54(4): 635-667.
  • Jones, G. and C. Pitelis (2015). “Entrepreneurial Imagination and a Demand and Supply-Side Perspective on MNE and Cross-Border Organisation.” Journal of International Management 21(4): 309-321.
  • Perchard, A., N. G. MacKenzie, S. Decker and G. Favero (2017). “Clio in the Business School: Historical Approaches in Strategy, International Business and Entrepreneurship.” Business History: 1-24.
  • Schumpeter, J. A. (1939). Business Cycles: A Theoretical, Historical and Statistical Analysis of the Capitalist Process, Vol. I. New York and London, McGraw-Hill.
  • Shane, S. (2003). A General Theory of Entrepreneurship:The Individual–Opportunity Nexus. Cheltenham, Edward Elgar.
  • Wadhwani, D. R., D. Kirsch, F. Welter, W. B. Gartner and G. Jones (2020 pre-published online). “Context, Time, and Change: Historical Approaches to Entrepreneurship Research.” Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal.
  • Wadhwani, R. D. and G. Jones (2014). Schumpeter’s Plea: Historical Reasoning in Entrepreneurship Theory and Research. Organizations in Time: History, Theory and Methods. M. Bucheli and R. D. Wadhwani. Oxford, Oxford University Press: 192-216.
  • Welter, F. and W. B. Gartner, Eds. (2016). A Research Agenda for Entrepreneurship and Context. Cheltenham, UK, Edward Elgar Publishing.

 

Submission instructions

We welcome contributions to the outlined research agenda that are based on original research and innovative analysis. We particularly encourage contributions by interdisciplinary teams of authors and those that combine source-based historical analysis with insights, concepts or data from other disciplines.

Papers should not exceed 8,000 words, inclusive of tables and footnotes, and use US spelling. By submitting to the SI, authors confirm that their contributions are not under consideration elsewhere. All proposals should be submitted via ScholarOne, indicating that they are contributions to this Special Issue “Entrepreneurship and Transformations”. All articles will go through a peer-review process. It is the responsibility of the author(s) to ensure that the manuscript fully complies with the publishing guidelines of Business History.

Instructions for authors

Submit an article

For questions about this Special Issue, please contact Christina Lubinski, cl.mpp@cbs.dk

ACCOUNTING HISTORY WORKSHOP

The workshop is being held by the Accounting History Special Interest Group (AH SIG) at Southampton University on Monday, 30 March 2020 10:30–17:00, before the main BAFA Annual Conference.

Accounting history research involves investigating the development and role of accounting in the past. The stories of history are gleaned from several sources, including documents in archives, libraries, private collections, and oral recollections. They are illuminated by knowledge of context, including, social, economic, commercial, legal, educational, financial, and religious factors identified in the literature. And they are interpreted and explained using those factors, often in combination with a selection of theories.

The aim of this workshop is to demonstrate the relevance of accounting history; to encourage participation in this genre of research; to describe various methods for carrying out accounting history research; to focus on how to publish historical research; and to provide an opportunity to establish networks and identify mentors and co-authors. Attendees will also have the opportunity to receive feedback on their research ideas and projects.

Workshop Programme

The one-day workshop will begin with an overview of accounting history methods and practice and an introduction to the Accounting History Special Interest group, followed by sessions on:

·       Carrying out accounting history research.

·       How to find primary sources.

·       How to find secondary sources.

·       Writing-up historical research: what should you include?

·       How to publish accounting history in leading journals.

·       Feedback on your ideas and projects (small group session)

Target Audience

The workshop is suitable for anyone considering beginning historical accounting research and anyone currently working in this area.

Registration

Full Ticket: £55
Reduced Rate for PhD Students Only: £25

The fee includes lunch. 

Buying a workshop ticket registers you for this event. Tickets to BAFA conferences are only available to members. To purchase a ticket, log in to your account on the BAFA Membership Portal (https://members.bafa.ac.uk/) and click the ‘Purchase Tickets’ button. Select the appropriate ticket for the event you want to attend, and follow instructions.

If you are not already a member of BAFA, please sign up for membership at https://members.bafa.ac.uk/signup. Further information on how to register for BAFA events can be found here: http://www.bafa.ac.uk/assets/uploads/conference-workshop-registration.pdf.

BAFA Annual Membership rates: Academic Staff: £30 
Unsalaried PhD/MPhil Student or Retired Academic: £15

Look forward to seeing you there!

Jobs: Research Associate in Business History at University of Glasgow

The Adam Smith Business School is looking for a Research Associate to make a leading contribution to the project: The Making of a Lopsided Union: Economic Integration in the European Economic Community, 1957-1992 (EURECON) led by Professor Emmanuel Mourlon-Druol (See http://e-mourlon-druol.com/eurecon/ and Explanatory Document for more details). Specifically, the job requires expert knowledge in the area of post-war international/European economic and business history. Contribute to the formulation and submission of research publications and research proposals and help manage and direct complex and challenging project(s) as opportunities allow.

This post is full time with funding up to 18 months in the first instance.

For more information and to apply online: Click here

New database of company archives

The University of Florida’s History Department program in the History of Capitalism has created a curated and searchable database of corporate archives and is proud to announce that this new digital resource is now available. The name and virtual location of the database are Inquire Capitalism at https://inquirecapitalism.omeka.net/

https://inquirecapitalism.omeka.net/

Inquire Capitalism seeks to both unify information about corporate archives and also to connect scholars, archivists, and businesses by making information about company archives more discoverable. In addition, the researchers collecting the information about company archives have focused on finding out what is the digital presence of companies’ history, whether through digital archives or by having heritage sites and chronologies as part of the company’s website. The database contains information mostly about the United States, but the team at the University of Florida plans to continue expanding the list by including information from other parts of the world. Inquire Capitalism has counted with the partnership of the German Historical Institute in Washington D.C. and the Hagley Museum and Library to start the project and wishes to create new partners to make this list global and even more useful. Comments and new contributions are most appreciated and welcomed. Please contact the team by emailing to inquirecapitalism@history.ufl.edu.


I would be thrilled to know what you think of the project. I am also writing to find out if you would be willing to hear more about how we created it and how we intend to make it permanent. It would be great if we can find a way to maybe integrate it as part of one of your working projects, or possibly discuss a way to (once again) pursue research grants opportunities so that this resource can become even more useful and internationally generated and powered.

My best, Paula
Paula A. de la Cruz-Fernández, Ph.D.
Historiadora, Administradora de Patrimonio || Historian, Heritage Manager

https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3535-7195
Editora || Editor The Exchange, the BHC blog
Redes sociales || Contact@cruzmosu or LinkedIn

New historical article in JMS

The January issue of JMS features a really interesting piece by Andrew Smith and Miriam Kaminishi about the historical origins of the concept of the ‘Confucian entrepreneur’. As anyone who has taught on the basis of international business textbooks can attest, the way in which Confucianism in drawn upon to explain phenomena in China’s political economy is often quite odd and uncomfortable. Below is the reference and abstract. Happy reading!

Confucian Entrepreneurship: Towards a Genealogy of a Conceptual Tool

Andrew Smith

Miriam Kaminishi

First published: 16 February 2019 

https://doi.org/10.1111/joms.12439

Abstract

The concept of the ‘Confucian Entrepreneur’ is now used by many scholars to understand entrepreneurship in China and other East Asian countries. This paper traces the development of this concept from its roots in the writings of nineteenth‐century Western authors to its use in modern management journals. We show that while this conceptual tool has been adapted over time, the claims associated with it have remained largely similar. Use of the term Confucian entrepreneur implies belief that Confucian ideas induce Chinese entrepreneurs to behave differently than their Western counterparts, a claim for which the empirical foundations are weak. We do not go so far as to say that those who research Chinese entrepreneurship should discard the concept of the Confucian entrepreneur simply because of its historical origins in colonialism. However, we do call on researchers to reflect on the historical origins of their conceptual tools. By historicising our theories of entrepreneurship, this paper should encourage greater scholarly reflexivity and thus the development of entrepreneurship and management theory with greater predictive power.