The Role of Impulsiveness in Entrepreneurial Opportunity Evaluation Decisions




Richardson, Sarah

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Identifying how entrepreneurs evaluate opportunities and make decisions, once personal and environmental factors are brought to bear, is a growing area of research. In this study, I use the Rule-Based Reasoning method to theorize how entrepreneurs develop cognitive frameworks and rules that govern and dictate their decision-making process. As these cognitive rules are implemented, each entrepreneur is making future-based judgments of the feasibility of each opportunity. Based on this knowledge of how entrepreneurs develop mental models that affect their decision-making process, I limited my subject area to analyze the likelihood of action for entrepreneurs when they are presented with three main effect attributes (number of opportunities, window of opportunity, and information asymmetry) at different levels, and the interaction between these attributes and impulsivity. This was achieved via a conjoint analysis experiment with 352 decisions made by entrepreneurship student participants. The overall goal was to determine what effect the personal factor of impulsivity has on the entrepreneurial opportunity evaluation process, and if there is a statistically significant relationship between likelihood of action, the main effects, and impulsivity.



Introduction and Background, Entrepreneurship Defined, Opportunity Defined, Brief Overview of Opportunity-Discovery Approach: (breaking down discovery, evaluation, and exploitation), Impulsiveness Defined, Impulsiveness vs. Irrationality, Decisions Environment, Rule-Based Reasoning Method, Experiment and Method, Method, Overview of Entrepreneurial Opportunity Evaluated in Experiment, Description, Functional Needs of the Market, Functional Characteristics of the Technology, Sample, Research Design and Instrument, Description of the opportunity, Conjoint Analysis Experiment Design, Variable and Measures, Independent Variables Manipulations, Dependent Variable, Control Variable, Post-Experiment Questionnaire, Results, Discussion and Conclusion, Discussion & Suggestions for Further Studies, Conclusion, Appendices, Bibliography