It’s really out there: A review of the critique of the discovery view of opportunities
February 20, 2013 Editor 0
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to review the recent critique of the discovery view of opportunities and by implication the current state of the so-called creation view of opportunities.
Design/methodology/approach – A systematic review of articles published from 2000-2010 which feature a critique of the discovery view of opportunities. The review uses an open coding approach to identify central themes in the critique. Four central themes are identified, and from within-theme patterns three distinct groups within the literature are identified.
Findings – The four themes suggest that the discovery view is incomplete, that social and relational interactions are more pervading and important than the discovery view suggests, that opportunities are created and that the role of individuality and subjectivity needs to be emphasized more. Three distinct groups within the literature are identified, each presenting different critiques of the discovery view, theoretical foci and implications for method and practice. Furthermore, the discussion suggests that the opportunity concept is a focal point for important debates in the entrepreneurship field, that the creation view is diverse and should not be referred to in the singular and that seeking reconciliation between the discovery and creation views is a problematic strategy. Finally, it is suggested that a continued dialog exploring differences both between the discovery and creation views as well as between the creation views is a fruitful strategy for the development of the field.
Originality/value – The article presents a review of both the critique of the discovery view and the so-called creation view, thereby supplementing and advancing from existing reviews of the opportunity concept in entrepreneurship. This furthers our understanding of the role of opportunities in entrepreneurial processes.
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