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Inspirational tales: propagating the entrepreneurial narrative amongst children.

Smith, Robert


Robert Smith


William D. Bygrave

Candida G. Brush

Per Davidsson

James Fiet

Patricia G. Greene

Richard T. Harrison

Miri Lerner

G. Dale Meyer

Jeffrey Sohl

Andrew Zacharakis


Many entrepreneurial narratives act as inspirational tales, propagating valued stories at an ideological and mythological level. By participating in them we expose others to the inspirational power of the narrative and encourage the process of emulation. Potential outcomes include the perpetuation and regeneration of core ideological elements. Exposure to narrative is a process of social construction and re-construction that begins in childhood. Yet, entrepreneurship is essentially an adult paradigm. Consequentially, children may be channeled into individual occupations whereby few emerge as entrepreneurs. Unless one is exposed to the power of the entrepreneurial narrative, as a result of familial fables, or by being raised in an entrepreneurial family then by the time one makes a choice to pursue an entrepreneurial career path - life styles and alternative career paths are already established. The entrepreneurial narrative thus eludes the children. This is obviously detrimental to both society and the individual. This paper describes action-based research to address the problem.


SMITH, R. 2002. Inspirational tales: propagating the entrepreneurial narrative amongst children. In Bygrave, W.D., Brush, C.G., Davidsson, P., Fiet, J., Greene, P.G., Harrison, R.T., Lerner, M., Meyer, G.D., Sohl, J. and Zacharakis, A. (eds.) Proceedings of the 22nd Babson College entrepreneurship research conference (BCERC 2002), June 2002, Boulder, USA. Babson Park: Babson College [online]. Available from:

Conference Name 22nd Babson College entrepreneurship research conference (BCERC 2002)
Conference Location Boulder, USA
Start Date Jun 1, 2002
End Date Jun 30, 2002
Acceptance Date Dec 31, 2002
Online Publication Date Dec 31, 2002
Publication Date Dec 31, 2002
Deposit Date Sep 9, 2009
Publicly Available Date Sep 9, 2009
Publisher Babson College
ISBN 0910897239
Keywords Entrepreneurship; Narrative
Public URL
Publisher URL


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