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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Increasing Faculty Engagement in Entrepreneurial Behavior to Advance Regional Economic Development: an Innovation Study
by Boxer, Allison C., Ed.D., University of Southern California, 2020, 155; 28088253
Abstract (Summary)

Higher education institutions (HEIs) are generally resistant to change and struggle to remain relevant amidst the changing social and economic context in the United States. As knowledge increasingly drives economic activity, society expects universities, as creators and distributors of knowledge, to play a larger role in economic development at the regional and national levels. Some universities struggle to take on an augmented position in economic development due to a resistance to change within the organization. Yet, those institutions that do take risks and embrace change have the opportunity to play an increasingly central role in the economic and social development of their regions, which means increased relevance and sustainability for the region as well as the institution. Because HEIs are generally more comfortable operating the way they have for many decades, it will take fostering a culture of taking risks for a university to challenge the status quo and embrace its role to spur economic development in a knowledge-based society.

This study used a case study approach to explore the innovations and changes that would need to occur within a land grant, research university to increase faculty engagement in entrepreneurial, risk-taking behavior. The research sought to answer the questions: What are the knowledge, motivation, and organizational influences dimensions that have enabled some faculty to engage in entrepreneurial risk-taking behavior? And, how can those influences be fostered to increase this behavior? The qualitative study gathered data via a faculty survey and interviews, which were coded and analyzed. Data indicated that faculty conceptually understand the benefits of entrepreneurial risk-taking endeavors but could use additional support to understand the process and skills to execute. While the majority of faculty reported that entrepreneurial behavior was worth their time, few actually engaged in such behavior due to institutional barriers. Overall, organizational changes to encourage and support entrepreneurial behavior would be required to increase overall incidence of such behavior.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Tambascia, Tracy Poon
Commitee: Robison, Mark, Plowman, Donde
School: University of Southern California
Department: Education(Higher and Post-Secondary Education)
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-A 82/2(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Education, Entrepreneurship, Educational administration, Higher education
Keywords: Entrepreneurial university, Innovation
Publication Number: 28088253
ISBN: 9798664738469
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