Indigenous theories of entrepreneurship

Indigenous (or domestic or native) entrepreneurship theories are theories that were created to explain entrepreneurial phenomena. This is the opposite of borrowed (or imported or foreign) theories, which involve using theories that were designed to explain or predict non-entrepreneurship phenomena in order to predict entrepreneurship phenomena. While theory borrowing can often be appropriate, we tend to celebrate indigenous theories most because they tend to be created by scholars specializing in entrepreneurship, but also because they do not come with any baggage!

According to Kenworthy and McMullan (2018), “Entrepreneurship ranks fifth with 3.7% of theory usage (18 of 485 instances). The domestic-to-foreign theory usage ratio is 1 to 26.” Assuming they are correct, then we should expect to find very few indigenous theories, though each one might be extremely valuable.

Kenworthy and McMullan (2018) have not yet published their list of 18 theories, but I’ve asked them for it. In the meantime, I’ve made this rough list of indigenous entrepreneurship theories based on my own opinion.

You may also be interested in other types of entrepreneurship theories: