Path dependent path breaking: tracing innovative entrepreneurial behavior through C-K method
Paper in proceedings, 2012
Breaking with the path-dependency associated with innovations and innovating firms is normally seen as something challenging but also giving rise to entrepreneurial opportunities. However, we have little understanding of how entrepreneurial behavior breaks new innovative paths. This paper explores path-dependencies and path breaking in technology ventures by their entrepreneurs, using a methodology for innovative design – the C-K method. The method among other things adds to our understanding of how a changed direction of a venture is based on deliberate and designed actions. Many of the studied ventures were found to change directions in unforeseen ways. Yet, when doing so, this path breaking was based upon generated knowledge rather than on “new discoveries”. These observations increase our understanding of how predictive and effectual entrepreneurial logics can be combined. The findings also indicate that technology entrepreneurs especially in early stages might be well suited to mindfully deviate from established paths.