Abstract

Overall, scholars agree that entrepreneurs’ initial decisions are made in the face of fundamen- tally unpredictable situations and that predictive strategies are therefore largely inadequate in the pre-firm stage. Against this backdrop, ‘effectuation’- a non-predictive logic used by expert entre- preneurs - is positioned as a viable alternative. Yet, despite the rapidly growing volume of schol- arship devoted to effectuation, research on its antecedents remains limited in scope. While the role of entrepreneurial experience has been the focus of much investigation, theory still does not adequately explain why entrepreneurs, confronted with identical conditions, vary in their reliance on effectuation. In particular, what are the factors that may mitigate an “experience deficit” and promote the use of effectuation among novices? In addressing this question we specifically focus on entrepreneurial self-efficacy (ESE) and situational framing (opportunity and threat) to understand how, depending on the level of ESE, the same uncertain situation may be interpreted through different lenses, thereby evoking different strategic responses.

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