Abstract

Coping is the response to the demands of a stressful situation (Folkman & Lazarus, 1980). In the context of external traumatic shocks, recent findings suggest that venture creation can be one way to cope with them (Powell and Baker, 2014; Williams and Shepherd, 2014).

While we are just starting to learn how engaging in entrepreneurial venturing shapes post disaster functioning among disaster-affected community members at large (Williams and Shepherd, 2016), not much is yet known about how these events affect the psychological well being (PWB) of entrepreneurs in particular. Specifically, if loss of business has a negative effect on PWB, can venture creation become a productive coping strategy to deal with the stress generated by traumatic shocks?

In this paper we seek to address this question by drawing from theories on coping and entrepreneurship. We explore the value of venture creation as an active coping strategy, and suggest that PWB is a function of local resource assessments and individual’s coping strategies in the context of natural disasters.

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