- Entrepreneurial Cognition
- International Entrepreneurship
- Opportunity Identification & Evaluation
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Daniel Clark is an Assistant Professor of Entrepreneurship at the Ivey Business School. He is a finalist and/or winner of numerous awards for his teaching, research, and reviewing. His research has been published in outlets such as the Academy of Management Review, Journal of International Business Studies, Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, Journal of Business Venturing Insights, Journal of Small Business Management, and Business Horizons. In 2020, he was appointed Associate Editor of the Journal of Small Business Management.
His current research explores the cognition and decision-making of entrepreneurs; in particular, how entrepreneurs make complex decisions about starting, growing, and internationalizing their ventures.
Born and raised in Ontario, he is a prolific traveler who has lived in three additional countries, visited more than forty more, and is now back living in Canada for the first time since 2012. Father, husband, dog-owner, and nursing a significant addiction to the Food Network; his family is happy he stopped after 4 degrees.
- PhD. Indiana University
- MB Indiana University
- MBA Queen’s University
- BSc Dalhousie University
Recent Refereed Articles
Clark, D. C.; Bradley, K., (Forthcoming), "Entrepreneurial Leadership: Putting the “U” in Team", Business Horizons Abstract: Entrepreneurial firms, due to their size and limited resources, are at a significant disadvantage when it comes to attracting, hiring, and retaining top talent. These challenges place the firm’s survival and success in jeopardy, as they waste resources on talent management and operate amid talent shortfalls. Simply put, in the scale-up phase, managing talent could be the most important activity entrepreneurs pursue. While entrepreneurs cannot eliminate their strategic shortcomings (e.g., prestige, the ability to pay top salaries), they can take advantage of their unique strengths (e.g., a more intimate environment, job flexibility, and greater opportunities for growth, advancement, and leadership) to make themselves more competitive among candidates not necessarily destined for large corporations. In this article, drawing upon the lessons of best practice and theory, we make three recommendations for entrepreneurial hiring managers: (1) treat all prospective employees as transformative organizational members, (2) recognize and embrace the contributions of all, and (3) make new and established employees consistently feel valued. While these lessons allow all managers to display their organizational strengths, they provide the best return on investment for those with the greatest hiring challenges: entrepreneurs.
Link(s) to publication:
- Clark, D. C., 2023, "Embracing whistleblowing for enhanced firm self-regulation", Business Horizons, November 66(6): 817 - 833.
Clark, D. C., 2023, "Exceptionality in Entrepreneurship: Systematically Investigating Outlier Outcomes.", Journal of Business Venturing Insights, November 20 Abstract: Entrepreneurship is the study of ordinary people doing extraordinary things: outliers in society, seeing and enacting new venture opportunities, while most others do not. Historically, the field of entrepreneurship has been dominated by competing homogeneity and heterogeneity perspectives. Extending current heterogeneity trends in the domain, this article builds the case for the benefits of examining the exceptional of the exceptional: entrepreneurs that produce extraordinary results. We argue that outlier entrepreneurs are not aberrations or empirical nuisances to be explained away or “fixed” through statistical wizardry. Rather, in most entrepreneurship phenomenon, those extremely high performing and disproportionately influential cases are “the goal” of entrepreneurship, and exactly where valuable theory-building potential lies. Building on several growing conversations in entrepreneurship research, we introduce why some phenomenological domains share characteristic potential for generating important insights using an outlier approach and present a set of methodological tools to tackle them.
Link(s) to publication:
- Clark, D. C.; Pidduck, R. J., 2023, "International new ventures: Beyond definitional debates to advancing the cornerstone of international entrepreneurship", Journal of Small Business Management: 1 - 23.
Clark, D. C.; Pidduck, R. J.; Lumpkin, G. T.; Covin, J. G., 2023, "Is It Okay to Study Entrepreneurial Orientation (EO) at the Individual Level? Yes!", Entrepreneurship: Theory and Practice Abstract: Entrepreneurial orientation (EO) is an important construct in the fields of management and entrepreneurship research. Interest in EO knowledge continues to thrive with a burgeoning research agenda in multiple contexts and with diverse implications. However, a subset of this research, which endeavors to apply the EO construct to explain or predict individuals’ entrepreneurial beliefs and behaviors, has met with resistance. This paper examines the case for EO at the individual level (Ind.EO). We consider the EO legacy concerns, and the various theoretical implications and benefits of doing so. Drawing upon an “EO as a family of constructs” framework, we propose paths forward for studying Ind.EO credibly, consistent with, but distinct from, traditional firm-level EO. Finally, we outline a research agenda and discuss the contributions and potential implications for Ind.EO research across the wider entrepreneurship discipline.
Link(s) to publication:
Clark, D. C.; Pidduck, R.; Tietz, M. A., (Forthcoming), "The Malleability of International Entrepreneurial Cognitions: A Natural Quasi-Experimental Study on Voluntary and Involuntary Shocks", International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research Abstract: Purpose - We investigate the durability of international entrepreneurial cognitions. Specifically, we examine how advanced business education and the Covid-19 pandemic influence international entrepreneurial orientation disposition (IEOD) and subsequently entrepreneurial intentions, to better understand the psychological dynamics underpinning the drivers of international entrepreneurship. Design/methodology/approach - Against the backdrop of emerging entrepreneurial cognition and international entrepreneurial orientation research, we theorize that both a planned business education intervention (voluntary) and an unforeseeable radical environmental (involuntary) change constitute cognitive shocks impacting the disposition and intention to engage in entrepreneurial efforts. We use pre and post Covid-19 panel data (n = 233) and uniquely identify the idiosyncratic cognitive effects of Covid-19 through changes in the OCEAN personality assessment. Findings - Findings demonstrate that when individuals’ perceived psychological impact of Covid-19 is low, business education increases IEOD. Conversely, the effects of a strongly perceived Covid-19 impact reduce the risk-taking and proactiveness components of the IEOD scale. We trace the same effects forward to entrepreneurial intentions. Originality - We uniquely employ a baseline measure of all our constructs pre-Covid-19 to discern and isolate the pandemic impact on entrepreneurial dispositions and intentions, responding to recent calls for more experimental designs in entrepreneurship research. Research limitations/implications - This paper contributes to a greater understanding of the resilience of entrepreneurial dispositions through an empirical test of the IEOD scale and shows its boundary conditions under planned intervention as well as unplanned externally induced shock. Practical implications - We offer a first benchmark to practitioners of the malleability of international entrepreneurial dispositions and discuss the potential to encourage international entrepreneurial behaviour and the individual-level dispositional risk posed by exogenous shocks.
Clark, D. C.; Tietz, M. A.; Kumar, M., 2022, "Getting to the one: Prioritizing an idea set using preference-based decision-specific heuristics", Journal of Small Business Management: 1 - 41. Abstract: We propose and test a process where potential entrepreneurs (PEs) prioritize a venture idea consideration set using preference-based decision-specific heuristics to assess idea feasibility and desirability. We test our hypotheses through two studies with PEs. The first experiment shows that prioritization occurs, with 113 of 122 PEs voluntarily changing a randomized list of their ideated ventures into a rank-ordered priority list of potential opportunities. Second, we employ a novel “equivocal forced-choice” conjoint design with 250 PEs. We find empirical support that PEs prioritize via relative preferences for experience-based knowledge, strong social ties, and low risk/low reward venture ideas. We contribute to the entrepreneurship literature by theorizing and providing evidence of a prioritization stage for multiple idea sets before evaluation. Further, we demonstrate the influence of individual and social network factors on prioritization and expand our understanding of how PEs conceptualize risk in venturing.
Link(s) to publication:
- Pidduck, R.; Schaffer, M. A.; Clark, D. C., (Forthcoming), "The Microfoundations of Born Globals: A Social Cognitive Careers Perspective", Journal Of Small Business Management
Pidduck, R. J.; Clark, D. C.; Lumpkin, G. T., (Forthcoming), "Entrepreneurial mindset: Dispositional beliefs, opportunity beliefs, and entrepreneurial behavior", Journal Of Small Business Management: 1 - 35. Abstract: Research on entrepreneurial mindset (EM) has proliferated in recent years. Its importance rests on a key assumption: EM matters for entrepreneurial behavior. However, to date, EM conceptualizations remain fragmented, and theories delineating the relationship between EM and the behaviors underpinning entrepreneurship are limited. In this article, we conceptualize EM as a goal orientation formed through dispositional beliefs about entrepreneurship and opportunity beliefs, which results in entrepreneurial behaviors. We draw upon recent advances in entrepreneurial orientation (EO) research at the individual level as a model for dispositional beliefs. Further, we theorize the origins, mechanisms, manifestations, and effect of EM. Finally, we discuss important implications for stakeholders interested in leveraging EM to stimulate entrepreneurial activity and lay out a research agenda for future development of our disposition-based framework.
Link(s) to publication:
Pidduck, R. J.; Shaffer, M. A.; Zhang, Y.; Clark, D. C., (Forthcoming), "Unpacking the emergence of born global founders: A careers perspective", Journal Of Small Business Management: 1 - 41. Abstract: New ventures that internationalize aggressively from or near founding have been of continued interest in international entrepreneurship. A rich literature now exists in which researchers make numerous distinctions between types or subcategories of rapidly internationalizing firms and how these relate to nuances in performance outcomes. Conversely, little progress has been made toward a theoretical understanding of why these seemingly unique firms emerge in the first place. We contend that a key question remains unanswered: Why do some entrepreneurs from the outset compound the liability of newness, inherent in entrepreneurship, with the liability of foreignness, inherent in internationalization? Drawing from social cognitive careers theory, we developed a model explaining the emergence of entrepreneurial intentions to found explicitly global ventures. We tested our model across two distinct studies, using a multiwave multicountry approach, and found consistent support for an interest pathway to these entrepreneurial intentions. The simple, yet novel, implication is that noneconomic logic shaping entrepreneurs’ vocational choices can help explain why some founders take additional risks by overtly focusing on aggressive global growth from inception.
Link(s) to publication:
- Pidduck, R. J.; Clark, D. C., 2021, "Transitional entrepreneurship: Elevating research into marginalized entrepreneurs", Journal of Small Business Management, November 59(6): 1081 - 1096.
Clark, D. C.; Li, D.; Shepherd, D. A., 2018, "Country familiarity in the initial stage of foreign market selection", Journal Of International Business Studies, May 49(4): 442 - 472. Abstract: Focusing on the initial stage of foreign market selection (i.e., narrowing a set of potential countries from which to make a final choice), we theorize that manager’s country familiarity influences both the decision-making process and outcome. We hypothesize that with increasing country familiarity, (a) manager investment of cognitive effort (process) first increases and then decreases, and (b) the likelihood of a country being included for further consideration (outcome) also increases and then decreases. We further hypothesize that the effects of country familiarity are contingent on the managers’ international experience. Empirical evidence from verbal protocol analyses of managers provides strong support to our arguments. These findings contribute to the emergent literature on the critical role of cognition in decision making about foreign markets. Manager cognition potentially influences sequential/non-sequential entry decision making, possibly explaining some previously observed exceptions to internationalization process theory. The contingent role of international experience further stresses that the influence of cognition in internationalization decision making is both important and complex, involving, at least, innate cognitive processes, idiosyncratic knowledge, and international experience. We discuss the theoretical implications, along with practice implications, of country familiarity and intuitive decision making in foreign market selection.
Link(s) to publication:
Clark, D. C.; McGrath, P. J.; MacDonald, N., 2007, "Members' of Parliament knowledge of and attitudes toward health research and funding", Canadian Medical Association Journal, October 177(9): 1045 - 1051. Abstract: Background: Establishment of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) in 2000 resulted in increased funding for health research in Canada. Since 2001, the number of proposals submitted to CIHR that, following peer review, are judged to be of scientific merit to warrant funding, has grown by 77%. But many of these proposals do not receive funding because of budget constraints. Given the role of Members of Parliament in setting government funding priorities, we surveyed Members of Parliament about their knowledge of and attitudes toward health research, health research funding and CIHR.
Methods: All Members of Parliament were invited to participate, or to designate a senior aide to participate, in a 15-minute survey of knowledge of and attitudes toward health research, health research funding and CIHR. Interviews were conducted between July 15, 2006, and Dec. 20, 2006. Responses were analyzed by party affiliation, region and years of service as a Member of Parliament.
Results: A total of 101 of 308 Members of Parliament or their designated senior aides participated in the survey. Almost one-third of respondents were senior aides. Most of the respondents (84%) were aware of CIHR, but 32% knew nothing about its role. Participants believed that health research is a critical component of a strong health care system and that it is underfunded. Overall, 78% felt that the percentage of total government spending directed to health research funding was too low; 85% felt the same way about the percentage of government health care spending directed to health research. Fifty-four percent believed that the federal government should provide both funding and guidelines for health research, and 66% believed that the business sector should be the primary source of health research funding. Participants (57%) most frequently defined health research as study into cures or treatments of disease, and 22% of participants were aware that CIHR is the main federal government funding organization for health research. Participants perceived health research to be a low priority for Canadian voters (mean ranking 3.8/10, with 1 being unimportant and 10 being extremely important [SD 1.85]).
Interpretation: Our results highlight significant knowledge gaps among Members of Parliament regarding health research. Many of these knowledge gaps will need to be addressed if health research is to become a priority.
Over the past 8 years, health research has been an important but declining priority for the federal government. The development of the Canada Foundation for Innovation, the Canada Research Chairs, Genome Canada, the Networks of Centres of Excellence, the Canadian Health Services Foundation and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)1 reflects this initial interest. Although most of these programs receive multi-year funding, CIHR receives annual funding from the federal government. However, its annual increases have not risen proportionately with the number of requests for funding it receives each year.
CIHR is the federal funding body for health research and consists of 13 institutes. It supports 4 pillars of research: biomedical research, clinical research, social and cultural aspects of health and population health research, and health services and systems research. With the formation of CIHR,2 federal funding for health research increased from $289 million in 2000 to $553 million in 2002, with subsequent 5%–6% annual increases until 2006. That year, the increase was 2.4%.3 The initial increases in funding stimulated a sharp rise in the number of grants submitted and funded annually. In the 2006 competition, the increase in funding was lower than expected and the success rate in the open competition fell to 16% from the mean rate of 31.7% in previous years. As a result, 60% of peer-reviewed grants rated as very good or excellent were not funded, as compared with 38% in 2001 (CIHR: unpublished data,2007).
Because Members of Parliament vote annually to determine CIHR's budget for funding health research, we surveyed Members of Parliament and their senior aides about their knowledge of and attitudes toward health research, health research funding and CIHR.
Link(s) to publication:
Honours & Awards
- IE Business School, Top Instructor, 2020 & 2021
- AOM Best Reviewer, Entrepreneurship (2014 & 2017)
- AOM Best Reviewer, International Management (2017, 2018 & 2019)
- AIB Best Reviewer (2013, 2014 & 2019)
- AOM Entrepreneurship Division Best Paper from a Doctoral Dissertation (2015)
- AIB Best Dissertation, Finalist
- AOM Best Dissertation, Finalist
- Kelley School of Business, Top PhD Instructor, 2017
- Kelley School of Business, Panschar Teaching Award, Finalist, 2016
- IE Business School, Madrid, Spain (2018-2021)
- Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana, USA (2012-2017)