On the Recognition of Venturing Opportunities in Science and Technology

William A. Lucas, Sarah Y. Cooper, Elena M. Rodriguez-Falcon

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademic

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This paper seeks to understand the psychological mechanisms which support the recognition of science and technology-based opportunities for new ventures. Opportunity recognition is viewed as a critical skill in venturing activities, but there is doubt about the mechanisms involved. The entrepreneurship literature contains a tradition of seeing opportunity recognition as a less than conscious process, that starts with an “initial intuition,” and “involves a subconscious evaluation,” a view that suggests the psychological process of directed attention, where the direction for any given individual is a function of personal interests and experience. A small number of qualitative interviews at the University of Sheffield are first reported that support the finding that such a cognitive mechanism is present. Then a scale used to measure “attention to use” in a survey of 494 science and engineering students at four UK universities is presented, along with its correlation with venturing and applied technology self-efficacy. The conclusion addresses the implications of recognising directed attention as a major component of opportunity recognition.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 14th Annual High Technology Small Firms Conference and Doctoral Workshop 2006
EditorsGloria Rossini
Place of PublicationEnschede
PublisherUniversity of Twente
Number of pages13
ISBN (Print)9789081078412
Publication statusPublished - 2006
Externally publishedYes
Event14th Annual High Technology Small Firms Conference, HTSF 2006 - University of Twente, Enschede, Netherlands
Duration: 11 May 200613 May 2006
Conference number: 14


Conference14th Annual High Technology Small Firms Conference, HTSF 2006
Abbreviated titleHTSF


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