'One Day, All This Will Be Yours': A Bourdieusian exploration of innovation in the family firm

Salmon, Udeni (2019) 'One Day, All This Will Be Yours': A Bourdieusian exploration of innovation in the family firm. In: Contemporary Issues in Management. Edward Elgar Publishing. ISBN 978-1-78811-829-3

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Item Type:Book Section
Item Status:Live Archive

Abstract

The family firm was the dominant organisational form in the 19th century economies of the United States and Europe (Marshall, 1890). The assumption was that innate ability, entrepreneurial talent and good luck were sufficient for an individual to set up a business that would be inherited by their children. Today, family firms continue to dominate the global economy: family firms constitute over 90% of all businesses in the world (GEM UK, 2014) and within the UK, over 65% of all Small and Medium sized enterprises are family firms (Department for Business Innovation and Skills, 2014). Ability, talent and good fortune are no longer sufficient for family firms to persist in a highly competitive and globalised economy. Innovation, or the activity of introducing new products, processes, and services, is now crucial for long-term success. This chapter interrogates the nature of the family firm, drawing on interviews gathered with those working in such organisations, and shows how sociological insights help us understand their qualities. By interpreting the words of the families who own and manage firms, we are able to interpret how they approach the essential activity of innovation. We are also able to understand why technocratic definitions of innovation fail to understand the complex, personal nature of innovation as it takes place in the family firm.

Keywords:family firms, Innovation, Bourdieu, SMEs
Subjects:N Business and Administrative studies > N100 Business studies
Divisions:Eleanor Glanville Centre
ID Code:42178
Deposited On:25 Sep 2020 09:51

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