Main Article Content
Innovations that counter professional and conventional ways meet barriers to acceptance in communities of experts. How small businesses meet and seek to overcome these barriers may determine the ultimate success of their innovations. A collective case study of 32 firms involving 40 innovation projects revealed that this initial opposition from scientific and professional groups may overwhelm entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs lack strategies to deal with and move beyond this opposition to gain entry and acceptance in professional communities. Interpreting the findings through the lens of practice theory, we find that entrepreneurial practices pose challenges to professional practices, to professional authority, to accepted methods and to the imagination. Successful entrepreneurs demonstrate flexibility, aligning their practices to the practices of the professional groups. Mutual alignment of practices will serve both entrepreneurs and professions.
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