Regional culture and networking techniques amongst Canadian entrepreneurs

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

Abstract

While networking is a critical component in the entrepreneurship process, it is also a distinctly personal activity dependent on an entrepreneur’s own personal outlooks and local community norms. This paper examines how regional cultural outlooks inform the networking and socializing practices of technology entrepreneurs in Calgary and Waterloo, Canada to better understand the interface between local cultural structures and individual practices. Entrepreneurs have the choice to socialize with other entrepreneurs, advisors, and investors or to spend that time either working on their business or on family and personal activities. These choices are made within local cultural contexts, which can either prioritize entrepreneurial networking or place more emphasis on other forms of business or personal development. Interviews with entrepreneurs in the three cities reveal that cultural context plays a significant role in both the proclivity of entrepreneurs to actively network as well as the networking practices they employ and their ability to form dense information sharing networks with their local entrepreneurial community. Waterloo’s entrepreneurial culture promotes intensive networking amongst entrepreneurs, while Calgary’s culture creates social barriers to this kind of networking if it is perceived to come at the expense of either a firm’s revenues or taking away time spent with family and friends. The entrepreneurial networks in a community can therefore be seen as a material manifestation of local cultural outlooks.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRoyal Geography Society/Institute of British Geographers International Conference 2014
Place of PublicationLondon
Number of pages27
Publication statusUnpublished - 27 Aug 2014
EventRGS-IBG Annual Conference 2014 - Royal Geographical Society, London, United Kingdom
Duration: 26 Aug 201429 Aug 2014

Conference

ConferenceRGS-IBG Annual Conference 2014
CountryUnited Kingdom
CityLondon
Period26/08/1429/08/14

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