Title: Family firm research: sketching a research field

Authors: Sascha Kraus, Rainer Harms, Matthias Fink

Addresses: University of Liechtenstein, Furst-Franz-Josef-Strasse, FL-9490 Vaduz, Liechtenstein. ' Dutch Institute for Knowledge Intensive Entrepreneurship (NIKOS), University of Twente, Postbus 217, 7500 AE Enschede, The Netherlands. ' RiCC, Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration, Augasse 2-6, A-1090 Vienna, Austria

Abstract: Due to the importance of family firms for the economy, researchers have begun to embrace family firms as a research object. This article seeks to summarise and to structure family firm research based on an extensive survey of the literature. Important research foundations such as the definition of family firms, a theoretical foundation in the resource based view and in entrepreneurship and research topics such as performance differences of family firms, their goal structure, psychological ownership and business succession are outlined and discussed.

Keywords: familiness; family firms; resource-based views; small and medium-sized enterprises; SMEs; research fields; business definitions; performance differences; goal structures; psychological ownership; business succession; entrepreneurship; innovation management; entrepreneurial behaviour; family businesses.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEIM.2011.038446

International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management, 2011 Vol.13 No.1, pp.32 - 47

Published online: 07 Feb 2011 *

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