Calls for papers


International Journal of Organisational Design and Engineering
International Journal of Organisational Design and Engineering


Special Issue on: "Entrepreneurial Development"

Martin Cloutier, University of Quebec at Montreal, Canada

Organisational design issues are becoming increasingly relevant to very small (VSEs) and small and medium (SMEs) entrepreneurial ventures. It is well recognised that from the time of their inception, VSEs rely extensively on various types of support through both formal (e.g. business support providers, incubators, etc.) and informal networks, to complement internal capabilities and competences that are lacking.

Yet, little research has been conducted on the role organisational design plays at these early stages, where the entrepreneur must negotiate, for instance, trade-offs between entrepreneurial and administrative actions. At perhaps different scales, are these organisational design tradeoffs in VSEs and SMEs similar or different to the ones that consist in resolving tensions between external entrepreneurial supports versus internal activity coordination? Is organisational design in an entrepreneurial context a search for a fixed outcome or an evolving activity as the venture follows its development? What are the possible interorganisational design dependency and coordination issues that need to be balanced for VSEs and SMEs at the early development stage?

This special issue is devoted to research aimed at understanding implications of organisational design in early-stage venture development in VSEs and SMEs. We seek papers that explore how such organisations address organisational design issues arising from having to balance their need for external knowledge and support with internal action coordination. This tension may represent a genuine challenge in such firms as they generally lack an abundance of resources and capabilities which would otherwise reduce the need for balancing organisational design issues.

Potential research topics might include but are not limited to research that offer insights into the performance implications of organisational design; adoption of strategies for organisational design in early-stage ventures; balancing external support and internal coordination; strategies of early-stage ventures for organisational design that supports the building of firm-level resources and competencies (human and financial resources, etc.); creation of dynamic capabilities; and implications for organisational performance, innovation and sustainability.

Subject Coverage
Suitable topics include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Impact of entrepreneurial administrative actions and processes on organisational design
  • Organisational design as an evolving activity in entrepreneurial development rather than a search for an outcome
  • VSEs' and SMEs' organisational design and the role of internal and external uncertainty
  • Organisational design performance in resolving tensions between external entrepreneurial support and internal firm coordination
  • Organisational design and its influence on the exploitation of entrepreneurial opportunities, whether locally or internationally
  • External information and its influence on entrepreneurial development and organisational design
  • Interorganisational design priorities and issues for VSEs and SMEs
We welcome contributions that tackle organisational design and related issues from a variety of theoretical and empirical perspectives. Contributions to this special issue may take a range of form s(case studies, action research, grounded theory, design science, statistical analysis and simulation), may focus on different units and levels of analysis, and may employ quantitative, qualitative or mixed research approaches.

Notes for Prospective Authors

Submitted papers should not have been previously published nor be currently under consideration for publication elsewhere. (N.B. Conference papers may only be submitted if the paper has been completely re-written and if appropriate written permissions have been obtained from any copyright holders of the original paper).

All papers are refereed through a peer review process.

All papers must be submitted online. To submit a paper, please read our Submitting articles page.

Enquiries can be emailed to the Editor at

Important Dates

Submission deadline: 31 May, 2015

Reviews: 31 July 2015

Final versions due by: 1 October, 2015