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Entrepreneurial Leadership And Transformational Change

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2007 Annual Conference & Exposition


Honolulu, Hawaii

Publication Date

June 24, 2007

Start Date

June 24, 2007

End Date

June 27, 2007



Conference Session

Systems Engineering and Entrepreneurship

Tagged Division

Entrepreneurship & Engineering Innovation

Page Count


Page Numbers

12.680.1 - 12.680.23



Permanent URL

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Paper Authors

author page

Barbara Karanian Wentworth Institute of Technology

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Entrepreneurial Leadership: A Balancing Act in Engineering and Science

Abstract Building on previous work, “Entrepreneurial Leadership, Gender and Teams,” multiple participants representative of private, public and academic settings were interviewed to uncover the unique features of the entrepreneurial leader in the engineering and science context. One central question organized the current work. If the entrepreneur gets everyone excited and the leader calms everyone down, does the entrepreneurial leader balance both?

This research explores the construct of entrepreneurial leadership using the following independent elements as a guide: gender as a social experience, past parental relationships, cultural roots, real time strategic risk taking behavior, capacity to predict and create cross- functional teams, and a character type that thrives on the challenge of change. Specific consideration is given to emerging dimensions and attributes influencing survival. Discussion includes: 1) ways that the entrepreneurial leader assesses the audience with precision, 2) acts on the belief that various sectors of technology drives leadership, 3) calculates the growth towards what is authentic and new, 4)expects external confrontation, 5) understands the paradox of expansion, and 6)preserves the past while launching into the future. Story and visual perspectives of the entrepreneurial leader are explored for the purpose of attracting, teaching, and assessing the global 21st Century engineer.

1. Introduction

The work reported here began with a fascination for leadership, and some observations about the characteristics and practices that link the leader and the entrepreneur. Phase I of this study drew parallels from psychological theory to entrepreneurial leadership practice in academia and business. The goals were outlined to both search for understanding ‘entrepreneurial leadership’ and potential use for that understanding to attract, teach, and assess the global 21st Century engineer. Thus the work presented is an attempt to take a closer look at the intersection of leadership and entrepreneurship through a collaborative approach of two disciplines, engineering and psychology, and to utilize the intersections of the fields to understand the role of the entrepreneurial leader in survival.

The author’s original intention in the fall of 2006 was to conduct hypothesis driven research. To do this she created, modified and revised a research design that featured ‘survival’ as the dependent variable. Multiple discussions with professors at engineering institutions that included business or entrepreneurship programs were conducted with two goals: First, she wanted to investigate a central question, “If the entrepreneur gets everyone excited and the leader calm everyone down, does the entrepreneurial leader balance both?” And she wanted to systematically compile previous and new data with a research approach that would both justify an extensive corpus of data and make sense in an innovative way. Inspired by the new approaches of the leaders that were interviewed and recognizing that the research agenda

Karanian, B. (2007, June), Entrepreneurial Leadership And Transformational Change Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. 10.18260/1-2--2961

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2007 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015