| Dick Langlois |
The new issue of Organization Studies carries an article by John Mathews called “Lachmannian Insights into Strategic Entrepreneurship: Resources, Activities, and Routines in a Disequilibrium World.” Here’s the abstract.
Recent contributions to the organizational literature see the radical subjectivist and disequilibrium framework of Ludwig Lachmann as providing a suitable foundation for strategic entrepreneurial studies, in that his approach seeks independence from conventional equilibrium-based reasoning. In a Lachmannian spirit, this article suggests that strategizing can fruitfully be viewed as choices made by the entrepreneur in terms of the organization’s constituent resources, activities and routines together with their recombinations and complexifications. Cast in a general, disequilibrium setting, the strategic goals that guide the organizational entrepreneur’s strategizing can be formulated in terms of the construction and capture of resource complementarities, the pursuit of increasing returns through activities reconfiguration, and the generation of learning and dynamic capabilities through reconfiguration of routines. Once formulated in this way, the strategizing issues may be seen to make sense not just in the comparative static and imperfect equilibrium frameworks within which they have hitherto been posed, but in a more general dynamic and disequilibrium setting that corresponds to the real conditions in which firms are required to make entrepreneurial decisions. The simplified framework offers some hope for overcoming the balkanization of management scholarship that is so widely deplored.