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The Entrepreneur

An Economic Theory, Second Edition Mark Casson, Professor of Economics and Director, Centre for Institutions and Economic History, University of Reading, UK
This thoroughly revised and updated new edition of Mark Casson’s modern classic The Entrepreneur presents a novel synthesis of the ideas of Joseph Schumpeter, Frank Knight and Friedrich Hayek, according to which the defining characteristic of the entrepreneur is the exercise of judgement in business decisions.
Extent: 288 pp
Hardback Price: $146.00 Web: $131.40
Publication Date: 2003
ISBN: 978 1 85898 910 5
Availability: In Stock
Paperback Price: $61.00 Web: $48.80
Publication Date: 2005
ISBN: 978 1 84542 193 9
Availability: In Stock
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  • Business and Management
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Economics and Finance
  • Economics of Entrepreneurship
This thoroughly revised and updated new edition of Mark Casson’s modern classic The Entrepreneur presents a novel synthesis of the ideas of Joseph Schumpeter, Frank Knight and Friedrich Hayek, according to which the defining characteristic of the entrepreneur is the exercise of judgement in business decisions.

This pathbreaking volume argues that good judgement is based on a unique combination of information, and that this information is typically exploited by founding a ‘market-making’ firm, which links customers and suppliers who could not otherwise make contact with each other. This assessment of entrepreneurship, Mark Casson contends, has important implications for the growth of firms, social mobility and ‘enterprise culture’.

This second edition is essential reading for scholars of economics, management, business history and economic history. Academics from a wide range of economic schools of thought, both orthodox and heterodox, will find the book to be an original and outstanding work.
‘This update of the 1982 edition of the same title is a substantially rewritten volume taking account of much recent work in the areas of asymmetric information, market making and recent research on the characteristics of entrepreneurs. I liked the application of Edgworth-Bowley box approaches to concepts of intermediation and tracking surpluses. . . This is an excellent synthesis of key developments concerning the theory of entrepreneurship and deserves a wide audience within the social sciences.’
– Chih-cheng Yang, Economic Issues

‘The debates are still fresh and contemporaneous, and the language is rigorous and fluid. The book is still original. Not only does it provide a fairly easily digestible review of the main functions of the entrepreneurial process; it also synthesizes the relationship between the process and neo-classical economics. . . It is to be hoped that The Entrepreneur will be re-read by non-economists who ignore the economic theory of the entrepreneur. It ought to be recommended as a key text on masters programmes that deal with the theory of the firm, the role of small business and the entrepreneurial process.’
– Gerard McElwee, International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation

‘This is an important work for the field of entrepreneurship. Casson has again tried valiantly to restore the entrepreneur and the process of market making in the future to their rightful places in economic theory. The end result is a highly successful synthesis of key insights from neoclassical economics and Austrian theories into a broader analytical framework. By emphasizing the role of information, Casson has brought this second edition of The Entrepreneur more up-to-date with modern currents in economic theory. This is one of the most analytically rigorous, and yet comprehensive, treatments of entrepreneurship and market making process available today. It is a “must-read” for all scholars interested in the role and process of entrepreneurship in society, and is essential reading for all doctoral programs in economics and entrepreneurship.’
– Sankaran Venkataraman, University of Virginia, US

‘This book is a worthy successor to Frank Knight’s seminal study on the entrepreneur published in 1921. Indeed, it probes more deeply and carefully into the functions of the entrepreneur and the practice of entrepreneurship; and at the same time cleverly relates these to recent advances in both neo-classical and institutional economics. It is a highly original and thought provoking piece of work; and written in the rigorous, yet urbane style that we have come to expect from Mark Casson.’
– John H. Dunning, University of Reading, UK and Rutgers University, US
Contents: Preface to the Second Edition Introduction Part I: Theoretical Foundations 1. The Significance of the Entrepreneur 2. Basic Concepts of the Theory 3. The Entrepreneur as Intermediator 4. The Competitive Threat to the Entrepreneur 5. Partial Coordination: The Case of Innovation Part II: The Market-making Firm 6. Making a Market 7. Internal and External Markets 8. The Market for Information 9. Speculative Intermediation and the Role of Inventory Management 10. Organizing the Supply of Market-making Services Part III: Synthesis 11. Growth and Dynamics of the Firm 12. The Market for Entrepreneurs 13. Social Mobility and the Entrepreneur 14. Alternative Theories of the Entrepreneur 15. Conclusions Bibliography Index