Sunday, July 15, 2018

Can the right story increase your income or help the poor?

See Think Positive, Climb Out of Poverty? It Just Might Work by Seema Jayachandran in The NY Times. Even if these programs work, they raise an important question: if everyone gets the "right" story told to them, would we all become richer?


"In Kampala, Uganda, students who watched a feel-good movie about a chess prodigy improved their academic results. In Oaxaca, Mexico, clients of a microcredit organization were successfully trained to have greater aspirations for the future. And in Kolkata, India, sex workers in brothels were imbued with a sense of empowerment that helped them to take concrete steps to improve their lives."

"In Kampala, Uganda, for example, a study by Emma Riley, a graduate student at the University of Oxford in Britain, examined the effects on students of watching a movie, “Queen of Katwe,” starring Lupita Nyong’o and David Oyelowo. The Disney movie is based on the life of Phiona Mutesi, a girl from a poor township in Kampala, whose father died of AIDS when she was young.

Ms. Mutesi went on to become a champion chess player, representing Uganda in international competitions, an achievement that exceeded what many students in Uganda had expected for themselves or even thought possible.

To encourage them to aim higher, students preparing for their national exams were shown the movie. When they took the exams, they performed better than a control group that instead watched a Hollywood fantasy movie, “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children,” that did not feature an appropriate role model. Significantly more of the “Queen of Katwe” movie watchers had scores high enough to gain admission to a public university."

"The Kolkata, India, experiment, conducted by five scholars based in the United Kingdom and India, ran a short course on personal growth for 264 sex workers, who had often felt stigmatized and powerless. After participating, the women had measurably greater self-esteem and a stronger belief that they could determine the course of their lives. More concretely, they began saving more money and getting more frequent health checkups.

These successes suggest that even traditional anti-poverty programs work partly because they lift people up psychologically. For example, a program designed by a nonprofit in Bangladesh that has also been used in India, Ethiopia, Peru and other countries has given poor people livestock plus training on how to care for the animals.

This aid package has raised participants’ incomes more than might have been expected, based on the direct monetary value of the animals and the education. What helps to explain the outsize impact is that participants started working more hours."

Critics of anti-poverty aid have charged that it encourages laziness, but in this case, the opposite happened. The assistance motivated people to work harder. The extra work was partly a rational calculation: Productive assets like cows or goats magnified the payoff from labor. But it’s also true that participants’ mental health improved, which likely made them able to work more.

Better mental health is also one of the striking benefits of the cash grants that the American nonprofit, GiveDirectly, has given to poor households in Kenya."
"Hope isn’t a cure-all. In none of these examples can we be certain that it actually explains the gains in people’s income or education. And instilling hope without skills or financial resources is unlikely to be enough to lift people out of poverty."
"unrealistically high aspirations can be so discouraging that they are harmful. Repeatedly falling short can deplete motivation.

Still, it is welcome news that poverty-alleviation programs can amplify the good they do just by making a better life seem — and actually be — within reach."

Monday, July 2, 2018

Economists as Storytellers

By Donald J. Boudreaux. Excerpts:
"Paul Heyne (1931-2000), who taught for most of his career at the University of Washington, was one of the 20th century’s greatest teachers of economics. He excelled in the classroom, in popular writings, in public lectures, and in his indispensable textbook, The Economic Way of Thinking.
Paul made economics relevant and, hence, interesting. And perhaps the single best piece of advice that he offered to his fellow economists is to tell what he called “plausible stories.”

Far too many professional economists today ignore this advice, even when teaching an introductory class to freshmen. Indeed, wrongly thinking it to be hostile to scientific rigor, they hold this advice in contempt."

"My own take on economic methods is deeply influenced by Hayek. It is influenced also by Deirdre McCloskey who insists that whatever methods work to further our understanding are legitimate methods."

"Although verbal stories have nothing of the appearance of Science, they are a legitimate and scientific method of gaining – and of sharing – understanding. In fact, for some purposes, verbal stories are by far the method that works best. 

Consider Leonard Read’s famous story “I, Pencil.” In unassuming prose, Read revealed the surprising though indisputable truth that the amount of knowledge necessary to make an ordinary commercial-grade pencil is inconceivably greater than is the amount of knowledge that can be comprehended by a single individual or by a committee of even the most genius of individuals. (In 1776, Adam Smith told a similar, although much shorter, story about an ordinary woolen coat.)"

"Leonard Read’s long-time secretary, Jeanette Brown, told me that Read one day in 1958 squirreled himself away, alone in his office at the Foundation for Economic Education, and for hours did nothing but contemplate a pencil. This contemplation – combined with Read’s extensive reading of great economics texts – is what Jeanette believes to be the source of Read’s insight as told in “I Pencil.”  

If Jeanette is correct – as to me she seems to be – in what way is Read’s pondering a pencil and thereby discovering the insights that he shared in “I, Pencil” less deserving of the label “scientific inquiry” than is, say, an astronomer pondering the night sky through a telescope and thereby discovering a previously unknown star? 

Both inquiries uncover truths that are objective in the sense that they can be conveyed to other people, each of whom is free not only to challenge or to accept the claimed truths, but also to use those truths as tools in the search for other truths.

Economics, when done well, is the telling of such stories. The stories told are not fantasies or fictional. They are, a Paul Heyne said, plausible. And they are fascinating!"
See also Economists Love Fables And Parables (Or, What Is The Essence Of Economic Analysis?)

Economics resembles storytelling more than mathematics

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Even Nobel prize winning economists are talking about narratives

See Narratives, Imperatives and Moral Reasoning by Armin Falk and 2014 Nobel economics winner Jean Tirole.

This paper provides a theoretical framework to explain recent empirical findings on the malleability of morality, and suggest new testable implications. Building on a basic model with image concerns, we introduce the concept of narratives that allow individuals to maintain a positive image when in fact acting in a morally questionable way. We show how narratives, however feeble, inhibit moral behavior in downplaying externalities, magnifying the cost of moral behavior, or in suggesting not being pivotal. We further show that narratives spread virally when negative, but not when positive. We then turn to imperatives, i.e., moral rules or precepts, as a mode of communication to persuade agents to behave morally, and identify the conditions under which Kantian behavior will emerge in an otherwise fully utilitarian environment. We also show how an unwillingness to engage in trade-offs can arise, with implications for the elicitation of moral preferences. Finally, we study how collective decision making and organizational design produces a sub-additivity of responsibility."

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Moralizing gods help societies cooperate

See Why You Just Helped That Stranger by Robert M. Sapolsky. According to Wikipedia, "He is currently a professor of biology, and professor of neurology and neurological sciences and, by courtesy, neurosurgery, at Stanford University." Cooperation may be important for economies. How do you get a large number of people in a factory to work together, for example? Excerpts:
"When do religions tend to invent such moralizing gods? A number of researchers—such as Carlos A. Botero of Washington University in St. Louis and his colleagues—have shown that moralizing gods become more common in large-group cultures.

Why? Psychologist Ara Norenzayan of the University of British Columbia (UBC), looking at the size of groups, proposes that as cultures grow, something uniquely human emerges—opportunities to act anonymously. To Dr. Norenzayan, that’s when moralizing gods become useful to maintaining the social order. Even if you do something rotten and no one knows, there’s a Someone who does."

"people who play an economic game anonymously, whether they are religious or not, become more pro-social when unconsciously primed to think about God (by having to unscramble jumbled sentences that make religious references)."

"people in cultures with moralizing gods tend to be more pro-social—a hypothesis tested in a recent paper in the journal Nature by psychologist Joe Henrich of UBC and collaborators, including Dr. Norenzayan. The researchers surveyed nearly 600 people around the world, believers in such faiths as Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, animism and ancestor worship.

Subjects had to deal with a simple economic scenario: Here is X amount of money. Divide it between yourself and a geographically distant co-religionist whom you don’t know. Or divide it between that distant co-religionist and a local co-religionist whom you do know. Subjects then answered questions about their religion.

After controlling for various economic and demographic variables, back came a clear answer—the more that people considered their god(s) to be moralizing and punitive, the more generously they divvied up money with that stranger. Thus, the threat of moralizing gods may help to explain some of the human capacity for pro-social cooperation among strangers."

Friday, March 30, 2018

Are we confounding heroism and individualism? Entrepreneurs may not be lone rangers, but they are heroic nonetheless

By Jeffery S. McMullen of Indiana University. March 2017 Business Horizons. The full text of the article is at the link. Here are the last three paragraphs.
"Are entrepreneurs lone rangers? No, but that does not mean that entrepreneurship occurs without heroic individualism. Like entrepreneurship, true heroism is interdependent by its very nature. Even if an entrepreneur were somehow able to go it alone, his or her success would still depend on customers as well as other possible stakeholders (e.g., employees, investors, suppliers, distributors, etc.). Similarly, it is difficult to imagine how anyone could be heroic without a somewhat intimate knowledge of and concern for others’ welfare. Entrepreneurs must bear the costs of their actions before they receive the benefits, which only come if the costs the entrepreneurs incur ultimately benefit someone else.

Therefore, before we declare the heroic entrepreneur a myth, perhaps we should consider the term ‘myth’ as literally as Campbell has. Any innovative act exhibits an element of uncertainty and thus requires a corresponding degree of courage. Although this may only be a moment’s adrenaline rush, it is more likely an extended ride on an emotional rollercoaster that exhausts as well as elates. It is a hero’s journey of existential import and consequence. If this is true, then extraction of heroism from entrepreneurship is misguided, as it would do nothing to correct for scholars’ undersocialization of the entrepreneurial act. Instead, it would merely neglect the courage and sacrifice required from individuals like Elon Musk, who may not act alone, but nonetheless must act if entrepreneurship is to occur.

Ignoring this fact is not only likely to produce bad science but also may affect practice via bad policy. To the extent that policymakers erroneously believe heroism is unnecessary, they are likely to underestimate the costs entrepreneurs must incur not just to succeed, but also to try at all. Lack of sympathy about such sacrifices would likely shape institutional (dis)incentives. Thus, to deny that entrepreneurship is a heroic act is to neglect the need to reward its success and to forgive its potential failure. For these reasons, it may behoove scholars, policymakers, and practitioners alike to think twice before throwing out the baby of heroism with the bathwater of individualism."

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Towards a mythic process philosophy of entrepreneurship

By Lauri J. Laine & Ewald Kibler of Aalto University in FinlandThe entire article is at the link.


Drawing on the archetypal theory of the hero's journey, we present an analysis of Stanley Kubrick's 1968 film 2001: A Space Odyssey to theorise on a primordial organisation of entrepreneurial processes. We conclude by discussing opportunities implied by a mythic-process approach in developing new meaning for the ‘beginnings’ and ‘ends’ in the process philosophy of entrepreneurship."


We introduce a mythic process philosophy of entrepreneurship.
We connect process philosophy to archetypal theory.
We examine Stanley Kubrick’s 1968 film 2001: A Space Odyssey.
We theorise on a metaphysical organisation of entrepreneurial processes.
We develop meaning for ‘beginnings’ and ‘ends’ in entrepreneuring."

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Does It Matter If We Call Entrepreneurs Heroes?

Should society call entrepreneurs heroes? Are they like heroes from mythology? Those may seem like strange questions for an economist to ask. But they matter for several reasons. Dwight Lee and Candace Allen argued that if we don't honor entrepreneurial accomplishments, we won't get enough startups. Deirdre McCloskey says that economic growth only took off around the year 1800 because the West began according dignity to entrepreneurs. The work of entrepreneurs parallels the hero's adventure in mythology. The idea has been gaining attention recently, being discussed in The Wall Street Journal while Jeffery McMullen has called for scholars to once again take it seriously. Even Joseph Campbell, the author of The Hero With a Thousand Faces, one of the inspirations for Star Wars, called the entrepreneur the real hero in American capitalistic society in a radio interview (see appendix). 
            Cyril Morong was the first to examine the similarities between entrepreneurs and mythological heroes.[i],[ii] He compared entrepreneurship research to The Hero With a Thousand Faces to see if the activities of entrepreneurs corresponded to the hero's adventure. What is the hero's adventure? According to Campbell
"The standard path of the mythological adventure of the hero is a magnification of the formula represented in the rites of passage: separation-initiation-return, which might be named the nuclear unit of the monomyth. A hero ventures forth from the world of common day into a region of supernatural wonder; fabulous forces are there encountered and a decisive victory is won; the hero comes back from this mysterious adventure with the power to bestow boons on his fellow man."
How is this similar to the entrepreneur's adventure?
            The hero's journey begins with a call to adventure. He or she is awakened by some herald which touches his or her unconscious world and creative destiny. The entrepreneur, too, is "called" to the adventure. By chance, he or she discovers a previously unknown product or way to make a profit. The lucky discovery cannot be planned and is itself the herald of the adventure. Israel Kirzner sees successful entrepreneurship as result of a lucky discovery of a new opportunity for economic profit, but it is luck that was due to alertness while leading a life of purposeful action.[iii]
            The entrepreneur must step out of the ordinary way of producing and into his or her imagination about the way things could be to discover the previously undreamt of technique or product. The "fabulous forces" might be applying the assembly line technique or interchangeable parts to producing automobiles or building microcomputers in a garage. The mysterious adventure is the time spent tinkering in research and development. But once those techniques are discovered or developed, the entrepreneur now has the power to bestow this boon on the rest of humankind.
            Heroes and entrepreneurs both bring change. Campbell refers to the constant change in the universe as "The Cosmogonic Cycle" which "unrolls the great vision of the creation and destruction of the world which is vouchsafed as revelation to the successful hero." This is similar to Joseph Schumpeter's theory of entrepreneurship called “creative destruction.” A successful entrepreneur simultaneously destroys and creates a new world, or at least a new way of life. Henry Ford, for example, destroyed the horse and buggy age while creating the age of the automobile. The hero also finds that the world "suffers from a symbolical deficiency" and "appears on the scene in various forms according to the changing needs of the race." The changing needs and the deficiency correspond to the changing market conditions or the changing desires for products. The entrepreneur is the first person to perceive the changing needs.
            Candace Allen and Dwight Lee say that "society needs heroes" and that "entrepreneurs are heroes in every sense." Yet they are not often see as heroes-in fact the opposite seems to be true even though they are indispensable to economic progress. One problem is that economists have not generally promoted entrepreneurs as being important. They acknowledge that creative destruction was "the hallmark of entrepreneurship" without mentioning the parallel to Campbell. Entrepreneurs are motivated not just by money but also by "service to something transcendental."  Their views can be summed up with:
“Just as the society that doesn't venerate winners of races will produce fewer champion runners than the society that does, the society that does not honor entrepreneurial accomplishment will find fewer people of ability engaged in wealth creation than the society that does.”[iv]
            Dwight Lee and Candace Allen Smith covered similar ground in a later article but also used Campbell, notably the "separation-initiation-return" core of the monomyth (although they still missed the creation destruction connection between Campbell and Schumpeter). They suggest that entrepreneurs are seen negatively due to political biases and the fact that their role in capitalism is poorly understood.[v] Calling them heroes might offset this.
            Jeffery McMullen argues that seeing entrepreneurs as heroes doesn't mean that they are hyper-individualistic lone rangers, cutoff from the rest of society. They may receive some community support, but a new venture still requires someone to act, to take the first step. This requires courage due to uncertainty. They are heroic because they bear personal costs. McMullen also bases his observations on the work of Campbell and Schumpeter. He calls on scholars to end their hostility to calling entrepreneurs heroes. Otherwise, we are all "vulnerable to the tyranny of cautious conformity while subjecting our social systems to the constant threat of stagnation."[vi]
            Charles Murnieks, Jeffery McMullen, and Melissa Cardon also mention entrepreneurs being heroes (citing Campbell and Schumpeter). Using surveys, they found that entrepreneurs experienced positive emotions (PE) when they perceived that their self-identity as entrepreneurs matched that of society or their environment. That is, if the entrepreneurs saw themselves as risk-takers who enhance social welfare, and if the entrepreneurs thought that society saw them that way as well, positive emotions were experienced.
            Their empirical findings may support Allen and Lee's contention that society should honor entrepreneurial accomplishments:
"challenging environments are part of what makes a hero’s actions valiant. In a similar manner, we contend that dynamic environments may play a key role in framing an entrepreneur’s actions as courageous or innovative, because the individual is seen to act in the face of uncertainty and turbulence. Stakeholders (such as mentors, family members, or investors) who advise entrepreneurs should know and accentuate this point. By providing reaffirming feedback in dynamic and challenging environments, these stakeholders can elevate the PE experienced by the entrepreneur and motivate them to continue on their journey. In essence, this strategy can help separate the generation of PE from the success of the venture in some cases."[vii]
The "reaffirming feedback" is a way to honor the entrepreneur which motivates them to "continue on their journey."
            The idea that entrepreneurs might be heroes is now starting to reach the popular media. Barbara Haislip reported on how storytelling, especially about the founders, can be a marketing tool for businesses. She interviewed Angela Randolph of Babson College who said “Stories about founders and new innovations are often in the form of a myth and follow the hero’s journey.” Randolph then described the hero's journey as outlined in Campbell. Telling the founding story about "the hero’s call to action...pulls the audience in" if they can trigger "strong emotions."[viii]
            This question may be relevant now since entrepreneurship may be in decline. Jeffrey Sparshott reported that “the share of private firms less than a year old has dropped from more than 12 percent during much of the 1980s to only about 8 percent since 2010. In 2014, the most recent year of data, the startup rate was the second-lowest on record, after 2010.”[ix] Honoring and respecting the work of entrepreneurs might be a way to reverse this trend.[x]
            Also, historically, it may have only been when entrepreneurs became respected that economic growth took off. Deirdre McCloskey argues that what made the world so wealthy today, when average world income in 1800 was just $1 to $5 per day (adjusted for inflation)  was a change in ideas:
" Holland and then in England. The revolutions and reformations of Europe, 1517 to 1789, gave voice to ordinary people outside the bishops and aristocrats. Europeans and then others came to admire entrepreneurs..."
It was a "Middle-Class Deal" that gave entrepreneurs dignity and liberty to seek profit and generate social welfare. This led to a flurry of inventions, innovations and new institutions that made our modern world and therefore "the ordinary people, and especially the very poor, were made much, much better off." She even says "People had to start liking "creative destruction...""[xi]
            In fact, one of her books is titled Bourgeois Dignity: Why Economics Can’t Explain the Modern World. McCloskey writes
"that the modern world was made not by the usual material causes, such as coal or thrift or capital or exports or imperialism or good property rights or even good science, all of which have been widespread in other cultures and at other times."[xii]
McCloskey even credits "the Kirznerian entrepreneur [for allowing her] to make progress on the puzzle of economic growth." What is entrepreneurship? It is an "unhirable factor" or "alertness" and "can't be something that can be provided routinely, such as the services of banking or management. It must be creative."[xiii] Creativity comes from stepping outside the normal way of doing things, "jumping over the edge and moving into the adventure" (see the Campbell interview in the appendix). So the entrepreneur is just like the hero in mythology.[xiv]
Tape #1901: "Call of the Hero" with Joseph Campbell interviewed by Michael Toms. New Dimensions Foundation audio tape from a live interview on San  Francisco's radio station KQED. The following exchange was part of a discussion of the question of: What is creativity?
Toms: In a sense it's the going for, the jumping over the edge and moving into the adventure that really catalyzes the creativity, isn't it?
Campbell: I would say so, you don't have creativity otherwise.
Toms: Otherwise there's no fire, you're just following somebody else's rules.
Campbell: Well, my wife is a dancer. She has had dance companies for many, many years. I don't know whether I should talk about this. But when the young people are really adventuring, it's amazing what guts they have and what meager lives they can be living, and yet the richness of the action in the studio. Then, you are going to have a concert season. They all have to join a union. And as soon as they join a union, their character changes. (emphasis added, but Campbell changed the tone of his voice) There are rules of how many hours a day you can rehearse. There are certain rules of how many weeks of rehearsal you can have. They bring this down like a sledgehammer on the whole thing. There are two mentalities. There's the mentality of security, of money. And there's the mentality of open risk.
Toms: In other societies we can look and see that there are those that honor elders. In our society it seems much like the elders are part of the main stream and there is a continual kind of wanting to turn away from what the elders have to say, the way it is, the way to do it. The union example is a typical one, where the authority, institution, namely the union comes in and says this is the way it's done. And then one has to fall into line or one has to find something else to do.
Campbell: That's right.
Toms: And it's like treating this dichotomy between elders and the sons and daughters of the elders. How do you see that in relationship to other cultures?
Campbell: This comes to the conflict of the art, the creative art and economic security. I don't think I have seen it in other cultures. The artist doesn't have to buck against quite the odds that he has to buck against today.
Toms: The artist is honored in other cultures.
Campbell: He is honored and quickly honored. But you might hit it off, something that really strikes the need and requirements of the day. Then you've given your gift early. But basically it is a real risk. I think that is so in any adventure, even in business, the man who has the idea of a new kind of gift (emphasis added) to society and he is willing to risk it (this is exactly what George Gilder says in chapter three, "The Returns of Giving" in his book Wealth and Poverty). Then the workers come in and claim they are the ones that did it. Then he (the entrepreneur) can't afford to perform his performance. It's a grotesque conflict, I think between the security and the creativity ideas. The entrepreneur is a creator; he's running a risk.
Toms: Maybe in American capitalistic society the entrepreneur is the creative hero in some sense.
 Campbell: Oh, I think he is, I mean the real one. Most people go into economic activities not for risk but for security. You see what I mean. And the elder psychology tends to take over.
This discussion ended and after a short break a new topic was discussed.

[i] Cyril Morong, "The Creative-Destroyers: Are Entrepreneurs Mythological Heroes?" (Presented at the annual meetings of the Western Economic Association, July), 1992, available at:
Cyril Morong, "The Calling of the Entrepreneur," The New Leaders: The Business Bulletin for Transformative Leadership, November/December 1992, p. 4, available at:
Cyril Morong, "Mythology, Joseph Campbell, and the Socioeconomic Conflict,” The Journal of Socio-Economics, Volume 23, No.4, Winter 1994, pp. 363-382, available at:
[ii] Wyn Wachhorst in Thomas Alva Edison: An American Myth (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1981), pp.74-86, uses Joseph Campbell's book The Hero With a Thousand Faces to analyze part of Edison's early life, although Wachhorst suggests that Edison might have been more trickster than hero. Wachhorst quotes David McClelland from The Achieving Society with: "Interestingly, David McClelland found that Hermes, the trickster of the Greek pantheon, is the mythological type which best reflects the "achievement personality [of entrepreneurs]."" Morong (1992a) also mentions tricksters. The word entrepreneur does not appear in the index of the Edison book. So Wachhorst probably did not look at any research on entrepreneurs in general. He did not mention Schumpeter and creative destruction, either. Wachhorst often compares Edison to Prometheus, suggesting that using electricity is like stealing fire.
[iii] Israel Kirzner, Perception, Opportunity, and Profit (The University of Chicago Press, 1979), p. 163, 181.
From personal correspondence with Israel Kirzner he writes "I should point out in my own treatment of the entrepreneur, he is not seen as a "hero." Moreover, in my own treatment pure luck is not seen as entrepreneurial. (but as the act of deliberately putting oneself into a situation which one hopes will prove lucky is entrepreneurial)." It is my contention that the best way for a person to put themselves into a situation in which they will be lucky is for them to follow Campbell's advice that is based on his analysis of the hero's adventure. This is to follow your bliss, to listen to the wisdom of your heart and do what you love, not what the social system would have you do. If you follow your bliss, you are a hero. I believe that the most successful entrepreneurs follow their bliss and are therefore heroes. Jeffery McMullen (cited below) also mentions that entrepreneurs follow their bliss.
Joseph Schumpeter, The Theory of Economic Development (New Brunswick, NJ:Transaction Books, 1983), p. 923 lists three classes of motives for entrepreneurship: the will to found private kingdom, the will to conquer, and the joy of creating. The first, although seemingly only greedy, ranges, however, from "spiritual ambition down to mere snobbery." The second was like a sporting event, with money used to keep score, and not an end in itself. The entrepreneur of the third class of motives is in it for the sake of "exercising one's energy and ingenuity" and for the delight in venturing. All three classes of motives are anti-hedonistic, with the third being the most so. This certainly makes it plausible to see the entrepreneur as someone who follows his or her bliss.
[iv] Candace Allen and Dwight Lee, "The entrepreneur as hero," Journal of Private Enterprise, Volume 12, No. 1, Fall 1996, pp. 1–15.
[v] Dwight Lee and Candace Allen Smith,  “The Entrepreneur on the Heroic Journey,” The Freeman, Vol. 47 No. 4, April 1997, available at:
[vi] Jeffery McMullen, "Are we confounding heroism and individualism? Entrepreneurs may not be lone rangers, but they are heroic nonetheless," Business Horizons, Volume 60,          Issue 3, May–June 2017, pp. 257–259.
[vii] Charles Y. Murnieks, Jeffery S. McMullen, and Melissa S. Cardon, "Does Congruence with an Entrepreneur Social Identity Encourage Positive Emotion Under Environmental Dynamism?" Journal of Small Business Management, 27 February 2017, doi:10.1111/jsbm.12335, abstract available at:
[viii] Barbara Haislip, "Tell Me a Story," The Wall Street Journal, May 1, 2017, page R8, available at:
[ix] Jeffery Sparshott, "Sputtering Startups Weigh on U.S. Economic Growth," The Wall Street Journal, October  23, 2016, available at:
[x] Allen and Lee (1996) mention that "during the 1980s almost 90 percent of all business characters on television were portrayed as corrupt." It does not seem like there are many movies or TV programs even now that show entrepreneurs in a positive light.
[xi] Deirdre McCloskey, "Liberty and Dignity Explain the Modern World": An Essay Based on Bourgeois Dignity: Why Economics Can't Explain the Modern World, November 2011, available at:
[xii] Deirdre McCloskey, "Ideas, Not "Capital," Enriched the World," March 19, 2016, available at:
[xiii] Deirdre McCloskey, "A Kirznerian Economic History of the Modern World,"  June 17, 2011, available at:
[xiv] McCloskey also writes that the growing freedom and increasing respect for entrepreneurs "created more and more opportunities for Kirznerian alertness." Furthermore "Austrian discovery and creativity depends also on the other virtues, in particular on Courage and Hope" and "A new rhetorical environment in the eighteenth century encouraged (literally: "gave courage" to the hope of) entrepreneurs." She does, however, see a weakness in that Kirzner does not consider the audience of the entrepreneur, the customers and the rhetoric they use.