Entrepreneurship and Innovation Toolkit
Lee Swanson, University of Saskatchewan
Copyright Year: 2017
Conditions of Use
Topics are well chosen and follow a good sequence. The textbook needs more examples and case studies for students to understand how people tackle different components of the business plan differently. Chapter 5 was my favorite as it covers a lot... read more
Topics are well chosen and follow a good sequence. The textbook needs more examples and case studies for students to understand how people tackle different components of the business plan differently. Chapter 5 was my favorite as it covers a lot of ground and also enjoyed the history behind the different concepts of entrepreneurship in Chapter 1.
More can be added on the marketing plan to cover online/offline marketing, setting goals, business mission, measuring success, access to capital, understanding demographics and customer personas, etc. as well as how and where to register a business with appropriate links to organizations that help you in this area. Book needs an index and a glossary for sure to make sub-topics more accessible.
The contents of the books are accurate in terms of all the definitions, references, websites and citations. It is error-free and unbiased.
The content of the book has great foundational principles of entrepreneurship which are timeless. The book however needs some new age updates regarding some of the available resources and new technological developments in the way business is done today. To make it more appealing to the target readers a use of more visual aids would be beneficial and may attract and appeal the younger group. A lot has changed since this book was published. An update is certainly required as the scene of entrepreneurship has changed a lot in the last 5 years.
Also, If this book is also intended to be used by the US market then an set of additional resources should be included regarding some examples, websites and resources that are more appropriate for the US market.
In terms of language and comprehension and concepts the book has clarity. The figures/charts however are not very clear. They need to look more crisp and have better resolution. Some of them appear pixelated.
Also, Chapter 01 asks a lot of questions...Some of them need to be answered as well or else this will always have to be a supplemental guide that will require a teacher to clarify concepts, not a self standing textbook a student can pick up and get an understanding of the subject matter on their own. If the questions are answered it will validate the concepts students have learned in the textbook.
The language, tone and messaging are consistent.
Some places there are inconsistencies especially in the type styling especially the bullets points are not consistent. There are some that are capitalized in some places and some are not.
Some paragraphs follow a justified type and some are left aligned...so more consistency required there as well.
Over all type hierarchy needs to be better for a better flow and readability.
The modules are broken down in good chunks and all the chapters and content flow well.
Overall organization of content is good. Updates are needed however as a lot has changed in last 5 years. The book will be better accessed if it had a glossary and Index to even see what sub topics will be covered. Right now it just has the titles and you don't know unless you read them in the chapter to see what sub topics will be covered. An Index with mentions of page numbers will also make references those specific sub topics easier to access.
Being a graphic designer and an entrepreneur coach who teaches at the undergrad level, I feel the interface can be made more reader friendly.
The typography is a bit dense and tight. Word spacing needs to be opened up a bit. Better resolution and lot more graphics needed to make it appealing to the target audience. The content is very thorough and useful to any student of entrepreneurship. With right typography, type hierarchy and good graphics it can become a great textbook. Also, some pages where the topic just has one line that topic can be pushed to the next page. Overall content needs to be better organized. Currently it is not very easy on the eyes.
Did not encounter any grammatical errors.
The textbook is more geared towards the Canadian population. As the fundamental concepts of entrepreneurship are more universal...this book can be adapted in various cultues...an addition of resources could be added to make it more appealing for the US crowd or any other country as well. I would like to see mention of additional resources for the immigrant, refugee and women population as many immigrants end up becoming entrepreneurs in Canada and USA and they need a bit more resources as to where they can register for business, how to access databases, local chamber of commerce, small business administrations and other such resources that can be very valuable for them to get started. That knowledge is needed in a toolkit to get started with any business.
Although a lot is covered in this textbook. It needs a teacher to help verify all the concepts as there are lot of open ended questions but they are not answered. It asks a lot of good questions which is awesome as there is so much that goes into entrepreneurship. As I mentioned earlier, Chapter 5 is my most favorite of all. This textbook would be great as supplemental workbook in addition to showing more current and relevant examples and case studies.
Overall I truly enjoyed it. It very thorough and can become even better with a few updated additions.
The topics are on target and presented in the correct sequence; examples in the book could be improved with more current topics. In the first chapter there should be examples of current entrepreneurs that the students can relate to (You Tube, Tik... read more
The topics are on target and presented in the correct sequence; examples in the book could be improved with more current topics. In the first chapter there should be examples of current entrepreneurs that the students can relate to (You Tube, Tik Tok, etc.) As much as I like knowing the history of entrepreneurship, the students are more interested in current topics.
I like the Business Model Canvas in chapter 04 and this would be a great tool for the students to work on.
In Chapter 05 it talks about Vision; you have to include Mission in that chapter as well; and, then tie it to Goals & Objectives. I would also include SWOT Analysis in this chapter. This chapter is where the students would start developing their business plan so this information is important.
Chapter 09 should include creativity along with Innovation; they are different and students should know the difference.
I did not see enough emphasis on the Marketing aspect of developing the business in the textbook. Today most companies are spending $.50 on the dollar for their marketing efforts; the book needs to talk about this and provide students with an understanding of how important marketing is to a small business; and, what they can do to address it in their business plan.
The book's content is accurate in its statements; the definition of the theories and concepts are accurate and are well represented in the information that is provided. Again, current examples should be added that the students can relate to; this will encourage them to read more. I did not see any inaccurate statements or errors in the text.
As I have stated previously, the content as it relates to theories and concepts is good; but, to make it more relevant you have to include current topics that the students can relate to. The majority of our students are visual learners and this textbook is all text. The students will only read so much and then they will lose interest if there isn't something that they can relate to; using current young entrepreneurs that they know or know of, will keep them interested in reading further. The majority of the references are prior to 2010; current topics from today's headlines would be of more interest to our students; and, it would keep them interested in wanting to read more of the book.
I found the writing to be at a level that students should be able to read and understand. A lot of freshmen today do not read at a freshman level and sometimes the text has to be brought down to their level. This textbook is written well and there wasn't too much text that they wouldn't be able to understand.
Overall, I did not find any issues with consistency. The book flows well and the writing also flows well from topic to topic and chapter to chapter. The framework for each chapter is consistent and should not pose a problem for the students to read and understand.
The book is broken into modules that fits well with the topics under discussion. From the first chapter to the last, the topics flow very nicely and build from introduction (micro) to the environment (macro) in an orderly fashion.
As I have stated previously, the topics are organized in order that allows the student to build upon their understanding of the topic with each chapter. My only concern is that there could be additional topics added with several sections to help the student better understand the topic; and, build a more comprehensive business plan.
From an interface standpoint, I would add more images and/or visual content for the student. As I have stated previously, the majority of our students are visual learners (magazine style books); without the visual content they become bored and do not read the entire content within the chapters/book.
I did not encounter any grammatical errors in the content that I read / reviewed.
I was not aware or, nor did I see any cultural inaccuracies or references in the text that I read or reviewed.
I liked the book but it does not meet the criteria for the student base that we are teaching. Our students are visual learners and this textbook is all text. Also, there are very few current topics that our students could relate to in the textbook. Lastly, for me to use this book I would have to add sections and/or topics (Goals & Objectives, Products & Services, USP, Marketing, etc.) to it to complete the work that students need to do to complete their business plans. I would also have to provide current articles and or references each week for the students so that they would stay connected to the chapters and want to read more.
The text covers the most important areas and ideas about Entrepreneurship and Innovation. Chapter 3: Evaluating Entrepreneurial Opportunities and Chapter 4: Business Models are especially on topic and provide useful examples that can be included... read more
The text covers the most important areas and ideas about Entrepreneurship and Innovation. Chapter 3: Evaluating Entrepreneurial Opportunities and Chapter 4: Business Models are especially on topic and provide useful examples that can be included in an Innovation Toolkit. The author includes relevant citations throughout the eTextbook and includes a Reference section. The glossary is limited and there is no index.
The content is accurate, error-free and unbiased.
The content is up-to-date, but not in a way that will quickly make the text obsolete within a short period of time. The text is written and/or arranged in such a way that necessary updates will be relatively easy and straightforward to implement. The content is easy to understand and has a logical flow that makes sense to a novice or experienced entrepreneur.
The text is written in lucid, accessible prose, and provides adequate context for any jargon/technical terminology used. The eTextbook could be use for both undergraduate and graduate courses. For graduate courses it would be best to pair it with other resources.
The text is internally consistent in terms of terminology and framework. The content is current and relevant to entrepreneurship and innovation.
The text is easily and readily divisible into smaller reading sections that can be assigned at different points within the course. I was able to mix and match the chapters as appropriate for the course. The chapter lengths were not too short or too long.
The topics in the text are presented in a logical, clear fashion. After the reading this eTextbook a student would have a very good understanding of entrepreneurship, innovation and a few tools that can be used to support support a business start-up. More content could be provided about innovation as well as innovation tools.
The text is free of significant interface issues, including navigation problems, distortion of images/charts, and any other display features that may distract or confuse the reader. Where appropriate it would have been helpful to have website/urls included with certain graphics and citations.
The text contains no grammatical errors.
The text was no culturally insensitive or offensive in any way. For the most part the examples are inclusive as it relates to races, ethnicities, and backgrounds. There may be a few cultural references that would need further explanation to an international audience.
I used this eTextbook for an international online course in New Venture Creation. The course was a one-week intensive course which was fast paced and included daily synchronous sessions. The content was appropriate for this course structure, the content was well received by the students and organized in a manner that made it easy for me to develop chapter quizzes as appropriate. I plan t use this eTextbook again next semester.
This textbook is for students and aspiring entrepreneurs who desire to understand the theories behind the art of entrepreneurship and who are searching for the tools that will elevate them to entrepreneurs. Pertinent questions are posed by the... read more
This textbook is for students and aspiring entrepreneurs who desire to understand the theories behind the art of entrepreneurship and who are searching for the tools that will elevate them to entrepreneurs. Pertinent questions are posed by the author that will assist budding entrepreneurs. The ten chapters offer the fundamentals covered in an entrepreneurship textbook/course. The glossary is limited to only a few terms with no page references.
The text is very well referenced offering six and half pages of references. There are references as recent as 2015.
Though published in 2017, there are current topics in entrepreneurship that could be addressed such as the rise of female entrepreneurship, green entrepreneurship, digital nomadism, the gig economy, and niche markets.
More terms could have been added to the glossary for reference.
The textbook is focused on theories of entrepreneurship which give definition to the subject. The "toolbox" comes in the form of relevant questions aspiring entrepreneurs would need to contemplate before creating a product or service.
The books is devoid of many pictures/charts/graphs, etc. It is readable through the use of bullets and bold topic headings. Each chapter begins with a few quotes relating to the chapter content. The learning objectives are clearly defined.
The textbook is logically organized. The first few chapters define entrepreneurship and reference theories on the subject. Each chapter begins with an overview before delving into the chapter topic. The middle chapters provide more of the tools to use to build a business plan. The remaining chapters address types of entrepreneurship and the entrepreneurial environment.
There are very minimal charts/graphs presented in this book.
I did not detect any grammatical errors.
Few personal examples of entrepreneurs and their success stories are presented which would give a cultural reference to the book.
For a complimentary textbook the basics of entrepreneurship are presented in a logical, easy to read fashion. However, this book lacks the bells and whistles found in the books published by the large publishing companies. Profiles of entrepreneurs or entrepreneurial firms would enhance the content. Case studies would allow readers to apply the principles behind the theories. End of the chapter questions would reinforce chapter content.
The book is comprehensive in that it does a good job of cataloging the different facets of entrepreneurship. It is well referenced and useful as a compendium of resources on the topic. On the other hand, it is mostly suitable as a resource for... read more
The book is comprehensive in that it does a good job of cataloging the different facets of entrepreneurship. It is well referenced and useful as a compendium of resources on the topic. On the other hand, it is mostly suitable as a resource for people who study entrepreneurship--as opposed to people who practice entrepreneurship. There are no exercises nor any guidance offered to students about how to implement or practice any aspect of what is discussed although the book offers many references to other sources that do.
The book is heavily referenced and relies on much work over the past decades in the field.
The book is relevant, and will stay that way, as a compendium of techniques and processes related to entrepreneurship and innovation. It includes information about the dominant teaching method today--lean startup. If and when a new teaching method or innovative pedagogy appears, then it will need to be refreshed.
As a practitioner I found it laden with terminology, mostly pulled from the literature, that will be relevant to people who study entrepreneurship but would not be that useful to practitioners.
The book was highly consistent.
The chapters are highly modular and can easily be lifted out and used as references specifically for the topics they cover.
The book is well organized and the organizational scheme is used consistently throughout.
No problems were observed.
No problems were observed.
This book is a compendium of the history of and science of entrepreneurship. It is a reference that may have value to other educators, but it would not be appropriate as a textbook for a class whose goal is to teach students the practice of entrepreneurship or how to develop an entrepreneurial mindset.
I thought the text covered many areas of entrepreneurship that are important, however seems as though a deeper explanation on many topics could have enhanced a lecture or classroom discussion. I recognize that even though entrepreneurship is a... read more
I thought the text covered many areas of entrepreneurship that are important, however seems as though a deeper explanation on many topics could have enhanced a lecture or classroom discussion. I recognize that even though entrepreneurship is a very broad topic and there have been many texts devoted to the creation, launch and building of a business that was not the goal of this text.I took the text to the literal explanation that there would be exercises or activities to explain or reinforce the concepts of entrepreneurship. The text did a good job of actually explaining the history and gestation of the modern day entrepreneurship concepts with very strong specific examples of entrepreneur quotes and stories. I would rate the overall comprehensiveness as a 3 for the reason that I would have enjoyed more depth in the actual examples offered. This book is designed in my mind as valuable tool for the instructor to use as a lecture guide.
I thought the accuracy of content and the cited research was good for a text that focused on theory of entrepreneurship. I reviewed some of the citations and know of some of the authors that were referenced and believe the author select professors who are leaders in their field and certainly will enhance the credibility. I think the author validates the importance of entrepreneurship in today's higher education curriculum.
The text content is timeless, meaning that the building blocks and foundation of the content will be relevant for a long time to come. I believe it will be easy to add and update new findings in entrepreneurial research and pedagogue as more research and examples can be used as references. Many of the examples used to support theory are ideas and examples I currently use in the classroom with other text. That being said for the concept of OER materials I thought this text covered the topic with a good foundation and the knowledge a student derives from this text will provide a good starting point in the concept and ideas of entrepreneurship
I think there are some opportunities to write clearer content either for the Canadian market or the US market, but one text does not fit well in both markets.I found the text to read in format not content like a published paper. I think it needs to be more reader friendly. Perhaps a listicle format chunking the content into smaller sections would be more appealing to a university student. I don’t think students today will read all the content in the current format. Even though headers are used effectively I think using different color headers, or font size could add to the appeal and engage the reader with more relevant examples. The use of single spacing also seems like a deterrent to read in sections and add to the readers comprehension.
I liked the titles of each chapter, however I would recommend moving chapter 9 Innovation and Entrepreneurship close to if not following chapter two Design thinking. I might even suggest Chapter 9 Innovation and Entrepreneurship precede chapter 2 Design Thinking. I also thought some of the chapters were very light on explanation for terms and concepts. An example of this comment is reflected in Chapter 2 Opportunity recognition and Design Thinking. There is only a paragraph or two that tries to explain Design Thinking. Even though Design Thinking is a very lengthy concept with many steps if I was a student I would be asking for more relevancy of the concept and perhaps even some examples. I also note throughout the text that there are papers cited by Baron and Karatko who I find very reliable and credible resources in the area of entrepreneurship. I might use this text in my foundation of entrepreneurship class and would more than likely move Business Models chapter 4 more toward the end of the 10 chapters. I could then use as a capstone project building on the previous topics.
There are ten chapters presented and the content fits neatly into the titles. The traditional 15 week semester would be better served with perhaps 14-15 chapters and the depth of content being much more granular. I do like the use of “tools” and might suggest that more be added . Approach the content with the goal to engage and draw in the students through asking them to use experiential activities to demonstrate the theory and content. I might also suggest adding graphics with more either color or shape to better explain the tools. I thought there could be better explanations of some of the tools. Consider this could be used as an entry level text and the student may have little knowledge of terms in the early part of the semester. Terms, concepts and theory needs a laddering process in order to scaffold and build a students schema in the principles of entrepreneurship
This topic has been covered in my previous remarks that would be reviewed as the consideration of restructuring the chapters might provide a better experience for the students.
I thought the text could use more color, definition or utilization of graphics to get the tools, charts and graphs to stand out. Suggested previously that the use of headers with larger font, or additional colors could enhance the readers experience.
I thought the grammar was a little confusing switching from terms and thoughts a US reader might be familiar with and then seeing some English/ Canadian spelling. I could not find any inconstancy in use of concepts that both audiences might understand
I could not find any bias or reference to culture on the topic of entrepreneurship in the text.
I enjoyed reading the text and look forward to consideration of this resource for my classes.
As a lecturer in Innovation Management, I was keen to read this text. A toolkit can be a helpful reference guide to dip in and out off and this text did not disappoint in this way. It covers a wide range of topics in the area of innovation and... read more
As a lecturer in Innovation Management, I was keen to read this text. A toolkit can be a helpful reference guide to dip in and out off and this text did not disappoint in this way. It covers a wide range of topics in the area of innovation and entrepreneurship. Many topics were however mentioned but then not covered in much depth. For example, I was interested in the area of Design Thinking, which was listed in the heading of chapter 2 along with Opportunity Recognition but then featured as only three short paragraphs at the end of the chapter. It is difficult to cover all areas of innovation but I would have expected more of the stages of the innovation process to be captured, for example selecting the innovation and implementing as well as sourcing and capturing value. More also on collaborative models of innovation e.g. open innovation/innovation networks could also be covered.
It is great to read quotes at the start of each chapter that sets the scene. Often provided by a popularised author who has written many important texts on the subject and it really captures your attention to that topic area. However, in many cases the source of the quote was missing. The figure headings also sometimes contained website addresses as the source. It was also not always possible to find the sources from the details provided in the reference list. I would also say that a number of notable key authors in the field were missing. For example the originator of theory on Core Competencies. However, I cannot fault the accuracy of the actual content, the author navigates through many areas of innovation content within this area and very competently summarises some of the key theories and areas of innovative practice.
There content does look up to date, bringing in recent examples throughout such as the airbnb business model. The opening chapter providing a history of entrepreneurship, discussing key definitions and the evolution of the filed is excellent therefore will not date and will continue to be a useful resource. However, the business world is fast changing and new approaches to how we innovate will continue to appear as we react to this change and so the author will need to continue to keep this text updated as he has done so with the last few versions. The way the text is written will make it relatively easy to update bringing in new current examples to inspire students.
The topic areas sometimes felt like they were delivered in note form, with long lists and bullets but in a way as it is presented as a toolkit then this should be anticipated and on the other hand it enables students to dip in and out of it and look for more depth on each topic later. So it gives an overview and can easily be flicked through. Setting expectations of the book by providing more on ‘the content of the book’ when listing this text could help here, as very little is revealed in the book description.
I would say the text is consistent in terms of the terminology used. The style incorporates a number of questions being raised to the reader throughout, they are not always answered but it gives the reader a chance to think about the topic and question aspects of innovation. I also see this as a benefit for students considering a research question to explore, perhaps for an undergraduate or postgraduate dissertation.
The modularity of this text is great. Students or academics can refer to particular chapters or sections of the book. However, more signposting of the sections would be good as commented in the next section.
The order of the chapters with the exception of the first chapter seems a little random, for example chapter 9 Innovation and Entrepreneurship does not come until chapter 9. Navigating the different sections could be helped with the different subsections having numbered headings and present in the contents page. There are lots of headings and subheadings but you do not know about the content until you get through the chapter. For example, if you are interested in social entrepreneurship, you do not realise there is a section on it until you get to chapter 10 on The Entrepreneurial Environment. A glossary would also be useful. An opening preface by the author explaining the layout of the book, would also be helpful in a future revision.
There is a lack of consistency in the way that the figures are displayed e.g. black border around or not, less professional quality of photograph (sheen from light on it). Figures don’t always indicate source or have a label e.g. p45. P44 is blank. Some sections have a feeling of being unfinished e.g. p57/58.
It is an informative text with lists and short paragraphs covering different topics and so flow in paragraphs content is not always linked but for the aforementioned reason.
Mix between American and British English used. There is a lack of critical discussion in this text but this is the style of the writing. Sometimes capitals are used at the start of each bullet point and sometimes not.
The text does not focus on a particular context i.e. it is not grounded in a particular international setting. Making references to particular races is not provided here. There is a section on social innovation which addresses the needs of individuals from areas of multiple deprivation, for example though community development organisations, it is good to see this inclusion here.
I really enjoyed reading this book and could see many applications for it, in terms of informing lecture material and also as previously mentioned, for students to refer to, to gain ideas for their research topics. A worthwhile book to read and gain insight into the field, very concisely presented for easy reading.
Table of Contents
Entrepreneurship and Innovation ToolkitAcknowledgementsIntroduction
- Chapter 1 – Introduction to Entrepreneurship
- Chapter 2 – Opportunity Recognition and Design Thinking
- Chapter 3 – Evaluating Entrepreneurial Opportunities
- Chapter 4 – Business Models
- Chapter 5 – Business Planning
- Chapter 6 – Financing Entrepreneurship
- Chapter 7 – Business Set-Up, Start-Up, and Growth
- Chapter 8 – Strategic Entrepreneurship
- Chapter 9 – Innovation and Entrepreneurship
- Chapter 10 – The Entrepreneurial Environment
ReferencesThe Language of Entrepreneurship
About the Book
This book is designed for upper year undergraduate students and graduate students studying fundamental entrepreneurship concepts.
About the Contributors
Dr. Lee Swanson is an Associate Professor of Management and Marketing at the Edwards School of Business at the University of Saskatchewan. His research focuses on entrepreneurship, social entrepreneurship, Aboriginal entrepreneurship, community capacity-building through entrepreneurship, and institutional-stakeholder engagement. Dr. Swanson’s current research is funded through a Social Sciences Humanities Research Council grant and focuses on social and economic capacity building in Northern Saskatchewan and Northern Scandinavia. He is also actively studying Aboriginal community partnerships with resource based companies, entrepreneurship centres at universities, community-based entrepreneurship, and entrepreneurial attitudes and intentions. He teaches upper-year and MBA entrepreneurship classes and conducts seminars on business planning and business development.