Being a part of the creative economy, the craft industry is distinguished by a particular business setting, production of goods, which are “creative” by nature, as well as entrepreneurs, who are often more content, rather than commercially, driven. Thus, within the broad area of research on entrepreneurship, this paper explores decisions and actions of entrepreneurs in the craft industry with a particular focus on opportunity development and identity of entrepreneurs. The article presents an empirical study based on fifteen case studies, representing different craft entrepreneurs and their ventures. The study forms a basis for conceptualisation of the empirical research using grounded theory approach. Results of the study unveil how entrepreneurial identity influences decisions and actions of the entrepreneurs in the craft industry and shed light on a distinct nature of craft entrepreneurs, who are likely to be driven by different factors than their counterparts in a conventional entrepreneurship. The study also offers an empirical insight into peculiarities of the entrepreneurial pursuit of opportunities in craft industry and puts forward typology of craft entrepreneurs based on their social identity. To date, there has been little empirical research on how entrepreneurial opportunities are developed in the craft industry. Taking the importance of the industry, it is important to explore if conventional entrepreneurship theories and theoretical foundlings can be used to develop efficient practices in support of craft entrepreneurship.
Head of Department, International Department, JSC TSI, Latvia
PhD, postr grdauate study programme director at RISEBA, Latvia. Previously an entrepreneur for many years, thus research interests are directly connected with entrepreneurship, strategy and search of new opportunities for business. Her business was in cultural sector of economy and therefore I believe that culture is much more than ‘non for profit’ activity. Her current research interests are connected with cultural identities and their use for country branding and creation of competitive advantage of companies.