The following study aims to outline, whether the
perceptions of entrepreneurs about their entrepreneurial activities and
the underlying meanings of their activities are universal or whether
they vary systematically across cultures. In contrast to previous
studies, the phenomenographical approach and the resulting findings
of this study provide new insights into what constitutes
entrepreneurship by drawing an inference from the perceptions of
entrepreneurs in the United States and in Germany. Culture is shown
to have an important impact on entrepreneurship, since the
underlying meanings of entrepreneurship vary significantly among
the two sample groups. Furthermore, the study sheds more light on
the culturally contingent 'why' of entrepreneurship by looking at the
internal motivations of individuals instead of exclusively focusing on
character traits or external influences of the respective economic
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