Intrapreneurial orientation as a field of inquiry – a scoping review

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Entrepreneurial Orientation (EO), at an organisational level, and Intrapreneurial Orientation (IO), at the employee level, has been shown to have a multitude of benefits for organisations. EO and IO are important indicators of intra-organisational entrepreneurship in organisations of varying sizes. While EO has built a large body of knowledge since the 1980s and has been widely researched, IO emerged as a concept in the early 2000s, acknowledging the importance of employee-level entrepreneurial potential. While some studies have mapped the evolution of the EO concept, as well as analysed underlying dimensions, no study to date has attempted to map the growth and focus areas of the IO concept. The purpose of this study was therefore to analyse the growth of IO as a field of inquiry, as well as uncover focal areas of studies focusing on IO. The study adopted a qualitative research approach, employing a scoping review methodology and analysing the growth of the field of IO by means of frequency tables, and uncover focal areas in literature by means of a Word cloud analysis. Findings revealed that the majority of studies in the field of IO were conducted in the past ten years, with a substantial growth in studies from 2015 onwards. Findings also showed that IO studies most commonly investigate organisational and job performance, effects of IO, personality traits, cultural factors and leadership styles. The findings of this study contribute to the existing body of knowledge by highlighting existing focus areas in literature, thereby indicating unexplored and under investigated IO linkages.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Entrepreneurship
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Strategy and Management


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