Conference Theme:

Feeding the fire of entrepreneurship:
Theory and practice for the enterprising family

17-21 June 2019 | Bergamo, Italy

Key Deadlines

4th February 2019

Deadline for submissions

22th March 2019

Notification of acceptance for conference submissions

31th March 2019

Application for Consortia

6th April 2019

Notification of acceptance for Consortia

3rd May 2019

Registration deadline for paper authors


Keynote Speakers

Howard Aldrich, UNC Chapel Hill, USA

Jay Barney, University of Utah, USA

Nadine Kammerlander, WHU, Germany

 IFERA 2019 Annual Conference

In family firms, the intertwinement of the family and the business systems gives the former a crucial role in forging principles, values, and competences that affect entrepreneurial decision-making and outcomes. For example, family structure, members’ roles and relationships impact the resources made available to the firm and their use, both statically (i.e. at a given point in time) and dynamically (i.e. through family development and transitions, such as childbirth and marriage, but also divorce and death). Family-related norms, attitudes and their evolution also have implications on entrepreneurial behaviours (e.g., opportunity recognition, new business start-up decisions) and outcomes (e.g., survival, fulfilment of economic and non-economic goals). Scholars agree it is increasingly important to adopt a family perspective and to focus on the enterprising family as a yet unexploited unit of analysis in entrepreneurship research.
The aim of the conference is to create a fertile ground to a) support the development of theories of the enterprising family; b) favour the disciplinary cross-fertilization of family studies and entrepreneurship fields (e.g., the application of family science theory to investigate entrepreneurship); c) frame and systematize the contribution of management theories (e.g., agency theory, stewardship theory, socio-emotional wealth perspective, resource based view, …) to the theorizing on the enterprising family. Such theorizing effort at the “enterprising family” unit of analysis has relevant implications for practice too. Family business practitioners and educators can benefit from this line of inquiry, by recognizing the challenges related to family issues, which should be considered as complementary to the much more discussed business ones in fostering entrepreneurial potential of family firms.

The conference location is the old medieval part of Bergamo, a charming and lively town.
The University of Bergamo, ranked among the top 100 young universities worldwide and the top 500 universities worldwide according to the Times Higher Education, offers a vibrant academic environment



Conference Highlights

AMR paper development workshop (PDW)

“Theory development on the enterprising family” by Jay Barney as a pre-conference half day event (17th June)

Doctoral and Faculty Development Consortia

The Doctoral and Faculty Development Consortia are designed as interactive and educational events for doctoral students and faculty members developing and nurturing a career of scholarship in the family business field (18th June).

Special issues

JFBS special issue on conference theme

Session types

• Academic: full paper, working paper, research dissemination, case studies
• Editorial: “meet the editors” and special issues dedicated sessions
• Special sessions: a fresh look into theory and practice of entrepreneurship in family firms
• Family Business day: practice-oriented sessions open to family business owners and managers, and scholars interested into bridging theory and practice in family business research

Day-by-day program highlights

17th June: AMR PDW on “Advancing theory on enterprising families (and beyond)”, with members of AMR Editorial team. The purpose of the workshop is to develop working manuscripts with the aim of later submission for review at AMR
18th June: Doctoral and Faculty Consortia, where doctoral students and early career scholars can interact on key methodological aspects, related to both qualitative and quantitative methods, and get socialized in the family business field via close interaction with their peers and experienced participating faculty
19th June: Conference opening, special sessions (including dialogues with practitioners; sponsored research sessions; multidisciplinary research sessions), social dinner and Family Business Entrepreneurship Award
20th June: Editorial sessions and gala dinner with academic awards
21st June: Family Business day (practitioner speakers, session on how to run a family business center and how to learn from family business cases, networking with local entrepreneurs) and conference closing