Warmest greetings to the research website of Prof. Wilson Ng!
I research and teach entrepreneurial processes in designing and developing severely challenged enterprises. Important contemporary examples of these enterprises are “disabled ventures”, which are formed by physically and/or mentally impaired entrepreneurs to exploit social and commercial opportunities that arise from their disabilities. I research how disabled entrepreneurs design and develop successful ventures based on their ideas, leadership, adaptability, and enterprise.
My current research explores comparative processes of opportunity formation among visually impaired entrepreneurs (who are registered as blind people) in the USA, UK, and European Union. This research is about improving the daily lives of physically impaired people. I seek to do so by disseminating knowledge of diverse ways in which “disabled” people draw on their visible and invisible disabilities as powerful resources to overcome economic and social barriers of our sighted world.
What may be learned from this research?
A crucial outcome of my disabled research is for businesses, social organizations, entrepreneurs, and students to understand how they may launch successful ventures without having to endure the typical experience of failure when they bring new ideas to the market. In our world that disabled entrepreneurs share, they have much less room for failure- because of their disabilities- than many other entrepreneurs. How then can non-disabled entrepreneurs learn from disabled entrepreneurs and reduce our failures? Impossible? One of my first lessons is how disabled entrepreneurs have to cut out failure in order to survive. Moreover, I explain how a number of visually-impaired entrepreneurs have created a stream of successful ventures because of their disabilities [See “Disabled” Entrepreneurs Section],
A further example of my interest in challenged enterprises is in my continuing research of long-lived businesses that were formed out of extreme social and economic challenges faced by their founding families. Most of the family businesses that I have written about remain owned and/or controlled by their founding families. My interest here is in understanding the persistence of family control in long-lived businesses that no longer face the extreme challenges of their founders.
I am an Adjunct Professor in Entrepreneurship & Family Business at Regent’s University London. I was appointed in June 2018 to lead the launch and development of Regent’s Entrepreneurship and Family Business Centre. I am also contracted by Regent’s University to contribute my research and publications to this Research Centre. Furthermore, I continue to supervise five PhD students, including students I brought over to Regent’s from my previous university.
In addition to my role at Regent’s, in October 2019 I was appointed an Adjunct Professor of Corporate Finance at Emlyon Business School in Écully, France. My principal responsibility at Emlyon is to teach core modules in corporate finance and advanced corporate finance to graduate students on the International MBA program.
On October 1, 2021, I will take up a full-time role as professor d’entrepreneuriat at IDRAC Business School, Campus de Lyon. I will teach entrepreneurship courses in French and English and will move to Lyon. However, I will retain my Adjunct Professorship at Regent’s University London where I will continue to supervise doctoral students.
This website has two, equal purposes:
- To present my research, teaching, and consulting activities, with links to a number of my recent publications on challenged entrepreneurs and their enterprises, &
- To offer novice researchers a convenient, preliminary guide in conceiving, developing, and operationalizing their research, from scratch.
My personal profile is posted here: See Profile.
My principal research projects are set out in the following sections on:
- Opportunity formation processes among physically-challenged entrepreneurs [See “Disabled” Entrepreneurs Section],
- The nature and practices of family-owned and/or controlled enterprises [See Family Businesses Section], &
- Environmentally and/or technologically-challenged organizations [See Large Technology Organizations Section].
My research publications and working papers are posted here: [See Publications].
All my research outputs, comprising my publications and successful funding, & my history of academic roles & services are posted on my ORCID website: <https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2079-4747>.
Where am I presenting my research?
From October 2020, I will be presenting my research at the following principal events. Events will be added on a rolling basis as I confirm my participation. Except where indicated, all events will be virtual because of the current pandemic:
- October 22-23: Colloquium organized by IDRAC Lyon & DMU Leicester Castle Business School in Avignon, France. I gave a keynote talk on visually impaired entrepreneurs. This talk drew on published work & new, unpublished data collected with Félix Arndt at University of Guelph, Canada, & Dianne H.B. Welsh at University of North Carolina at Greensboro, USA. Additionally, I presented a paper on “Soft” Family Influence without Ownership: Consanguineous Management without “Hard” Shareholding Control in a Large Family Firm”. This paper was written with Natalia Vershinina at Audencia Business School, France- <https://www.ecoles-idrac.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/Programme-colloque-Avignon.pdf>.
- November 12-13: Third Annual Diversity & Inclusion Research Conference (<https://www.dirc.info/presenter-wilsonng, https://dirc20.info>) held in New York, USA. I gave a keynote talk at this virtual conference about my research on opportunity formation among visibly & invisibly impaired entrepreneurs.
- February 11, 2021: University of Sharjah, College of Business Administration, United Arab Emirates. I have been invited to present my preliminary data on sight-impaired and disabled entrepreneurs in the USA and UK at a research seminar where I will be the sole speaker. I will draw on data collected to date from my survey among members and associates of several blind associations in the USA who manage their own ventures and among sight-impaired entrepreneurs in Canada & the UK. My discussion will be based on my JBVI article with Félix Arndt (2019) & my working paper on venture creation among disabled entrepreneurs.
- 12 May, 2021: Presentation to entrepreneurship & management students of Università degli Studi di Cagliari, Sardinia, on venture creation among disabled entrepreneurs. My talk will be in English, with the following Q&A in Italian. To join this event, please email <firstname.lastname@example.org> with your name, affiliation, & personal URL.
- September 2021- Presentation of published article at Date to be Agreed: National Defence University, Islamabad, Pakistan: Presentation to leadership & management students on “Entrepreneurial Opportunities During & Beyond the Current Pandemic. What May be Learned from the Activities of Disabled Entrepreneurs?” To join this event, please email <email@example.com> with your name, affiliation, & personal URL.
Over the past 18 months, I have presented my research principally at the following events:
- August 31-September 3, 2021: The British Academy of Management (BAM’s) annual conference, which will be conducted online. I will present a published article, in Technology Analysis & Strategic Management, with the title “Do-It-Yourself Laboratories, Communities of Practice, and Open Innovation in a Digitalized Environment” (in collaboration with Félix Arndt & Tori Huang). The published article is available at: <https://www.tandfonline.com/eprint/DYKS6GZQD6FTSKMIMBMB/full?target=10.1080/09537325.2021.1931674>.
- September 2-4, 2020: BAM’s annual conference, conducted online. I presented an accepted paper at this conference with the title: “Do-It-Yourself Laboratories as Integration-based Ecosystems” (in collaboration with Félix Arndt & Tori Huang). The open, non time-limited recording of my presentation for this conference is available at: <https://vimeo.com/444648241>. The published article, in Technological Forecasting & Social Change, is available at: <https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0040162520310751?dgcid=author>.
- August 7-11, 2020: The Academy of Management’s 80th Annual Conference to be held in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. On August 9 at 16.00 EDT I presented an accepted paper at this virtual conference with the title: “Soft” Family Influence without Ownership: “The ‘Goodness’ of Consanguineous Managers following a Loss of ‘Hard’ Shareholding Control” (co-authored with Natalia Vershinina & Matthew Cadbury). The open recording of this presentation is available at: <https://youtu.be/LEX8nKd4Kb8>. Following internal reviews, this paper has been submitted to a family business journal. Additionally, a second paper on family imprinting, with the same data, has been developed for a management journal.
- March 6, 2020: Digital Transformation & Circular Entrepreneurship Conference (Co-sponsored by the University of Falmouth & the British Academy of Management), University of Falmouth, Cornwall, England, where I presented an early draft of the paper cited immediately above & which was then titled: “Do-It-Yourself Laboratories as Enablers and Beneficiaries of Social Change: A Multi-dimensional Perspective (in collaboration with Félix Arndt & Tori Huang).
- September 3-5, 2019: The British Academy of Management Annual Conference in Birmingham, UK, where I presented my Journal of Business Venturing Insights (JBVI) (published in June 2019) on visually impaired entrepreneurs: “Leveraging Extreme Challenges for Successful Venture Creation” (co-authored with Félix Arndt). An earlier version of the article was accepted as a full paper for presentation at this Conference. The paper won the 2019 Best Paper Award in the Entrepreneurship Track of this Conference.
- August 7, 2019: Seminar at Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, where I presented the same JBVI article to faculty members and students of the Lazaridis School of Business & Economics.
- February 28 to March 2, 2019: The Organization Science Winter Conference in Phoenix AZ, USA, where I presented my working paper titled: “Venture Creation among Visually-impaired Entrepreneurs” (co-authored with Félix Arndt) at this invitation-only meeting hosted by the FT45-ranked journal, Organization Science.
The photograph at the top left of this webpage shows the paper’s co-author, Professor Félix Arndt (University of Guelph, Canada), & me at BAM’s 2019 Annual Conference with our Best Paper Award in Entrepreneurship.
At this conference, I also presented a discussion paper on “The Nature and Effects of ‘Soft’ Family Influence in the Success of an Iconic, Long-lived Enterprise”. This paper, which will be presented at the Academy of Management’s Annual Conference in August 2020, is based on original data gained from deep access to stakeholders and archives of one of Britain’s oldest firms, Cadbury. This firm with an iconic brand-name was owned and/or controlled by founding family members for almost 180 years.
The Cadbury paper is co-researched & co-authored with Professor Natalia Vershinina (Audencia Business School) & Dr Matthew Cadbury (University of Hertfordshire). Matthew is a member of the fifth generation of the founding Cadbury family and worked for over 11 years as a senior manager in the formerly family-owned firm.
Data for this paper were also obtained from Cadbury family and corporate archives at Cadbury’s corporate HQ in Bournville, Birmingham. Further information on the paper is set out below [See Family Businesses & Other Closely-controlled Enterprises Section].
My teaching is principally based on the knowledge that I derive from my research & consulting activities (my consulting work is set out in the section immediately below this.) I teach doctoral, MBA, MSc, Executive, and UG classes in both research-led and teaching-intensive Higher Education Institutions. I continue to lead all of the classes I teach, mostly in entrepreneurship and innovation management. This teaching is based on a creative approach to student learning, involving interactive class experience of core topics in entrepreneurship and innovation, and internships in SMEs in EU (for UK students) and UK (for EU students). Classwork in the UK involves regular interaction, in real time, with participants in the same class in Emlyon and UNICA Sardinia where I also teach.
This discursive and experiential approach to learning is sensitive to cultural identities and local resources and seeks to build students’ understanding of people-centered processes in venture creation by contrasting the learning experiences of students from different social backgrounds. As a learning coach, I set out learning outcomes, and then facilitate external interaction among students and propose thought frameworks for them to explore their own pathways in achieving targeted outcomes.
My teaching record at PhD, Postgraduate, and Undergraduate levels are set out in my Profile page [See Profile] as well as in the Section on Supervision & Teaching [See Supervision and Teaching Section].
A key input of my research and teaching of challenged entrepreneurs is in my consulting activities. I currently perform the following non-executive, advisory roles in several UK-based technology start-ups:
- Advisory Board Member of a UK FinTech crowd-funding & crypto-coin venture, https://crowdforangels.com/our-team,
- Founding Director of a scientific R&D venture, based in Cambridge Science Park, UK, that is in the process of commercializing a recent breakthrough, discovered by the venture’s CEO, in High Temperature Superconductivity: <https://lausuperconductors.com>, &
- Non-executive Director & Member, Board of Trustees, Ming-Ai Association & Ming-Ai (London) Institute: <http://www.ming-ai.org.uk/about-us/ming-ai-association>. Ming-Ai Association was established in 1993 to promote Chinese culture in the UK and to deliver cultural exchanges between the UK and Greater China.
My consulting work in all three ventures is in advising on their strategic growth & corporate development as commercial entities in their respective industries.
Please feel free to email me with questions & comments on my research, teaching, & consulting work at: <NgW@regents.ac.uk> & <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
My Skype address is: <kangtzu1>. I also use many other social media platforms through my UK and Italy mobile phones. Please email me for these numbers.