[We’re pleased to welcome authors Lynn M. Forsythe of California State University, Fresno, Lizhu Y. Davis of California State University, Fresno, and John M. Mueller
St. Edward’s University.They recently published an article in the Entrepreneurship Education and Pedagogy entitled “Guiding Entrepreneurs Through the Quagmire of Business Entities – Three Hypothetical Scenarios for Discussion,” which is currently free to read for a limited time. Below, they recount the motivation for this research.
What motivated you to pursue this research?
We felt there was a lack of teaching resources and materials for faculty who teach entrepreneurship courses when it comes to educating students (future entrepreneurs) about creating a business entity to support their new business idea. Some faculty may be tempted to over simplify the topic or ignore it completely. These cases help faculty illustrate the complexity of the decision. These cases are not particularly intended for business law faculty; however, they can definitely use them if they need a variety of tools to convey knowledge about legal entities for nascent companies.
In what ways is your research innovative, and how do you think it will impact the field?
The research is not innovation. Rather it is the method of conveying knowledge that is new and useful for faculty and students. We intended to create more diverse pedagogical offerings. Legal topics tend to be taught out of a textbook, and through results of court cases, not from case studies. The three case scenarios we have written help students better understand the legal entity decision by engaging them in a context they can relate to with their business idea. The case scenarios are an experiential means of engaging students on a topic that could be considered dry.
What did not make it into your published manuscript that you would like to share with us?
The main portion of the manuscript consists of three case scenarios, which are couched in different industries with different decision points. We have provided outside of the manuscript, and online with the publisher, supporting materials that simplify the basic differences between various legal entities (sole proprietorship, limited liability partnership, limited liability corporation, C corporation). This information is normally found in textbooks, however, we have simplified it in a PowerPoint slide deck and chart format to easily and quickly enable both faculty and students to reference the additional material.
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