Trevor Israelsen | PhD Candidate

I study how people come together to make things that last.


Recent Publications

Suddaby, R., Israelsen, T., Mitchell, J.R., & Lim, D. (2021), Entrepreneurial visions as rhetorical history: A diegetic narrative model of stakeholder enrollment, Academy of Management Review.

Mitchell, J.R., Israelsen, T., Mitchell, R.K., & Lim, D. (2021). Stakeholder identification as entrepreneurial action: The social process of stakeholder enrollment in new venture emergence, Journal of Business Venturing, 36(6), 106146.

Suddaby, R., Israelsen, T., Bastien, F., Saylors, R., & Coraiola, D. (2022), Rhetorical History as Institutional Work. Journal of Management Studies

Israelsen, T. & Mitchell, R (2022). Insightful empirical knowledge in grounded theory and historical organization studies.

Suddaby, R., Schultz, M. & Israelsen, T. (2020). Autobiographical memory and identities in organizations: The role of temporal fluidityIn Andrew Brown (Ed.) Oxford Handbook of Identities in Organizations. 373-390.

Mitchell, J.R., Israelsen, T. & Mitchell., R.K., (2020). Entrepreneurial cognition research—An update. In Michael Gielnick, Melissa Cardon, & Michael Frese (Eds.) SIOP Handbook on the Psychology of Entrepreneurship.

Current research projects

My research focuses on the entrepreneurial processes through which organizations emerge, evolve and are institutionalized across generations in communities.

Entrepreneurship and institutional leadership: Entrepreneurship is often discussed as a potential solution for societal grand challenges. But, while such challenges tend to be intergenerational, firm lifespans are dramatically shrinking. In this project I accordingly focus on the ways in which entrepreneurship leads to the creation of institutional leaders across generations in business and society. I focus on the institutional work of entrepreneurs and their family members in organizations and broader communities. Entrepreneurial families often have a unique place in the history and folklore of their communities. On the one hand, this privilege can enable entrepreneurial family dynasties to mobilize resources across economic, social and political domains. Yet, on the other hand, families themselves are often implicated in complex ways in grand challenges. In this project I explore the situations in which business dynasties are likely to maintain, transform or manipulate institutions – as well as the effects of such work on their communities. Entrepreneurship, thus conceptualized, represents a means of challenging and renewing the social structure and institutional leadership of a community.

LIFE Conference | April 7, 2022 | Award-winning Pitch on “Business Dynasties”

Children’s Hospitals: We tend to think about children’s hospitals as organizations deeply embedded in and profoundly supported by their communities. But in the late nineteenth century, the idea of the children’s hospital was new and ambiguous. Was it an orphanage? Did it belong to the church or to the emerging profession of pediatrics? Was it ethical for a children’s hospital to accept compensation in exchange for care? Or should the organization be supported only through donations?

Such questions needed to be sorted out amongst the growing polyphony of stakeholder voices who promoted the children’s hospital as the project moved forward. Stakeholders visions of the future were fuzzy, imperfectly shared and protean. How do stakeholders come together around such visions? How are entrepreneurial visions enabled and constrained by the historical institutions of a society? And what role do the incomplete, partial and ambiguous characteristics of entrepreneurial visions play in marshalling stakeholder support for extended entrepreneurial projects?


Latest teaching experience:

Entrepreneurship 100

Foundations of Entrepreneurship

Spring 2021

University of Victoria

Instructor effectiveness (9.2/10)

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Interest in long-term success”

He really wants his students to succeed. He is very understanding.

I feel that my instructor was approachable and helped in any way he could.

Trevor goes above and beyond and one can tell he is invested in the material and the course itself, and makes the course interesting for all.

Passion and excitement for the live lectures, weekly personalized announcements/ class updates, utilized online learning to the max. Great detailed feedback on assignments.

Trevor was a great professor. In his classes we got to do a lot of teamwork and working with others which I believe is essential in this class. Trevor was always there to help, whether we had a question or needed something to be better explained he was there to help. He also was very passionate in his teaching skills which made the class very engaging and fun.

Overall great professor who taught many essential skills needed in Business and life!

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Generative learning environment”

I loved how he always asked questions and was in a great mood which made it easier to participate and understand the current issues.

He made the class seem relaxed.

He was very good at giving every student the opportunity to share their thoughts and opinions during class time and made the class very interactive.

Good group discussion, comfortable work environment, instructor is easy to get along with and helpful.

He did a good job of getting everyone involved in class discussion and soliciting active participation from the class.

His classes are very interactive.

Trevor was open to ideas and allowed for a lot of creative thinking. He was also very understanding with any questions or issues I had. Trevor not only allows for students to challenge the norm, but he encourages and embraces it.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Meaningful learning”

The biggest strength of this class is that Trevor always had a creative and engaging way of covering the week’s material. Whether it was a debate or drawing pictures to represent the concepts, it always kept my attentions and called for involvement from the entire class. I truthfully can’t think of a weakness of this course.

Trevor did a wonderful job at getting us to engage us with the concept of entrepreneurship, which made the course content not only easier to understand but more relatable as well.

Trevor is a huge strength to this course, he breaks down information in an understandable and manageable way, makes sure to use language that we as students can understand clearly.

Trevor was one of the best teachers I have had thus far at UVIC and is always engaged and enthusiastic in his sessions. He shows a true passion for the topic is a knowledgeable educator who makes learning interesting and easy.

Curriculum Vitae

Updated September 22, 2022