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William (Bill) McDowell

William (Bill) McDowell

Executive/Academic Director; Turner Endowed Chair of Entrepreneurship

    Business and Engineering Convergence Center 3134
    (309) 677-2310


Ph.D., Management, University of North Texas
M.B.A., California State University, Dominguez Hills
B.S., Southwestern Christian University


The opportunity to be involved in students’ lives through higher education in the area of entrepreneurship is a great responsibility and privilege not to be taken lightly. In the classroom with the student, and later in life with the graduate, I strive to prepare my students for life in existing firms or in new ventures. The terms Think, Value, Communicate, and Lead highlight the areas that I see as important when educating these business students for success. I have built my teaching philosophy around these action words that I aspire my students to grasp. 

  • Think. I want my students to learn to think about their education, their situations, their environment, their strengths and their weaknesses.
  • Value. I want my students to learn about the value of resources, collaboration, and their educational opportunities both in the classroom and in the workplace.
  • Communicate. If a student cannot communicate effectively when they finish their college career, then we have failed to prepare them effectively for their own future.
  • Lead. Ultimately, we want to teach our students how to lead. I want each of these students to be empowered to lead in whatever situation they may face.

Students to me are much more than just a number, they represent an opportunity to be engaged in the process of developing people. I highly value this opportunity, and I make it my mission to make the learning process that they are going through as positive, compelling, and opportunistic as possible. The greatest moments of my professional career do not come from another journal publication acceptance letter, they come from seeing a student seizing on the opportunity for personal growth and grasping the entrepreneurial spirit. 


  • Entrepreneurial Experience


Recently Published Articles:

  • Liguori, E. W., Bendickson, J. S., & McDowell, W. C. (2018). Revisiting entrepreneurial intentions: a social cognitive career theory approach. International Entrepreneurship and Management Journal, 14(1), 67-78.
  • McDowell, W.C., Peake, W.O., Coder, L., & Harris, M.L. (2018). Building small firm performance through intellectual capital development: Exploring innovation as the “black box.” Journal of Business Research, 88, 321-327.
  • Mahto, R.V., McDowell, W.C., Kudlats, J., & Dunne, T.C. (2018). Learning orientation and performance satisfaction of small firm innovation: The moderating role of gender. Group Decision and Negotiation, 27(3), 375-391.
  • Irwin, K.C., Landay, K.M., Aaron, J.R., McDowell, W.C., Marino, L.D., & Geho, P.R. (2018). Entrepreneurial orientation (EO) and human resource outsourcing (HRO): A “hero” combination for SME performance. Journal of Business Research, 90, 134-140.
  • Mahto, R.V., & McDowell, W.C. (in press, 2018). A theory of entrepreneurial motivation. International Entrepreneurship and Management Journal.
  • Kudlats, J., & McDowell, W.C. (in press, 2018). Ethics and family commitment: A study of their relationship to family firm performance. Journal of Business and Entrepreneurship
  • Gibson, S. G., McDowell, W. C., Aaron, J., & Harris, M. L. (2016). The Halo of Social Entrepreneurship. Journal of Ethics & Entrepreneurship, 6(2), 85-103.
  • McDowell, W.C., Wilson, R., & Kile, C.O. (2016). An Examination of Retail Website Design and Conversion Rate. Journal of Business Research, 69(11), 4837-4842.
  • Dickins, D.W, Gibson, S.G., Harris, M.L., & McDowell, W.C. (2016). Financial Literacy in Family Firms: A Primer for Business Owners and Opportunity for Student Learning. Journal of Applied Management and Entrepreneurship, 21(3), 57-72.
  • Dunne, T., Aaron, J., McDowell, W.C., Urban, D.J., & Geho, P.R. (2016). The Impact of Leadership on Small Business Innovativeness. Journal of Business Research, 69(11), 4876-4881.
  • McDowell, W. C., Harris, M. L., & Geho, P. R. (2016). Longevity in Small Business: The effect of maturity on strategic focus and business performance. Journal of Business Research, 69(5), 1904-1908.
  • Aaron, J., Gibson, S.G., McDowell, W.C., Harris, M.L., & Jobe, M. (2015). Structuring executive compensation contracts: The impact of industry technological Intensity. Journal of Management Policy and Practice, 16(3), 11-26.
  • McDowell, W. C., Grubb, W. L., & Geho, P. R. (2015). The impact of self-efficacy and perceived organizational support on the impostor phenomenon. American Journal of Management, 15(3), 23-29.
  • Kudlats, J., & McDowell, W.C. (2015). The relationship of board composition to company performance in small and medium sized firms: A theoretical model. Small Business Institute Journal, 11(2), 41-47.
  • Peake, W.O., Harris, M.L., McDowell, W.C., & Davis, P.E. (2015). Get what you give? An examination of enlightened self-interest, philanthropic intent, and engagement in philanthropy for small firm owners. Journal of Small Business Strategy, 25(2), 77-93.
  • Geho, P. R., & McDowell, W. C. (2015). The Small Business Institute and Small Business Development Center network collaboration: Student experiential learning opportunities. Small Business Institute Journal, 11 (1), 1-6.
  • Jesse, E., Dewees, C. B., & McDowell, W. C. (2015). A Mini-Business Institute (MBI) in a Midwifery Professional Roles Course: An Innovative Teaching Strategy for Successful Career Planning and Business Management of Practice. Journal of Midwifery & Women’s Health, 60(1), 75-82.
  • Aaron, J., Harris, M. L., & McDowell, W. C. (2014). Optimal CEO Incentive Contracts: A Prospect Theory Explanation. Journal of Business Strategies, 31 (2), 337-357.

Recently Published Book Chapters:

  • Mahto, R.V., & McDowell, W.C. (in press, 2018). Internet of things (IoT) and entrepreneurship education: Opportunities and challenges. In C.H. Matthews & E. Liguori (Eds.), Annals of Entrepreneurship Education and Pedagogy, 3rd Ed. Edgar Elgar Publishing, Ltd. 
  • Peake, W. O., McDowell, W. C., Harris, M. L., & Davis, P. (in press, 2017). Can women entrepreneurs plan to prosper? Exploring the role of gender as a moderator of the planning-performance relationship. In D. Ribeiro (Ed.), Inside the Mind of the Entreprneur.
  • Dewees, C., & McDowell, W.C. (2016). Developing a business plan for a midwifery practice. In J. Slager (Ed.), An Administrative Manual for Midwifery Practices (27-36). Silver Springs, MD: American College of Nurse-Midwives.


  • Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Small Business Strategy, 2015- Present
  • Turner Chair of Entrepreneurship, 2017- Presenter
  • Editorial Review Board Member, Journal of Innovation and Knowledge, 2015- Present
  • Board of Governors, Global Innovation and Knowledge Academy, 2015-Present
  • Plenary Speaker, Global Innovation and Knowledge Academy, 2015, 2016, 2017
  • Past President, Small Business Institute
  • Mini-Midwifery Business Institute Presenter, 2008- Present
  • Provided Testimony to the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Small Business


  • Best Paper Award, Global Innovation and Knowledge Academy, 2018
  • Best Paper Award, Global Innovation and Knowledge Academy, 2017
  • Homer L. Saunders Mentor Award, Small Business Institute®,2016
  • Best Empirical Paper Award, Small Business Institute®.2015
  • Best Research Paper Award, Association of Small Business and Entrepreneurship.2014
  • Best Research Paper Award, Small Business Institute®. 2011 and 2013
  • Project of the Year Award, Small Business Institute®. 2011 and 2013
  • Presented with the East Carolina University College of Business Commerce Club Faculty Teaching Award East Carolina College of Business Commerce Club. 2012